Honest Burgers, one of London’s most popular burger restaurants, has inaugurated a third site in Camden.
The venue is in a small unit in Camden Lock, just off Camden Lock Place. Seating an intimate 30, restaurant is rather reminiscent of the original Honest Burgers in Brixton,
Co-founder Tom Barton said: “Camden market has a similar feel to Brixton; it’s just as small and shares a few of the same quirks.”
The food menu in Camden will be the same as the Soho and Brixton branches, with regular specials such as the recent ‘Honest American Cheeseburger’ served across all restaurants.
The team is also developing an extended menu of sides to accompany their trademark rosemary fries. On the drinks side, expect a similar short selection of beers and wines – Tom also hinted at possibly doing milkshakes.
Diners will be seated inside the restaurant on small tables as well as at the bar which is lined around the open kitchen.
As with the other Honest branches, all the furniture is being made in-house (by Tom’s dad). Once the restaurant fills up, diners will be able to take advantage of a communal area seating area 30, however due to licensing restrictions alcoholic drinks will only be served to those seated inside.
The restaurant chain is also working on a new live queue app which will be rolled out across all branches by the end of the year.
The Camden venue is set to be open seven days a week for both lunch and dinner. Tom added: “The market is currently heavily focused on takeaway food, therefore we want to offer people a quick dining experience where they can sit down and enjoy a meal in 20-30 minutes, of course takeaway will also be a big part of this.”
With Shake Shack and Five Guys both set to open restaurants in Central London next month, the capital’s fascination with burgers has shown no signs of slowing down. American chains Fatburger and Smashburger have also announced plans to open London branches by the end of the year.
“The arrival of the American’s means that we need to be as good as we possibly can be. We’re excited”, says Tom.
Honest have a busy year ahead with an upcoming collaboration with a well-known Soho restaurant, more TV-Burger collaborations and a fourth site currently being planned near Kings Cross.
For more information visit www.honestburgers.co.uk
Special Relationship: the burger and Britain
Meeting the demands of our taste buds for juicy burgers, hot dogs and sprinkled doughnuts is the scores of American style eateries that are popping up across the UK. But where has this desire for US cuisine come from?
In a recent piece for the Guardian, food writer Katy Slater explored this very issue, she said:
“American food has a fun, colourful allure that British food doesn’t – in it we see the neon of New York, the glamour of 50s Americana, and the glitter of Hollywood. Bite into a cheeseburger or stick a straw into a root beer float and for a brief second you could be at a Californian drive-in rather than drizzly suburban Britain.”
Paul Buckley, marketing and consumer psychologist at Cardiff Metropolitan University, gave his thoughts:
“American foods have been easily assimilated into our culture because they’re fairly bland and typically full of fat and sugar which makes them taste good.”
Aside from tasting good, another reason for the increase in American style restaurants in our cities can be attributed to the economy, as TV chef Jeremy Lee explains:
“Burger restaurants are a savvy way for young restaurateurs to cut their teeth. You can use good ingredients very cheaply. Opening a restaurant is a frightening prospect, more so now than ever – to get something past the bank manager you need a sure-fire hit.”
Premier Hospitality has featured several burger bars since its first issue and Will Beckett, owner of the up-market Hawksmoor featured in last issue, recently said: “Restaurants with mass appeal are probably safer in a bad economy – and everyone enjoys hot dogs, burgers and sundaes, right?”
While the reasons are not completely clear, whether recession, an allure to 1950’s design or simply a meaty infatuation, one thing remains sure – Brits love a good burger.