Honesty is a fine thing these days, in a time when seemingly everyone lies.
It’s fashionable to expose those in power as liars and dishonest tyrants. On the subject of food, especially meat, beef scandals have been rife this last year. To name a food haunt ‘Honest Burger’ is a big enough ‘come and try it you think you’re ‘ard enough’ statement in itself. The perfectly crisp rosemary and sea salt chips are just a piss take.
This particular Honest Burger is situated within the deepest depths of Brixton Market. The atmosphere, even on a Sunday, was buzzing like Albert Square on a Christmas special. The fragrant steam of coffee and scoff swirled around the small congregation gathered outside what looked to be a small quaint, bistro-esq establishment.
No forward booking. Slightly irritating the day prior, especially when your partner in crime is an organised so-and-so. However, once we arrived, it just added to the cocky “Yeah, you want to eat here? Cool. Yeah just wait over there and we’ll blow your mind when we can”. Normally this sort of approach would aggravate….not now, not this night (think that’s a ‘Titanic’ quote).
We went and grabbed a coffee and half an hour later received a text from one of the waiters (he had a moustache, course he did) saying ‘“Yo, come and eat”. Which we loved, for some reason.
On to the food. The menu was simple. This was good. We both opted for the cheeseburger with bacon and rosemary sea salt chips. They were with us and taking our drink order within 5 minutes. Enough time to lap up the heavy atmosphere.
We ordered fresh lemonade and a glass of red wine. Drinks were slightly pricey but served in what looked like WW2 mugs and paint pot. This all seemed to make it OK.
When the food arrived it all made sense. Sweet with a healthy crunch to the bun. Down through the oh so fresh lettuce. Teeth then brushed on the rich sauce and caramelised onions into the cheesy bacon then smoothly through the beef and back out of the other side. Easy. Each taste had its own story to tell. The stories short, but charming – like Beatrix Potter.
It lasted no longer than 7 minutes alongside the perfectly crunchy and warm rosemary chips. Washed down with the fruity shiraz and the refreshing lemonade. The bill came to under £30. Burgers being £9 each including the bacon and an extra £2.99 for the chips. Drinks slightly unreasonably bumping it up a further £8 but more than happy to take that hit.
Trendy, cool, nonchalant, blasé, ‘whatever’….words that normally irritate the average London based eater who is looking to gain value for their empty tummy in these tough times. These words, in this instance, resonated well with us for one reason. It was honest.
Hungry? Take a look at the Honest Burger site here.
Words by our Playmate: Alfie Sharman