The Beer and Burger Lounge
Beer. Burgers. In Richmond. Of course it wasn’t long before I checked it out…
I’m not sure that it was much of a ‘lounge’ – perhaps ‘beer and burger bar’ would have been more apt. There were a couple of larger communal tables, elevated tables with stools and a number of seats along the main bar.
The menu is short and simple, although there is a little more variety than, say, Huxtaburger. There is a burger for each meat type (chicken, pork, lamb, fish, veg and a special game burger), as well as a handful of non-burger options and desserts.
I was tempted by a side of onion rings but eventually gave in to some crumbed jalapenos ($6.50 for around 6 pieces). They were every bit as crunchy, spicy and awesome as I expected them to be. The accompanying handful of chips, heavy with chicken salt, were also quite welcome as I’m the kind of person who likes a chip or two but struggles to finish a whole serving. The side of sour cream helped soothe the jalapeno after-burn but I would have much preferred some sort of chipotle-infused mayo, in true Tex-Mex style.
I opted for a classic cheeseburger ($10) which came with a bonus onion ring. The batter was nice and light, with a generous ring of soft onion within. Next time I’ll be sure to get a whole serve of these.
Generally when eating burgers the bottom half seems to disappear, so I have to do this awkward thing where I eat it upside down and get sauce all over myself. Here I was glad to see that the bottom half of the bun was a lot larger than the top half, overcoming this problem. Engineering at work!
The brioche bun was buttery-sweet, not unlike a Huxtaburger. The cheese was perfectly melted all over the patty: this was definitely a true cheeseburger, not just a burger with cheese slapped on it as an afterthought. The patty had a nice char-grilled crusty exterior which gave way to tender, pink meat. Which, by the way, is how any good quality house-minced patty should be cooked (pre-purchased mince, on the other hand, should be cooked all the way through because of food safety concerns). I saw a number of the reviews on the Beer and Burger Lounge’s urbanspoon page erroneously reported the patty as being ‘raw’, and gave them a negative vote. Now that I think about it, most of them are probably fake/paid reviewers as they’d only posted once or twice. Not like me, I’m real! But anyway, back to the burger…
Overall the patty felt a little lean. It was hardly dry but could have benefited from a little more fat to add flavour and juiciness. The burger was completed by pickles, tomato jam and mustard. I felt like the ratio of these were a bit off; there was quite a lot of mustard (which had been spread on the larger bottom bun) and hardly any tomato jam (on the top bun). A shame really, as I’d heard a lot of good things about their tomato jam.
It may not have been the best burger I’ve had in Melbourne, but it definitely rates. All the burgers are priced between $10-$13, larger and more filling than Huxtaburger and worlds above similarly-priced burger chain Grill’d. What’s more, it’s yet to have reached super-hyped status so you won’t need to wait for hours to get in. $5.50 for a pot of Gypsy and I’m set! The only real downside to the place is that it’s freeeeezing. Bring a jacket, your friends and your appetite.The Beer and Burger Lounge 112 Swan Street Richmond