Thursday, 13 September 2012

Icelandic Burger Invasion - Tommi's Burger Joint, London, W1

It seems like almost every other day, there's a new burger joint/venture open up on the street of London. At this current saturated market of this glorified street food, do we really need any more of them? And just when I'm pondering about this , a new burger joint popped up round the corner from where I work. Quietly tucked away on Marylebone lane, a stone throw away from my favourite ramen-ya, Cocoro is this Icelandic burger venue, Tommi's Burger Joint.

Quite possibly not the most flamboyant and peacocked-up joint (take note MEATmarket and Meatliquor) but sometimes you don't need any of those unnecessary frivolity. But make no mistakes, the decor in this new vent is decidedly calculative. It is reminiscent of a grungy dirty burger bar that you'll find in downtown manhattan. It is so inconspicuous that you can simply walked past it without blinking. Once inside, the interior of exposed brick walls, wooden panelling, retro high stool and an ultra-cool and relaxed atmosphere further cementing this illusion.

The menu is written on a blackboard in chalk as well as on lots of brown cardboard and paper bags dotted around the counter. If all these looks a bit frantic, fret not cause the staff were friendly and helpful when attempted to place my order at the counter. Sensing my struggle, they quickly handed over a paper menu which makes the decision making so much easier.

The basic burger start from £5.30 and goes up to  £7.95 for the premium steak burger (£8.95 if you have it with cheese and béarnaise sauce). The steak burger consist of mince from rump, rib-eye and fillet, hence the beefed-up price. After some hesitation, I decided to treat myself and went for the steak burger with the extras, along with a portion of fries (£2.75).

Finding a suitable seat in this 25 covers joint, the wait began. It didn't lasted long as my basket of treats arrived just as I got comfortable.  

Glossy shining buns were revealed once the wrappers unfolded. As expected from any self-respected gourmet burger, glistening meat juice dribbled down the side of the buns, announcing a juicy patty in the waiting. The patty were rich with beefiness and had a really deep flavours, top quality meat were obviously used and it was indeed as juicy as it looked without the greasiness. Cooked to a medium-rare perfection, pink in the middle. It was a definitely a good basic burger. Like the venue itself, there wasn't any unnecessary accompaniments.  The only hiccup is the layers of whole lettuce leaves - my burger kept trying to do a runner with every bite, making the eating process ten-fold trickier.

The fries were good. Crispy and not an ounce of oily sheen in sight. Thoroughly enjoyed that but as ever, I'm more of a chunky chip man but that's just my personal preference.

So the final verdict. I'm still unsure whether there is room for yet another burger in the London overcrowded burger scene. Morever, with a higher price point than most street food version, will people be willing to pay premium price for the same top quality burger which you can now find in lots of street food venue such as Eat Street, Berwick Street etc.  And even with an excellent burger offering like Tommi's Burger Joint, it still remain to be seen.

Tommi's Burger Joint
58 Marylebone Lane

Tommi's Burger Joint on Urbanspoon
Square Meal

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