11 Wellington Quay
This week saw the fourth installment of Burger Club. Now that we’ve started to establish ourselves a little, we’ve been inundated with suggestions for our next foray into the dirty world of burger reviews. This week came the turn of Wowburger. Originally the plan was for the four core members (the ‘Core Four’ as we shall henceforth be known, in my head at least) to meet up, but Amanda came down with lurgy, so we drafted in a last minute substitution for this outing. Amanda was, understandably devastated, but she had a doctors note, so we decided not to ban her just yet. Just.
Located upstairs in the Workman’s Club on Wellington Quay, Wowburger has been established for a little under 6 months now. Set in the beer garden, I’m certain this was a great idea in the middle of summer when it was warm and light, however in the depths of winter we were soon chased inside by the cold, and the prospect of no escape from the numerous smokers surrounding us as we prepared to eat. Sadly inside was also cold. Cold and super dark. Darker than outside in fact. The atmosphere wasn’t helped by the huge and noisy stag party that arrived just as we sat down. A restful atmosphere to linger over a meal with friends this is most certainly not. But we came to eat burgers. That’s what we do. So we did.
Getting down to it. Wowburger has a bare-bones menu. However there are a range of extra toppings you can add free of charge. Not many options, but I guess, when the burger is good that’s all you need. As it turns out, they were just OK. I’d say nothing to write home about, but then where would we be? Not sitting here working on a blog that’s for certain.
Ok, that’s probably a little unfair. I definitely polished off my whole burger. Each comes with a double patty which is clearly freshly made to order on-site and served on a brioche-style bun (which held up well to all of the extra toppings Rory managed to squeeze into his, and didn’t disintegrate like some others we have tried in the past). But I felt the whole burger was let down a little, firstly the buns came out squished down, like maybe someone with a grudge had punched them, and secondly the cheeseburger came with plastic cheese, which is totally fine, and totally has its place with burgers – that place being at Burger King, or a kids summer barbecue. But I think I kind of expected real cheese. The place gave me more of a “Serious about Serious Burgers” vibe when what we actually got was more “soakage before a heavy night” burger. Perfectly acceptable, and certainly filled a hangry hole in my stomach.
However. The absolute saving grace were the sides. Just to be certain, and nothing to do with greed, or hanger; between us we ordered all three options, plain, chilli and garlic butter. And for me, those garlic butter fries were a revelation! Skin on fries, soaked in garlic butter, just on the right side of both salty and garlicky, the butter topping leaving them crisp rather than soggy. I might not make a trip again out of my way for another burger, but I’d certainly consider a trek through rain and snow for more of those fries. The chilli fries were pretty good too. Both got polished off pretty quickly.
As with every place we go to, I also got a chocolate milkshake. This was thick and creamy and chocolatey, for me, better than Eddie Rockets, but not an opinion shared by Ryan, my fellow milkshake enthusiast, who holds the Rocket shake as a hallowed example unto to all others.
To sum up, given my (relatively minor) complaints outlined above, Wowburger isn’t a bad shout. For what you get it’s a little on the expensive side, but certainly not prohibitively so. If I were on a night out on that side of town and a few drinks in I’d definitely go back, but maybe not something I would want to make a special trip for. Except maybe for those fries… If I think about it hard enough I can still taste those fries…
Burgers – 6/10
Sides – 7/10
Service & Surroundings – 5/10
Overall Rating – 6/10