It has been a big month for burgers. Internationally it seems that consumers have shifted a tad to the side of convenience and more to the realms of conscious (hallelujah). Igniting to new levels the ever competitive pace of Hong Kong in the food and bev industry, three new burger outlets, by three of Hong Kong's most prominent restaurant groups, have opened within 1km of one another. Check them out, and then let us know which one is your favourite.
One from Black Sheep Group (Motorino, Carbone, Ho Lee Fook, La Vache), these guys are hitting goal after goal with the big hitting flavours they are bringing in from Vietnam to France, and more recently, the US. They hope with Burger Circus (or Burgus, as we have affectionally homogenised), are going to be all about a menu.Circus Classic (HKD70), a 5oz beef patty with lettuce, tomato and Circus sauce keeps it simple while the Whole Show (HKD98) is a 5oz beef patty, fried egg, American cheese, pickled beetroot, onions, lettuce, tomato and spicy mayo. Burger Circus’ Fried and Side dishes showcase irresistible diner staples such as crisp, golden Onion Rings (HKD38) and cream cheese-filled Jalapeno Poppers.
We have tried the American Acrobat, which is a classic with cheese, and we thoroughly enjoyed, given the ideal ratios of meat to cheese to bread to veg in our books. It might be befitting to the less-carnivorous, but we think the wide patties which are well suited to caramelisation (thank you Maillard reaction) but less dense meat are what we should all be consuming when in the mood for some burger love. Akin to the Shake Shack sandwich and ethos, this might rank as our favourite in town at the moment. Helped along by the APPLE PIE SHAKE and boozy cinnamon whiskey spiked CINNAMON ROLL SHAKE (yes we're shouting).
Price Point: All burgers are under $100, even the doubles.
Location: 22 Hollywood Rd
No longer the far flung meat concept group they began as, Butchers Club have slowly but steadily creeped their way into our 'hoods and lives, unsuspectingly drawing us in with the lure of their outstanding quality meat and flavours.
There have been mixed reports of the Central outlet as compared to their dependable Wanch branch, with consistency being raised a few times. However, given they are new still, everybody could do with exercising some graciousness as they find their feet and more importantly, burger flippers.
Butchers Club differentiate their hamburger through use of dry aged meat they're famous for, using the brand of dry-aged Black Angus beef from New South Wales, Australia. The patties are also minced fresh to order in front of the customer, before being thrown back to the kitchen and grilled to a perfect medium; nice and pink in the middle.
Price Point: $100
Location: Suite A, Ground Floor Sunwise Building, 112-114 Wellington Street
Using the double barrelled approach of burgers and sex and exploding the minds of 19-year-old-males city wide, DD are of the Maximal Concepts brand (Blue Butcher, Limewood etc) and therefore of creative concepts and with a driving force of talented chefs across their network of restaurants to draw inspiration from. The hoarding of beautiful women perhaps also helped....
They are opening officially from 24th Feb (and offering free burgers from 6pm for the first who claim them), and we have had a wee peek of their menu, which is seeking simple but ingredients focused gourmet burgs. We are especially excited by the 'Double D', two grassfed beef patties, sharp aged cheddar and Double D sauce, the 'Chicken', a luscious combination of double fried buttermilk chicken, handcut smoked bacon, Monterey Jack cheese and a garlic and jalapeno aioli, and the 'Big Fish Mac', a beer battered dish fillet, coleslaw and homemade tartare, that uses all sustainable products. They also keep sending photos of gorgeous people who are scantily clad, due to the obvious similarities between abs and burgers.
They've been pitted to keep open all night long, and so we can imagine this is what Saturday night might look like henceforth:
Price Point: Double D $120, Big Fish Mac $90 and Chicken $80
Open: 24th Feb 2015
Location: 22 Wellington Street