When anyone mentions “Byron”:https://www.byronhamburgers.com/, I immediately think of George Osborne. You may remember an infamous tweet of him working late the night before the 2013 Comprehensive Spending Review when he included a photograph of him eating a burger. The Sun derided him for being a posh-burger – this was no McDonalds 99p job, it was from Byron and cost £6.75.
In the intervening 5 years, I’ve not been to either Byron or McDonalds, but when a friend who’s particularly partial to a burger, suggested a Byron lunch on the Strand, I was more than happy to give it a go. I wasn’t sure how busy it would be at lunch time, so I booked a table just in case: but on arrival at 12.15pm, it was empty, and I had the choice of tables – although it did quickly busy up.
The table for two was small and with the tray of condiments, a bottle of wine in a chiller and four glasses (tap water and wine), there wasn’t much room left for plates. The only positive is that we were on a single strip of tables along a wall rather than those in the middle of the room which were virtually adjoined to another.
I was quite tempted by the vegetarian burger (Portobello mushroom and goat’s cheese) but thought I really ought to try a meaty version and we both ordered a cheese burger. They didn’t come with chips which had to be ordered separately. The waiter suggested sharing one portion, but we went against his advice and we were glad we’d ordered two.
The burgers were delicious and the bun fresh and stuffed with shredded iceberg, thinly sliced pickles, onion, cheese, mustard and a Byron sauce (which having asked was ketchup, mayonnaise and chopped gherkins). The chips were the thin McDonald’s type and served on the side in what I always describe a metal plant pot.
Although we were quite full we shared an ice cream and had a scoop each of vanilla and strawberry; the latter was exceptional and actually tasted of fresh strawberries.
With a bottle of wine, the bill came to £55. Not quite the price of a McDonald’s Happy Meal.
If you’d like to try a Byron Burger, you ought to go soon: in January it was announced they’re closing 20 of their branches.