What’s not to love about a burger? A big slab of juicy meat, dripping sauce, tangy relish and crispy bacon, finished off with a wedge of lettuce for a quick health kick are my combination of pure perfection when it comes to finger food. Okay, so it’s not exactly sophisticated finger food, but it sure brings satisfaction when you’re on the lookout for messy carbs.
My mom has always rated Gourmet Burger Kitchen (GBK) as her favourite place to get a burger. I’ve never really favoured chain restaurants over independent ones, but with GBK I can see where she’s coming from.
The 90+ restaurants, which are situated across the UK, offer a gluten free menu that provides an ample selection of allergen free meals, whether you’re looking for chicken, beef or veggie options. I admit to being a little boring when I eat at GBK, as I usually opt for the Classic Beef Burger with house mayo, relish and salad, with either bacon or avocado as an added extra, all of which are milk free too.
What do I love about GBK? Well firstly, you’re given an option over how your burger is cooked – a question that is not often asked in other establishments. I often find burgers in pubs to be overcooked, dry and on the odd occasion, burnt to a crisp. Not everyone realises that burger meat is just like steak in that you cook it to your own liking, whether well done, medium or on the rare side. I asked for my burger at GBK to be cooked medium rare, which meant that it was juicy and flavoursome.
Secondly, the burgers taste fresh. I don’t get the impression that the meat has been cooked in bulk and sat out on a counter for a couple of hours. Thirdly, the house sauces, which are apparently cooked fresh each day, taste amazing and I’m always chuffed when I re-visit the allergen menu and discover that they haven’t snuck milk into most of them. Fourth and final reason, the atmosphere is chilled, you don’t feel rushed and it’s a great place to catch up with friends or have a quick lunch during shopping. I even have the choice of ordering a dairy free milkshake if I want – an option that isn’t offered at many other restaurants.
I actually did a review on GBK back in 2014 when I was first introduced to the restaurant. I called it the burger equivalent of Nando’s in which you’d either love it or hate it. I can safely say that since then, my mind has been changed, which I think is due in large part to them changing the supplier of the gluten free buns, not overcharging for condiments and making the ordering of gluten free food as simple and enjoyable an experience as possible.
Overall, GBK is my favourite chain burger place to eat at. I’ve eaten at quite a few of the branches across the country and I’ve never had any complaints – quite an accomplishment since I’m not always a big advocate of chains. My only suggestion would be to introduce separate fryers for chips, as currently they are not listed on gluten free menus due to cross contamination. On the other hand, I still love the place and am looking forward to many more burgers to come.