Tag Archives: good burger venues in London

Guerilla Burger, 36 James Street, Marylebone, W1U 1EA

Rather wet behind the ears to both blogging and twitter, I was delighted to wangle El G and I an invite to Guerilla Burgers for their “skaters” night last night, involving very small taster burgers, crinkle chips, beer (or in my case pinot grigio dahling) and freeness.  As my first free meal as a blogger, I will be forever nostalgic (and as a Scot nothing makes me happier than something I don’t have to pay for) but etiquette requires me to caveat my enthusiasm with the fact that this was a great big PR stunt.  And as such I reckon it worked very well –  it appears that many of London’s food bloggers were there and if they wanted to create a buzz they certainly did. 

Spot the food blogger

Guerilla Burgers is part of the Giraffe family (gorilla, giraffe?) – which may put some people off, but personally my favourite breakfast in the world, ever, is made by Giraffe – huevos rancheros with a bloody mary on the side.  Sweat-inducing vitamin-laden hangover-cure goodness.

It’s the newest addition to London’s burgeoning burger scene – along with the likes of Byron Burger, Gourmet Burger Kitchen, Grand Union, etc.  Along with non-Spanish tapas, burger joints seem like the new big thing – a result of Americanisation or because the burger is the ultimate guilty pleasure

The venue is cool – Americano diner-style with pop art murals and extra friendly smiley staff (although go easy on that, we’re still British y’know).  The huge windows will make it lovely, light and airy in the summer and its location behind Selfridges on the edge of Marylebone would make it the perfect spot for post-shopping lunches

The menu looks pretty good – unashamedly Americano with “slaw salad”, hotdogs, fish tacos, burgers, beers and milkshakes.   We only got a taster of the food but what we got was great.  Mini burgers with juicy patties; with salad, tomato relish and tarragon sauce on the side.  I think the idea is that most people take the stuff inside their burgers OUT before eating – but I’m the kind of person who piles it all IN so I’d have been happy for the salad and sauces to come inside the burger.  Anyway, the burgers were tasty and I loved the tarragon sauce (and French’s mustard!).  The sides of crinkle chips were good and girls will definitely go for the sweet potato chips which were sweet and light. 

All in all, we only got a taste of the place, but certainly enough to want us to come back for more.  And if anyone else wants to give me more free things then please feel free!

Etiquette stopped me from drinking the tarragon sauce and licking the plate.  Just.

Guerilla Burgers on Urbanspoon

My Search for the best burger in London – The Criteria

Right, as you know, one of my NY resolutions was to find the perfect burger in London (nom nom nom), an idea thought up while stuffing my face in Grand Union.  Burgers make me happy and the The Happiness Project London is all about focusing on what makes you happy, so it fits in nicely with the theme of the blog (sadly, turns out not to be an original idea – many London guides and food bloggers appear to have done the same thing – Byron is often crowned ultimate winner).  In any case, I still eat at least one burger a month so thought it worth adding my shiny tuppence to the debate.

My search could only start when I lost my Christmas holiday weight and this is now done (ish).  So burgers here we come 🙂

The Venues

I will review about one burger joint a month – interspersed with gym visits and salads – otherwise I’m likely to do the Brussels expat (going up 2 dress sizes through over-eating of red meat).  So, the winners are likely to be crowned at the end of the year.

I’m not a food snob, so I’m including junk-food outlets as well as restaurants – partly because I’m dying to try Wimpy again and partly because it wouldn’t be a complete tour of London burgers otherwise.  My current list of places to review is below.  I may add to this as and when I hear about other places, or for example if I decide to try a burger when eating out in a non-specialist venue:

  1. Grand Union (review here)
  2. Byron (review here)
  3. Gourmet Burger Kitchen (review here)
  4. Hamburger Union
  5. The Diner
  6. The Hawksmoor
  7. Goodman
  8. Hache
  9. Wimpy
  10. McDonalds (review here)
  11. Burger King (review here)
  12. American Bar at the Stafford Hotel
  13. Automat American Brasserie
  14. Ed’s Diner
  15. The Fine Burger Co
  16. Ultimate Burger
  17. Lucky 7
  18. Bacchus

Any other suggestions are always welcome, although please be considerate to the fact that I can only eat so many burgers a month before having to wear my jeans with an elasticated waist. 

The criteria

– I will always order a plain cheeseburger (quarterpounder/whopper with cheese) and chips, with ketchup and mayonnaise.  If there’s coleslaw (yum) I’ll take it too otherwise no extras. 

– If they ask me do I want to supersize it, I say for god’s sake NO.

– I will judge each burger on the following:

  • the burger itself – size, shape, texture, beefiness
  • the bun –  deduction of points for those that fall apart under relish pressure 
  • the cheese – nothing fancy thanks, just cheddar or even (sorry) plastic
  • sauces – I love ’em – relish, mayonnaise, anything really
  • the “extras” – tomato, lettace, onion
  • ability to hold in hands/not smother over chin – Grand Union and GBK please note I see the ability to actually hold your burger as a necessity for getting in the prize-winning categories

The Prizes

Prizes will be awarded in the following categories:

1. Best burger in London

2. Best burger-tasting dining experience in London

3. Best ketchup receptacle in London

 UPDATE 31 August 2010: My search has been rather slow and I am long overdue a trip to Byron. Sadly however I have put on 5 pounds since starting to write about great places to eat, so I’m currently concentrating on coffee shops, but promise to return to boigers soon!