Gourmet Burger Kitchen

South Anne Street

Dublin 2

http://www.gbk.ie/

To the fine people of Gourmet Burger Kitchen, we must apologise. Here’s the awful truth.

You were not our first choice for the second meeting of Burger Club.

Full disclosure time. We’d actually arranged to meet up and go to Bunsen Burger, but when we got there the waiting time for a table was 30-40 minutes. We had nowhere to go and wait. It was cold. I don’t know what the exact temperature was but I’m going to conservatively guess it was around minus 100c, and despite wearing my stunning new parka (Penneys hun) my internal body temperature was approximately that of a Brunch bar. When faced with the prospect of standing around shivering for 40 minutes we had a very brief discussion and decided instead to walk the 100 yards down the road to Gourmet Burger Kitchen. We settled. We’re sorry, OK? Let’s put it behind us.

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Gourmet Burger Kitchen (GBK as it will henceforth be referred to) is a UK based chain and currently has 5 restaurants in Dublin. We visited the South Anne Street restaurant on a freezing cold Sunday night and were warmly welcomed and seated immediately. It’s a cool, clean, modern restaurant, very stripped back, wood, wood and more wood. Table; cutlery; napkin – no bollocks. The menu has some interesting sounding burgers on it, with toppings that you just know are going to taste amazing. Chorizo relish; habanero jam; smoked chilli mayo? Be still my aching saliva glands. Blue cheese sauce? Hashtag foodporn heart-eyes-emoji. Baconnaise?! I don’t know what baconnaise is, but I know I want it.

Back in 2001, three Kiwi guys set up the first Gourmet Burger Kitchen in London changing the burger scene forever. Now, with 5 restaurants in Dublin, we still pride ourselves on serving up a variety of crafted burgers, combining 100% grass fed Irish beef, with the freshest ingredients and sauces made from scratch, every day, in each GBK kitchen.

The Burgers:

Freshly prepared as you’d expect, served in a toasted sourdough bun. The actual patties aren’t huge, but they are chargrilled and have a wonderful smoky flavour that shines through all the adornments. The whole shebang does appear quite large when it first arrives at the table, but once you squish it all down you can easily get your mouth around it. The sourdough bun holds its shape well (and has a lovely chewy bite), which helps keep it all together, and you can actually eat these with your hands without Eddie Rockets-esque bun implosion and cheese sauce dribbling up your sleeves (although Amandadbc reported leakage issues). I had “The Don”, which boasts rocket, onion jam, baconnaise, American cheese, Gorgonzola, pickled onion and house mayo among its toppings. The salty Gorgonzola was an absolute joy, and really complemented the smoky taste of the burger. It did however overpower the rest of the toppings, most of which added little but lubrication.

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The Sides:

We didn’t order that much of a selection; 3 x skin-on chips, 1 x rosemary chips and a few dips (including the mysterious baconnaise). The skin-on chips were a big improvement on Eddie’s offering the previous week, but still not life-changing. The rosemary chips were the skin-on chips with some rosemary sprinkled on them. I don’t know why I was expecting anything different but I was a little crestfallen when they arrived. Also I’m not convinced rosemary works on chips. Roast potatoes certainly, but chips? The habanero dip had a pleasing kick but it didn’t really go with anything. And finally, the baconnaise. Yeah. It was like…. imagine coleslaw. Now imagine it tasted like Bacon Fries. Sounds nice huh? If you answered yes you’re a pervert and you don’t deserve nice things. Now I’ve sampled baconnaise I have little desire to repeat the experience.

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The Shakes:

A pleasant surprise. At least on par with milkshake-benchmark Eddie Rockets, served in the same massive stainless steel tumblers, thick and delicious. The chocolate malt (my standard order) had actual chocolate chips in it, which was like a little chocolatey prize every time I had a sip. The salted caramel was passed around and oohed and aahed over like a new handbag.

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Value:

Burger, chips and a soft drink will come in at about €17. Not cheap, but not unreasonable.

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Conclusion:

A vast improvement over last week’s and a new leader. The burgers were delicious, the toppings tasty and tangy, and condiments portioned appropriately so that they don’t dribble everywhere. That chewy sourdough bun helped in that regard too, holding together in the face of moisture where a cheap soft white bun would fall apart faster than Adam Sandler’s career. They were perhaps just a little on the small side however, and I must mention the service which was not the best. Staff seemed to be actively avoiding making eye contact with us and I virtually had to rugby tackle someone to get the bill. All in all however a very satisfying meal (and I’m glad Bunsen was fully booked).

Burgers – 9/10

Sides – 8/10

Service & Surrounds – 6/10

Overall Rating – 7.5/10

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Food sampled:

“The Don” burger

Taxi Driver burger

Smoking Joe burger

Taxi driver burger.

Skin-on fries / rosemary fries.

Various dips and milkshakes.