Roast to Go, Borough Market, London

Amazing crust, juicy middle, delicious burger sauce. Simple burger well executed.

Burger source

The takeaway service of the very famous Borough Market institution, Roast, has a lot to live up to. I’ve not heard anyone experience Roast without singing its praises, though I’m yet to sample its wares in person… I will need to add it to the list. But, thanks to Uber Eats, it was an extremely efficient delivery option for a work burger lunch. The menu’s extremely limited, but Roast’s conceit is fine meat, finely prepared, finely cooked.

The order

The ‘Borough burger’ features a 30% fat 6oz meat patty, melted cheese, thick sliced pickle, tomato, lettuce and red onion on a semi-brioche bun.

The meat of it

Even delivered, this is a solid burger. Robust, yet somehow soft and inviting – a set of adjectives that only really makes sense when you’ve spent as much time thinking about burgers as I have.

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And on first bite – wow. A crisp shell on the patty gives way to a juicy, perfectly medium patty; still inviting after the journey over on the bike, but not threatening the bun at all with dripping – this is not a messy burger.

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The seasoning is savoury and inviting, the pickle sharp, sweet and a marvellous textural contrast. The salad accoutrements are a perfect, fresh complement to the savoury sensation the rest of the burger, and the semi-brioche adds a pliant hint of sweetness, not overwhelming, but holding the stack together perfectly. The burger sauce, largely mayonnaise, though clearly heavily accentuated, was sweet/salty perfection. It took an act of will not to eat this faster.

My only criticism – and it is hunting for flaws – is that the burger could possibly have been even juicier. But I suspect this is a factor of it being a takeaway rather than a flaw in the preparation.

I spotted that the recipe for this burger was in the wild as part of the promo for the Roast cookbook, so try to make it at home if you’re so inclined.

Monkey finger rating

Bun –  4.5/5
Build – 5/5
Burger – 4.5/5
Taste –  4.5/5
Sides – n/a
Value – 4.5/5 – £8.50  for the burger plus a share of delivery.

Burger rating – 4.5/5 – there’s really very little to fault in this marvellous burger specimen. I want to have it again in the restaurant!

The deets

Roast 2 Go is available via Uber Eats and Deliveroo in SE1, or pop down to Borough Market – The Floral Hall, Stoney Street,  London SE1 1TL.

Breakfast and burgers, 106 Leadenhall Street, London

Delicious, none-too-heavy burger, tasty even when delivered by Uber Eats

Burger source

Says the website:

“Our burgers are made from 28 day aged grass fed Scottish beef & made fresh daily. Our patties are custom blended, cooked to order & served with lettuce, gherkin, tomato, red onion garnish & our chef’s homemade burger sauce. All our beef patties are 5oz, hand made daily & cooked from fresh…”

I first encountered this restaurant when I needed a lunch venue near a client’s office on Leadenhall Street to meet The Bond, one-time guest blogger on this very blog. I remember it being awesome at the time but was too distracted by my mission to lure the Bond back to the employ of my company (mission: success) that I didn’t give the food the time enough for a review.

The day after the second general election in two years, and thanks to the assist of Uber Eats, we gave it another try.

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Burger lovers loving burgers – my team (plus the Bond) settle down to tuck in

The order

My order? A cheese & bacon burger – simples. We shared a few sides of fries between the 9 of us who were hitting up Breakfast & Burgers on this occasion (a few of us had been up late watching updates from the political craziness). Nothing too fancy. A few people went for the chicken, non-bacon variants, and Bondie had the chilli burger (“just the right level of heat”).

The meat of it

Despite being on the back of a bike for 15 minutes whirling through central London (an entirely faff-free process, with Uber Eats, once I figured out the limitations of the app), the burgers arrived warm and well packaged. Unfurling the wax wrapper revealed a handsome stack; a large slice of tomato, pickle and salad topped the burger, (as well as the cheese and bacon), itself surprisingly intact within a large brioche bun.

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Seriously, that pink is so perfect, this burger could have been Sous Vided

The cross section revealed a PERFECT pink, beautifully medium burger. The 5oz patty meant it wasn’t overwhelmingly drippy but the coarse-ground, loosely packed patty was perfect for what it was – well-seasoned quality beef. The slightly greedy man in me likes a slightly higher fat ratio, which might have been solved by getting the double burger on the menu… but it was lunchtime! So wasn’t going to be that indulgent. The bacon and cheese was a nice complement, though not overwhelming, and the burger sauce further added to the savoury bite. The bun and amazingly fresh vegetables were the sweet and crisp counterpoint to the umami-ness of the burger… all in all, it was perfectly balanced.

The fries, which never travel well – particularly not thin-cut french fries – were PERFECTLY seasoned, fairly large portions (they’d have to be at £2.75 a pop), and well fried – still crisp despite cooling rapidly from the trip. Remember them being equally impressive in store.

Sadly we didn’t opt for any other sides – will have to save those for a return trip to B&B.

Monkey finger rating

Bun –  4/5 – slightly oversized for the patty
Build – 5/5
Burger – 4.5/5 – bit more juice welcomed, but perfectly cooked
Taste –  4.5/5
Sides – 4.5/5

Value – 5/5 – <£10  for the burger and (admittedly shared) sides – which for a lunchtime indulgence, delivered, seemed pretty reasonable.

Burger rating – 4.5/5 – All in all, this really is a very special burger, from a very special little restaurant. It’s even better in-store, when its served in a basket, diner style. No frills, no thrills, but no spills either. Too tasty to wastey.

The deets

106 Leadenhall Street – a short walk from Liverpool Street. Also served via Uber Eats! Was with us within 15 minutes of being collected. And, once they hit the bike, you can track the burgers in real time…

 

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Pamella sets off on her cross-river odyssey with our precious cargo

 

Tommi’s burger joint, Battersea – Deliveroo review

An impressive burger, given it was delivered. But what is with that (lack of) sauce? And HOW much, you say?

Burger source:

An Icelandic import, the Eponymous Tommi has a 30+ year history of burger restauranting, and has clearly been a success, expanding across Europe in that time. Due to open his third restaurant in London, it is clearly doing well on these shores as well. Little is said about his culinary ambitions for the burger itself, but it is clearly high quality meat. The rest is shrouded in mystery – at least, until I actually go to a restaurant and ask someone about it.

The reason we discovered Tommi’s Burger Joint is simple: having used Deliveroo a couple of times, I got hit with an e-marketing email from them promoting the new Deliveroo only restaurant in Battersea – in range of our office in Victoria on a chance Thursday. And so Friday lunch was booked in. Unlike previous reviews, therefore, this one wasn’t enjoyed with my usual Burger crew, but rather in the company of my sporadic co-blogger, Richard.

The order

We knew little of Tommi’s. The menu is simplicity itself, variations on burger, with options of cheese and bacon.  So, inevitably, we all went for the (somewhat overstated) “Special Offer of the Century with Cheese and Bacon” weighing in at £13.90 apiece, inclusive of a healthy portion of fries and a drink.

The meat of it:

This is a well constructed burger; there’s absolutely no doubting that. Even without discounting for the fact it was delivered, the (wax-wrapped then boxed) packaging meant restaurant-style presentation in a takeaway parcel. A perfect stack.

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The bun seems an egg-washed roll, holding up well to the rest of the burger with brioche-like glisten but none of the sweetness. The cheese was well-melted over a perfect medium burger, the lettuce was crisp despite the bike transport to us from Battersea, and the coarse-ground beef was loosely packed, juicy and well seasoned. The bacon was good, if not evenly distributed, and perhaps slightly ungenerously proportioned for the size of the (6oz?) patty. So far, so (mostly) great.

The letdown – and it’s possible this was my own fault for ignoring the extensive ‘sauce’ menu that makes the otherwise simple Tommi’s menu complex – was that the small amount of tomato sauce/relish (it’s not ketchup, it is red, and it’s not sweet) didn’t provide the necessary contrast to the juicy, savoury combination of bacon, burger and cheese. The mustard was sharp and felt a bit lonely without a companion sweet sauce. The result is a burger without the delightful contrast most burgers have of sweet and savoury, and left me feeling somewhat unsatisfied.

The sides: the fries (and having to discount for delivery here) were excellent, surviving the travel well. They were still significantly crisp and were well seasoned and tasty, but obviously wouldn’t stand up to  comparison to any decent fries had in store. They are definitely fries and not chips, like someone had turbo-charged McDonald’s french fries, but again… should have ordered sauce. And if I’m being harsh, other than they travelled well, there really wasn’t anything noteworthy about them at all. The sweet potato fries didn’t travel as well, had oddly intermittent chilli spicing, and (as sweet potato fries sometimes do) somewhat lacked the crisp moreishness of the regular fries.

Monkey finger rating

Bun – 4/5
Build – 5/5
Burger – 4/5
Taste – 3.5/5
Sides – 3.5/5
Value – 3/5. £20 – £13.90 for the ‘offer of the century’ felt a lot, especially as the burger feels incomplete without sauce – a further pound.

Burger rating – 3.5/5 – I’d definitely have Tommi’s again, but the next time I Deliveroo, it’ll be for Dirty Burger.

Bonus delivery review

Deliveroo is a challenging proposition. A delivery service, with connections with its restaurants but limited ability to provide service guarantees that I can think of. I’ve had orders from them before arrive significantly late and all they can do is offer vouchers (which, full disclosure, we used to reduce the cost of the offer of the century to about £8 a head). This time around, the delivery arrived within 10 minutes of the forecast window and the service (calls to confirm the order had been collected from the restaurant, and a further call when the delivery driver arrived at our secure building so we could pop down to collect it) was excellent. If they have a restaurant whose food you want to sample in range, I’d recommend it; even if their drivers can’t always be punctual, their excellent service goes a long way to mitigating any bad feeling you have about it.

The deets

Restaurants are plentiful in Iceland, but in London you need the Kings Road or Mayfair branches if you’re not in range of the Battersea Park Deliveroo store.