Burgers are cool. They just are. Every menu, who’s any menu, has a burger on it. They are the food of the moment and have been for about five years now… We have seen a huge procession of burger outlets pop up on every corner of every high street. But are they any good? Well, word on the street is that Honest Burgers is the best burger in London. And on Friday we went to find out if it was true.
Walking through the clamouring energy of Brixton market puts you in the right frame of mind for Honest burgers. Endless stalls selling wares as diverse as the shoppers themselves. Fruit, wigs, jewellery, you name it, Brixton market has it. Once you round the corner, Brixton village calls out to be entered. And I know there is goodness harboured under its canopy.
If you want ‘the best burger in London’ then you have to be prepared to get in, eat, and get out because there’ll be a queue of hungry people waiting in line baying for your blood if you make them wait. Not many places have this kind of clout but when the likes of Jay Rayner are espousing the virtues of a place, the masses will queue indefinitely for a burger. And queue we did, albeit momentarily. The staff were friendly and welcoming and quickly set a table for us and even made room for our pram, which was a rather unhelpful size for the dimensions of the restaurant. There is no need to take your time over the menu, it is refreshingly simple in it’s approach. The approach being, you’ve come here for a burger, now choose a burger. None of this pandering to the people rubbish, if you don’t want a burger, don’t go to a burger joint.
A giant blackboard covered one wall of the restaurant with a large map of the menu, another wall was hung with steer horns and the tiny open kitchen was somehow squeezed in amongst all of this and all of us, prams and all. Enamel plates hold the wonderful burgers, which are laid out on a simple sheet of paper. The menu generally seems to have 4 or 5 burgers and a special. Bil (Brother in law) and I decided to go for the special which was a beef pattie with chipotle slaw, griddled courgettes and Monterey jack cheese. All burgers come with a-mazing thrice cooked chips which are then tossed in rosemary salt. I would go back just for the chips and that was before I’d even taken a bite of the burger. There were lots of little crispy chip bits, which are my favourite, I love them so much, I was actually snatching them off my family’s plates.
And then I tried the burger. Drum roll please…. It was very, very good. What I liked about it is there is no messing with the meat, it simply tasted of pure, unadulterated, meaty goodness. They have the option of a gluten free bun which was perfect for Little Chef. The chipotle slaw was delicious but…not really a slaw, more like a chutney or relish but tasty nonetheless. Burgers are cooked medium rare and delightfully pink. Now, this was a very good burger. The only thing I regret a little is that I didn’t have the signature Honest burger, I adore bacon and feel like I missed out. But there’s always next time… This is the kind of place I would go back to again and again. And with the burgers coming in at roughly £9 including chips, it’s light on the wallet if not on the hips! Best burger in London? Hmm, I’m not sure, I haven’t eaten every burger in London but it is definitely an incredibly strong contender.