Review: Five Guys

If you’ve been following me on social media you’ll know I have been eagerly awaiting the opening of Glasgow’s first Five Guys restaurant. My love affair with Five Guys started in 2010 when I was living in New York whilst working & it was hands down the best burger I’ve ever eaten in my life at that time. When they moved across the pond to London last year, it was only natural that we popped in when briefly visiting after our mini-moon.

Five Guys

Fast forward to December 2014 & I was eager to visit Five Guys despite the over-saturation of burger outlets in Glasgow. I mean 4 within a block of each other, is there really much need? Because of the time of year, we didn’t get a chance to pop in until the Christmas holidays. The first thing I did notice was the lack of queue, which was surprising given both times I’d been to the London branch, I’d had to queue before being served. I guess it’s more than likely in part to so many burger choices nearby.

Kitchen

If you haven’t been to Five Guys, the best way I can describe it is the best fast food burger you’ll ever have. They offer burgers & hot dogs (I’ve never tried the latter) & their selling point is that toppings are free. Yes, you heard right, FREE! This includes an array of sauces, onions (two ways), chillies & a few other salad choices. If you’re stuck for choice, you can opt for “All The Way” where you get all toppings in black on your burger.

Toppings

The restaurant itself is a typical fast food joint – tables dotted around, food served on a tray & clear your own table type affair. For soft drinks, Five Guys provide self-service Coca Cola company machines that provide 100s of different options for soft drinks such as coke, fanta & sprite in various flavours. Thanks to the array of choice, I had to queue for a soft drink for 10 minutes which I’d never done in any other branch.
When you order, you’re given a ticket & once your order is ready, you collect once your ticket is shouted.

Soft Drinks

I opted for a cheeseburger with hot sauce, mayo, mustard, jalapenos & grilled onions. Each burger comes wrapped in foil & has 2 patties as default. As soon as I sank my teeth into it, I was transported back to that first burger I’d had by Five Guys. It was as juicy & full of flavour as I had remembered, with more kudos that the jalapenos were fresh which gave it an added bite. I will admit, however, that it did taste very similar to the Cali Burger I’d had from Bread Meats Bread earlier in the year.

Burger

Fries

Another cherished memory I’d had of Five Guys was their cajun fries, which are fried in low fat peanut oil to give them a distinct flavour. Previously, the fries I’d had were served in a brown paper bag & had soaked through the bag, making them more tempting. On this occasion, I wasn’t overly impressed as the fries were a bit soggy & not as moreish as I’d had in previous branches (apologies for the rubbish pic above).

Burger

A final point to make about our experience was that, for 2 cheeseburgers, a regular fries (they come in 2 sizes – small, regular & large), a soft drink & a corona, it came to over £26. Some people have commented that you are paying restaurant prices for a fast food joint. I agree with this to some extent in that it does seems a bit more compared to other burger joints nearby but for me, the taste & quality of the burger reminds me why I’m happy to pay that bit more.

Sign

Plus Points – Tasty burger, no queue to get served, novelty soft drinks dispenser
Not so Plus Points – a tad expensive for fast food, queueing for soft drinks

Bread Meats Bread – Revisit

In autumn last year, we visited Bread Meats Bread at one of their pre-launch evenings & came away with a so-so view. Since then, I’d heard good reviews from friends and more recently, my sister who visited recently for dinner.

From their Facebook posts, I’d seen a mention of their new specials, American style burgers celebrating burgers in 3 American regions for the next 3 weeks. This week is California & they are offering an In n Out burger style effort (somewhere I am dying to go) & it sounded pretty good. Last night, James vs Burger put up a post declaring it as the best burger he’s ever eaten in Glasgow so I knew it was worth checking out.

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We popped along this afternoon (literally left there 20 mins ago) & decided to try the burger. It’s a 3oz patty with cheese, salad & burger sauce & you can get it either regular or mustard fried. It comes in 3 sizes, 2×2, 3×3 & 4×4. I know the description doesn’t sound like anything special but believe me it is! We went for the 3×3 mustard fried & split it between us.

I have to say the burger was fantastic! The meat was juicy, burger sauce was moreish & bun was just right, not too bready (nothing worse than a burger where you get more bread than meat). We honestly sat in silence devouring our burger, neither putting it down once. That’s a first for us!! The Cali burgers is only available until tomorrow so you have to be quick!

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We also opted for the pepperoni burger which can be best described as a burger pizza. What more could you possibly want? It is bread meats bread red label burger made with spicy n’duja sausages accompanied with spicy sausage, pepperoni sauce & mozzarella on a garlice brioche. The burger was spicy but not overly that the flavours from the toppings was lost. The garlic brioche was a disappointment as you could barely taste the garlic. A bit more sauce wouldn’t have gone a miss but overall, another tasty burger.

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For sides we had sweet potato fries & onion rings with a dip of scotchbonnaise. I love sweet potatoes anyways but the fries were so moreish. I could’ve eaten a full bowl! The onion rings tasted a bit like a fusion of batter & breadcrumbs, which worked well. Unfortunately, the scotchbonnaise was lacking in any real heat & was more like a slightly Cajun mayo.

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Next week is a homage to the New Jersey slider & the following week is New York’s black label burger (Nigella Lawson’s favourite). The guys at bread meats bread have really upped their game since opening & it’s much improved since we last visited. Be prepared to wait though. We waited 15 mins but it was worth it!!

Bread Meats Bread

Last week we were invited along to the pre-launch of a new restaurant, Bread Meats Bread. Before I go any further, although the name is similar, this place is not affiliated with Burger Meats Bun at all (a bit of a sore point).

The restaurant is located on the corner of St Vincent St & Renfield St, occupying the former large Pret a Manger store. However, there are no signs for this place to jump out. You have to get up close to see the Bread Meats Bread signs dotted along the window.

Inside, it’s pretty laid back, with booths making up most of the seats, with a long table in the middle. The first thing you notice when you enter is a HUGE black cow on the main wall. The rest of the decor is pretty simple, with some unique touches such as the farmyard animals hidden in the bottom of the booth seats. After taking our seats, we were offered some drinks which came in the coolest glasses. Bread Meats Bread have customised plastic glasses with little thumb inserts for all drinks – pints included!

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Bread Meats Bread

Bread Meats Bread is another restaurant in Glasgow focussing on the gold old American burger. They do have their own unique spin on it, offering 3 types of burger patty:

– House Blend – 3 types of good quality Scotch Beef

– Red Label – Scotch Beef mixed with spicy N’gduja pork sausage

– Black Label – Prime Aged Scotch Beef

There are some sandwiches on offer including Pastrami, Brisket & Chicken Sandwiches. They also offer a range of poutine – chips smothered in gravy & topped with cheese curds. Something I want to try as I’m unsure if I would like it but unfortunately we didn’t get the chance to try it at the pre-launch.

We were first provided with 2 sliders, 1 of the black label Black & Blue burger & the other of the House blend cheese burger. Even with one bite of each burger, you can tell the difference in the quality of the meat. The Black Label has a much more meatier taste to it, whilst the House blend taste like a good quality burger van burger (not that it is a bad that thing!). There was only a small bit of blue cheese on the Black Label which wasn’t enough for my liking. The House Blend was pretty tasty, complimented by a pretzel bun. This was something I hadn’t tried before & it had a nice doughy texture to it.

Black & Blue & CheeseburgersHouse & Black Label Burgers

The other items we tried during the launch were the potato chips, pastrami sandwich & new york hotdog. I especially enjoyed the chips, not only because they were chunky but also thanks to the side of sriracha mayo that comes with it. It was not too spicy but had a good kick to it. They also offer ghost chilli mayo but didn’t provide it on the night as they were working on toning down the taste. The pastrami sandwich was also quite tasty, accompanied by a rye bun with some grain mustard. It was full of meat & not overpowered by the mustard.

ChipsPastrami SandwichTub of Gherkins

I have to admit, I did not like the hotdog at all. It came to us in a pretel bun, with american mustard over it. The sausage itself had a very strange taste to it which did indicate it was probably homemade but not to my liking at all. It’s really hard to put my finger on the exact taste, like mushed up sausages & a bit of spice. It also was not appealing to the eye as it was very grey & looked as though it had been boiled.

Hotdog

Since opening last week, Bread Meats Bread seems to have become firmly established on the Glasgow burger scene. With the small number of tables, I would advise going along early, especially on weekends or lunchtimes. They have also started doing takeaway this week which will go down well with the Glasgow office crowd.

I have to admit I’m sitting on the fence with Bread Meats Bread. Some of the items we tasted were pretty good but others were ok. I would’ve liked to have sampled the Red Label burgers so that we had all 3 to compare against. I would say it’s definitely worth a visit to sample the newest kid on the block but I’ll have to make another visit before I can say for certain if it’s going to be a Get Stuffed favourite.