Thursday was the third ‘National Burger Day‘ – a collaboration between Mr Hyde and Big Eater. In celebration of the humble burger, they took over Street Feast at Dalston Yard for the evening. Instead of the usual variety of street food on offer at Street Feast, there were burgers everywhere you looked – with 18 sliders on offer from some of Londons top burger joints (and one American!), as well as two burger inspired desserts. Oh and a couple of bars featuring Kozel lager, Jose Cuervo Chillibacks (bleurgh!) and Jameson Picklebacks (double bleurgh!).
Now you won’t yet have picked up on this, but I am OBSESSED with burgers. So much so that this was very nearly a burger blog. In fact, I might actually start a stand alone burger blog. But I digress.
So you can probably guess how much I was looking forward to this. And how I may have lusted over the menu a couple of times in advance. And possibly checked which burgers on offer were special dishes for this event and which could be ordered anytime. Because, to narrow down my options, I wanted my choices to be ones I couldn’t have just any time. If I want a Green Chilli Cheeseburger Soaker from Dip & Flip, I could pop down the road and get one whenever I like (and believe me, it takes all my willpower not to, although I admit it’s the double bacon cheeseburger which is my Dip & Flip burger of choice). So there wasn’t much point ordering one at the event really.
My first burger was from B.O.B.’s Lobster – the ‘B.O.B.s burger’ (40 day dry-aged patty, jamón ibérico, sauce foyot, jamón dust) at £6 (you could add lobster for £4 – I didn’t). It was amazing. Possibly my favourite burger of the night, which surprised me since they don’t usually do burgers! Beautifully cooked, with top notch ingredients. Even the bun stood out. And they provided a little branded wet wipe which was thoughtful. Well played.
Next up was one I hadn’t been planning on (as it had been their special not long ago), the ‘Karma Cola Burger’ (Ginger Pig – isn’t Ginger Pig everywhere at the moment? – dry-aged beef patty, Karma Cola braised short rib, smoked Applewood cheddar, house pickles, green chilli coleslaw and braised cola gravy) from Honest Burgers, but my friend bought me one without telling me, and who am I to turn down a good burger? I was glad I didn’t. It was meaty, filling and delicious. I’m not normally a fan of extra meats on my burger, unless it’s bacon or an extra patty, but this was really good! The short rib was so tender, although I couldn’t really identify any cola in the flavour. It was priced at £6.
My next choice was Le Bun‘s offering – the ‘Foie Gras and Summer Truffles’ (aged brisket and chuck patty, foie gras and shaved summer truffle, truffled beef jus and American cheese). At £7.50 this was the priciest option at the event and I’m sad to say it just wasn’t to my taste. If you’re a fan of foie gras you may have felt differently. I thought if anyone could convert me to being a foie gras lover it would be my favourite street food eatery, but even they couldn’t manage it. So after a couple of bites my friend took over with this one. The truffles did however give a lovely flavour to the rest of the ingredients.
To make up for my disappointment at Le Bun, my friend bought me the ‘Donald Trump’ (aged beef patty, bourbon and vanilla BBQ sauce, grilled onions, American cheese and pickles) from Lucky Chip. And it was so, so good. To be honest, it was the bourbon vanilla sauce which made this burger, it was sweet and delicious but overpowered the rest of the flavours. I’m not complaining though, I’d order this one again if it appeared on their regular menu! It was the messiest burger I tried though! The Donald Trump was priced at £6.
Now by this point I was at bursting point, but I couldn’t resist a little taster of two others my friend ordered!
Hotbox is a restaurant I’ve been meaning to try for a while, so I was really happy to try their £5 (bargain!) ‘Piggy Burger’ (dry-aged beef patty, American cheese, pulled pork collar, white onion, crunchy pickle and scotch bonnet BBQ sauce). As you can probably guess, this burger was HOT! It was good, but there was a definite kick from the scotch bonnet sauce, and I was glad I wasn’t having a whole one! It’s left me more keen to pay the restaurant a visit.
The final burger was the ‘Toddy Shop Slider’ from Chai Ki (dry-aged beef and pork patty, bacon chilli chutney, kasundi mustard, smoked cheddar), which I was interested to try because Chai Ki aren’t a burger restaurant. they’re a toddy shop serving Bombay style food. And you could tell from their offering. It was a decent burger, my only complaint was the bun. The bun to burger ratio was off. Noone wants extra bun! And it was just a bap. If they’d put a bit more effort into something as simple as a bun they’d have been able to hold their own. What I did like was that the patty had a little bit of spice to it, it was a little bit different (as well as being the only burger on offer combining beef and pork in the patty). And they were generous with the cheese. It wasn’t at all bad for £5. Especially since they were giving away free cocktail vouchers and little pineapple and masala shots with the burgers too!
Obviously, despite being full of burgers, I had to get desserts. I mean, who could resist when they look like this?
Seriously, Crumbs & Doilies stole the show with these burger cakes. Just read the descriptions…
Possibly predicatably, I went for the ‘Filthy Burger Combo’, although after eating it I wished I’d tried both options. It was quite possibly one of the best desserts I’ve ever eaten. And I’ve eaten a lot of desserts.
I was pretty impressed with how burger like they actually made it look!
As well as all the food on offer, there was beer bobbing, burger piñatas, a pickle eating contest… It was such a fun evening!
If you weren’t one of the lucky ones to get a ticket to the event (£15 in advance which included one of each of the featured drinks), you could still celebrate National Burger Day with 20% one of the numerous participating burger restaurants nationwide.
I’d definitely recommend it for next year!
All photos my own.