- Last Updated: 12:31 AM, August 18, 2012
- Posted: 12:20 AM, August 18, 2012
Director James Toback usually power-lunches at the Harvard Club on West 44th Street. But in school he was on the A-list at Mr. Bartley’s Burger Cottage in Cambridge. “It was the spot,” Toback says of the Massachusetts Avenue meat mecca, where classmates Al Gore and Marty Peretz had a standing table. “I ate lunch and dinner there every day. Or, lunch and dinner and a ‘mid-afternoon burger.’ ” The lucky few were ordained with their own sandwiches. “It was Swiss cheese, American cheese and blue cheese melted onto a burger,” Toback said of “the Toback Burger” while eating sensible sushi at the Harvard. At Mr. Bartley’s, ordering wasn’t necessary. “Our eyes would meet, and the burger would be on the grill,” he says of his connection with the short-order chef, the way Karl Malone might reminisce about John Stockton. But Toback’s burger was later retired.“When I stopped my regular patronage, I was weeded out,” says the director of the upcoming doc “Seduced and Abandoned.” Burgers on Bartley’s current menu include the Joe Kennedy III and the Skip Gates.