“Big Kahuna Burger?…The cornerstone of any nutritious breakfast!”
At some point in June 2012, my friend Luke and I made a pact; to find the best burger in London. What is it that so satisfying about a good burger? The meat? The glazed bun? The relish and salty sides that accompany it? Or is it the nostalgia of every bite that takes people back to their childhoods? Many bloggers have taken on the task before in search of this holy grail, but what’s the fun in reading about it all?* Move out of the way, clowns and kings! It’s time to follow our taste buds!
*With the exception of this particular blog.
This is not necessarily in ranking order or by any approved scoring system; just in sequence of where we visited, and literally, our gut feeling.
1) Byron Burger, Northcote Road, Clapham SW11 (Score: 9/10)
Burger: Californian (6oz beef patty, dry cured bacon, guacamole, pickled red onion, glazed bun)
This is a special seasonal burger that Tom Byng brought back from his time on the west coast of the US. This was the closest I think I have been to tasting what I imagine the “Big Kahuna Burger” to be. The meat was medium pink, juicy and god damn good! The bun is still the best bun I have ever tasted on a burger, it doesn’t dry out the flavours. It filled a hole, and maybe it was the taste buds going into overdrive, but I still had a few more bites in me.
2) MEATliquor, Welbeck Street, West End W1G (Score: 8/10)
Burger: Bacon cheeseburger (Beef, cheese, bacon, red onions, pickles, lettuce, mustard with a side of Philly cheese steak fries)
This very nearly takes the trophy away from Byron. The burger was juicy and cooked medium, and the Philly cheese steak fries add to the gut-buster experience! It was the 60+ minute queue in the cold on a Wednesday night that knocks it down a point.
3) The Diner, Ganton Street, Soho, W1F (Score: 6/10)
Burger: The Diablo (8oz patty made from rib, sirloin, filet & chuck topped with bacon and cheese)
It was a decent burger, but the sides let me down here. I ordered a chocolate malt milkshake which got served in the same silver-tinned pint as GBK and Byron, only to be 2/3 full. Come on guys, an extortionate £4.70 deserves a full one.
4) Honest Burgers, Soho, W1F (Score: 7/10)
Burger: The Honest Burger (Beef, red onion relish, smoked bacon, cheese, pickled onion, lettuce)
This place gets very busy and they don’t take bookings, but they can call you back if you want to wait in a nearby bar. The burger was perfectly chargrilled on the outside and pink in the middle, and the rustic fries were crispy. The menu isn’t expansive; chicken, beef or veggie (which has been outlawed by this researcher), and I was disappointed with no milkshakes. Be sure to ask about the specials board, and double up if it’s on there!
5) The Shake Shack, Covent Garden, WC2E (Score: 8/10)
Burger: SmokeShack Double (Cheeseburger with bacon, chopped cherry peppers and shack sauce. Crinkle fries on the side)
The Shake Shack double stack was a tasty burger! We were lucky enough to get served on it’s opening night in Convent Garden, and the wait was worth it. It has a different set up to other gourmet burger chains that are popping up; it has a fast food service set up. This seemed like a true American burger as it was quite difficult to finish along with the crinkle fries and chocolate milkshake!
So there you have it for now. I think MEATliquor’s burger was the tastiest, but Byron offered the better overall meal along with sides, milkshake and a good beer. The quest doesn’t stop here though, there are others out there to be found!