Burger Shack: How to eat a burger

Shucks! What are you doing with fork & spoon? Throw them away! The real way to eat a delicious burger, is to use your hands! First, press down and flatter the bun, stuff back all the ingredients that dropped out, and use both hands, yes bare hands with no napkins, or wrapper. Picked up the burger and take a breathe in; just like how people swirl and sniff their wine.

Okay now, the glorious moment; take your first tentative bite – open your mouth as wide as you can, and sink your teeth into the bun, then taste the ingredients, and then the meat, followed by the bun again. Yum! And finish the whole burger in one mouthful!

We queued up and ordered from the counter when everyone arrived; there was seven different burgers to choose from, with the typical add-ons like cheese, bacon, and egg.  My friend ordered the BBQ pulled pork burger ($6.20), the pork strips were actually quite tasty, but the bun was too hard. And oh yes, note that all the price stated are just the burger only, you need to add on $3.50 (or $2.50 for students) for a set with fries and drink.

The Thai Chili burger ($6.20) was sweet-meet-spicy; a piece of deep fried chicken patty was drizzled with spicy sweet sauce  Fancy a Zinger?

It is the must-have for every burger joint on their menu, how can they not have the King Ramlee burger? Unfortunately, Burger Shack’s Ramli ($6.20) is a very poor rendition of the famous street burger. Even Relish’s version was better. In place of the sweet chili sauce, they used a sambal sauce which wasn’t really spicy, and Ramlee’s all about the generous sweet chili with lots of barbecue sauce. And instead of wrapping the patty within the omelette, they merely placed the sunny side-up above the beef patty.

Another chicken, the J-burger ($6.20) with okonomiyaki sauce.

The Grilled Chicken ($5.70) was pretty decent with a tender flamed-grilled chicken fillet. Pity about the hard buns though.

Omph, I was excited by the prospect of having melted cheese on top of a medium rare beef patty with a pink tinge in the middle. Delicious right?

Except it wasn’t the case.

There’s the Original ($5.70) and the Double ($7.70) to choose from, and I had add-on cheese for $1.50 too. And I feel cheated that the cheese wasn’t melted. The beef patty was also much smaller than expected, and I hate to say this – even Botak Jone’s burger had melted cheese and better fries.

Nowadays I seldom check out new restaurants immediately when they are just opened. It’s like nurturing a plant; you need to water it regularly, give it nutrients and let it have sufficient sunlight to grow. The same goes for a new restaurant, there are bound to be hiccups initially so we need to give them time to improve the service and tweak the menu.

Three things I don’t like about Burger Shack: the noisy sound system as they use mic to call out the orders that are ready. As much as I understand that the self-service system helps them to keep the price competitive, but I couldn’t help feeling irritated, and it had the whole-fast-food-restaurant-vibe. The interior has a poor air ventilation – we smell like burgers after finishing dinner. And the food can really be better; the fries were cold, some of the burger buns were all right, but some were over toasted and too hard.

But I still think Burger Shack will do well. Students adored Island Creamery and you bet they will hopped by Burger Shack which is less than 5 minutes walk across the road.

I’m still in the mood for burger even though Burger Shack wasn’t too impressive, Smok’Inn Frogz’s still the one to beat, and for the same price range there’s Hotshots. Next up: Swiss Butchery, Sunshine @ Carries, Spruce, and The handburger!

Burger Shack by Island Creamery
559 Bukit Timah road
#01-01 King’s Arcade
Tel: 6466 3477
(formerly Melvados cafe)

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