It isn’t too much of a secret that London is home to a vast number of burger joints, and we’ll be tackling them one at a time so we can feature each chain – or independent restaurant – on this blog.
The first London restaurant we have to report on is Honest Burgers located in Soho. We were in the capital for a gig, so decided to get an early dinner before everyone started piling out of work on the hunt for food. After relying on the genius that is Google Maps navigation, we found the restaurant down Meard Street.
Happy to see there wasn’t a queue out the door and down the road, we were quickly shown to a table by a friendly waitress who handed us a couple of menus and left us to make up our minds. We spent a few minutes mulling over the menu choices before we gave our order to the waitress.
Since you’re reading this you’ll probably want to know what we ordered, and what it actually tasted like. But don’t forget we’re writing to you from Beers and Burgers, so the drinks were equally as important in our taste test!
First up Hannah is going to tell you about her meal:
It all started with a bottle of Honest British steam lager, poured into a fun shaped tankard glass that could have only come from IKEA. I say this because I saw an empty box in the restaurant, not because I am that well versed in the full glassware range…
Anyway the lager was very drinkable – it wasn’t too hoppy which is good as it tends to fill me up much faster, and I definitely wanted to eat the meal I had ordered.
Speaking of which, I had the Honest burger which is made up of beef, red onion relish, smoked bacon, mature cheddar, pickled cucumber and lettuce, all packed into a sweet bun.
Served alongside the burger is a healthy serving of rosemary salted chips. And by healthy I don’t mean they are good for you!
I was pleased that the waitress asked me how I wanted my burger cooked, as despite being happy with it being pink, I know that other people prefer it to be well done instead of medium. Asking the customer is always the best option as it avoids any awkward customer service banter later down the line.
The burger was soft, and the bacon wasn’t fatty at all so it was nice and easy to eat. I enjoyed the sweet relish and bun, but I think I have a bit of a sweet tooth even when it comes to the savoury things in life.
There was a bottle of ketchup and mayonnaise on the table, but it would’ve been great to be able to try the chipotle mayonnaise or bacon ketchup that can be found on the menu for an extra cost.
Ultimately I’d give this meal a 7/10 – the ingredients were all good and the lager was lovely, but I feel like the burger could have been brought alive with a little spice, so I’ll know to spend the extra £1 for the chipotle mayo next time.
Now Sean is going to give you the run-down on his meal choice:
I’m all for local beers so the aptly-named Bethnal Pale ale, produced at Redchurch Brewery in East London, instantly caught my attention. As mentioned by Hannah, the drink was served with a small tankard, which I thought was a nice touch. With a fairly strong malt and hoppy flavour, the Bethnal is certainly one for those who like a bit of a kick to their drink; the 5.5% rating also means it is stronger than many other pale ales currently available.
I ordered the Cheeseburger for my main – there were three choices on offer for the cheese: Cheddar, Red Leicester or Stilton. Not being a fan of cheeses with excessive amounts of blue, I opted for the Cheddar – a safe, solid option with a flavour that worked perfectly.
When the meal arrived I was suitably impressed by the huge amount of flavoursome fries, particularly as they weren’t charged as an optional extra like a number of burger joints currently do. The burger itself was cooked medium to rare – it certainly had far more blood oozing from it than a medium cook would suggest.
The taste was a little on the sweet side for me, contributed to through a mixture of the copious onion relish and the choice of bun. This was by no means a bad flavour, just personal preference, and I’m sure many others would find this delicious. Unfortunately I did find a couple of hard pieces of gristle inside the meat itself which let down it’s otherwise soft complexion.
Overall I would give the Honest Burgers a 6.5 out of 10 – whilst I am a fan of soft burgers I think it was generally a bit TOO soft (gristle aside), whilst I would look at alternative options for the relish and choice of bun for those who perhaps don’t have such a sweet tooth.
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