Best Burgers and Burger Joints in UK/Europe?
January 11, 2018 7:23 AM   Subscribe

Where are the favourite and/or most-interesting burgers or burger-selling establishments in the UK and Europe? What makes them loved and/or interesting?

I'll be spending most of the next 12 months (at least) living in the UK and travelling around Europe as much as possible. I'm a fanatic for cheeseburgers and I love building my travel plans around visits to restaurants and burger joints.

From roadside shacks to Michelin-starred bistros, I'll eat anywhere -- I like to try burgers that have an out-sized local reputation or cult fandom, burgers that have a gimmick or weird aspect, or burgers that are simply delicious. Messy burgers! Colourful burgers! Historic burgers! Burgers referenced in pop culture!

I'd also love to visit burger-selling restaurants with great stories, passionate chefs, unique atmosphere/decor or weird gimmicks. A burger joint that's hidden in an opera house, a restaurant with a loud & proud support for human rights, a cafe in an abandoned submarine or a vendor with a shack in a graffiti'd urban ruin, things like that...

I'm also interested in burger-focused competitions or festivals that may be on throughout the year.

I'm not exclusively after recommendations of the weird and wild or already-famous; I'd love to hear about your personal favourite place to eat a burger, and to know what makes it special for you.

And if you think of somewhere outside of Europe, don't hesitate to mention it here -- I'll see the entire world eventually, I hope!
posted by chudmonkey to Food & Drink (18 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
In Paris, Breakfast in America, and a food truck called Le Camion Qui Fume.
posted by ellieBOA at 7:37 AM on January 11, 2018

The original MeatLiquor in London is in the basement of a glorious brutalist car park that's about to be knocked down to make way for luxury something or other. Go while you can.
posted by corvine at 7:49 AM on January 11, 2018 [2 favorites]

You can't walk in London without running into a burger joint. The burger scene is super saturated for good or bad. Where I live there are no less than 4 burger joints visible from the Clapham Common tube stop.

I guess for interesting there's MEATliquor (East and central London specifically). The MEATmission in Hoxton is set in an old church and they have a crazy eating contest: eat chilli burger, chilli dog and chilli fries in less time than the top 10 contenders and you get your name on the wall of fame and your meal paid for and maybe a tshirt?

I'm partial for Honest Burger. They started out as this small thing in Brixton Village (a great place to check out for food) and completely blew up.They have like, 5 things on their menu and that's it. They have nice craft beer and amazing garlic fries. They use quality beef from Ginger Pig (one of my fave butchers) and make seasonal specials. Right now they have the Tribute Burger which is their interpretation of the McDonald's 99cent cheeseburger. It's pretty good.

The kimchi burger at Hawksmoor is delish and worth the hefty price tag imo.

It's a huge high street chain, but I like a Byron's burger. I love the soft bun and zucchini fries.

I haven't tried them but I have heard very good things about Patty & Bun and Dirtyburger and I really have no excuse not to have tried it yet as they are both literally around the corner from work. I'm serious, London is overwhelmed with burgers.

If you sign up for Mr. Hyde they will occasionally talk about the newest trendiest place to eat a burger.

If you have tried Shakeshack and Five Guys in America, do not bother with the London variants except for scientific purposes for comparison. They're fine but they're not as good.

And I'm gonna come off as a snob, but stick to London for burgers. The burger trend has taken over the entire UK but the best are mostly concentrated here.
posted by like_neon at 8:07 AM on January 11, 2018 [3 favorites]

Like_neon just beat me to Honest Burger. I was there at lunch. Delicious, great fries, great people. Usually they have a gin-based something as a special which works, though definitely not during the working day at lunch, oh no definitely not.
posted by giraffeneckbattle at 8:12 AM on January 11, 2018

Annie's Burger Shack in Nottingham is sort of legendary. They do a massive range of slightly eccentric burgers that are pretty good in my experience.
posted by pipeski at 8:27 AM on January 11, 2018 [3 favorites]

Annie's Burger Shack in Nottingham. Everything on the menu comes in meaty, veggie or vegan and the curly fries are amazing! They also do a monthly special burger.
posted by missmagenta at 8:33 AM on January 11, 2018 [1 favorite]

I live in Antwerp, Belgium, and I like the burgers at Ellis Gourmet Burger. They have multiple restaurants now both within the city and in other Belgian and Dutch places, so they became something of a chain store, but the burgers are very tasty nonetheless. (I became a vegetarian recently and still go there for the vegetarian burgers.)

For a pairing of a good burger and the best beers Belgium has to offer, Gollem's Beer and Burgers in Antwerp is excellent.
posted by Desertshore at 8:54 AM on January 11, 2018 [1 favorite]

In Belgium and France, there's Restaurant Quick. It's a chain filling the same need as McDonald's or Burger King, but of better quality. Obviously not gourmet, but they're tasty and convenient, and an excellent option when you're on the move. I'm especially partial to their Quick N Toast, which is one yummy mofo. Don't forget the mayo for the fries.
posted by Capt. Renault at 9:04 AM on January 11, 2018

Burgermeester in Amsterdam.
posted by neushoorn at 9:05 AM on January 11, 2018

In Sheffield, try Uncle Sam's. When I lived there in the '70's, it was literally the only place in the UK for a decent burger. It's still in the same location, and current ratings and reviews show that it is still up to par.
posted by ubiquity at 9:13 AM on January 11, 2018

It's a place you'll only probably be near for work (a lot for me) or a music festival (other people) but I really deeply enjoy having a burger at Café Polly Maggoo in Tilburg NL.

If you're in Amsterdam (more likely) Lombardo’s and Burgermeester are really very good, even if it's gotten a bit busy with long lines of tourists on the weekends.
posted by French Fry at 9:26 AM on January 11, 2018

I know it's not in your geographical range, but you did ask for elsewhere in the world, too, so here's my personal favorites in NYC:

Burger Joint - "Hidden" inside the Parker Meridien hotel. Solid burger, fun change of decor going from the hotel to the restaurant.

Shake Shack - They have these everywhere now, which is good because now you don't have to wait hours in line at Madison Square Park just to get one. Now you can go there, grab a beer immediately from the 'B' line, and then stand in the 'A' line to order your food while drinking in the park. You don't often get to drink in parks in NYC.

Minetta Tavern - Their Black Label burger is phenomenal. It literally melts in your mouth and is soooo good. Which it damn well better be for $30USD.

Brindle Room - I hesitate to put this on here, because I pretend* like it's my little secret and I only bring friends visiting from out of town that I *really* like here. But I guess metafilter counts as people I *really* like. This is the best burger I've ever had, full stop. Every time I go there, I say the same thing to people I am bringing. And then, upon arrival, I am struck with terror that maybe it's only that good in my memory, and it's not actually going to be as good, and ohmigod my friend is going to hate it and.... then it arrives, and I am amazed anew at the awesomeness that is their burger.
posted by Grither at 9:53 AM on January 11, 2018

In Edinburgh, The Southern, Holyrood 9A or The Red Squirrel. All do a great burger menu and great beers with a good local selection. Try the venison and haggis! Holyrood 9A particully well-positioned if you need a rest after climbing up and around Arthur's Seat.

In Trondheim, Norway - Super Hero Burger

In Copenhagen, Jagger (3 locations)

And I can nth Annie's Burger Shack in Nottingham!
posted by sedimentary_deer at 10:57 AM on January 11, 2018

On the Dutch/German border, between Zevenaar and Elten, there is a restaurant called De Stempel. It used to be a border office. It serves burgers and pancakes and not much else; the pancakes are fine but the burgers are better. They come in meat or fish and they consist of real, non-spongy bread and a slab of good quality beef (Angus) or fish. They're served with thick fries and carrot/coleslaw.

It seems like an unlikely place for you to wash up, but if you do, don't miss out on De Stempel.
posted by Too-Ticky at 11:18 AM on January 11, 2018

like_neon: "It's a huge high street chain, but I like a Byron's burger. I love the soft bun and zucchini fries."

Byron exploited undocumented immigrants and then turned them into the authorities, if worker treatment and ethics matters to you. I personally wouldn't eat there.

If you head to Scotland, James vs Burger has the Glasgow and Edinburgh burger scene pretty well covered. You can't move for burger joints in either city.
posted by Happy Dave at 11:31 AM on January 11, 2018 [1 favorite]

Birmingham, OPM - Original Patty Men. Life doesn't end at London.
posted by AFII at 12:24 PM on January 11, 2018

Buenos Aires has had a ton of hipster-y and very delicious burger spots pop up in the last few years (I guess a natural partner to their steak) -- I would definitely add to your list of future travel spots!
posted by kylej at 4:24 PM on January 11, 2018

(Happy Dave It does to me and thank you for bringing it to my attention)
posted by like_neon at 1:39 AM on January 12, 2018 [1 favorite]

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