The Great Burger Experiment
By Joris van Doorn and Harold Pijpelink
DISCLAIMER: No burgers were harmed during the making of this article!
The boys are back with a follow-up to the great pizza experiment of last semester. Once again, we have sacrificed our precious student loans and taste buds for the greater good, to find out what students should be putting their teeth into (other than teasingly in unspecified body parts, you). With a heavy heart did Joris set aside his oh-so-strict vegetarian diet. Five burger restaurants were reviewed based on the quality of the burger, the price, and service. Here is an overview:
- Burger Bistro 4/5
This is a place you might not have heard of. Burger Bistro opened about half a year ago and is located on Damplein, next to La Piccola Italia. The kitchen is the first thing you see as you walk in: you can sit at the counter and watch the chef (former B’tje Anders dude) prepare your burger before your very eyes, and a former waitress of your favorite bar, Sev, is there to serve you. The Mexican burger, with guacamole and tortilla chips, had a welcoming and refreshing spicy taste in comparison to other classic burgers. But it was the pulled pork burger stole the show, with a very rich, yet subtle, flavour.
The Pulled Pork Burger. 11.50; Fries, Brioche bun, 180 gram pulled pork, lettuce mix, grilled courgette, and caramelised onion.
The Mexican Burger. 11.50; Tortilla chips, Brioche bun, 180 gram beef burger, sweet corn, lettuce mix, grilled pepper, caramelized onion, and jalapeno, guacamole.
- Sparerib Express 3.5/5
This place may not be the first that comes to mind when you think about burgers, but they do quite a good job. The order took approximately an hour to arrive, but fortunately the meal was still hot. The sour bread is a nice change from the usual burger buns, and the patty itself is top notch. The Cheeseburger tastes very full because of the addition of veggies. As for the Wagyu burger, the beef tastes amazing, but the rest of the burger was not as great, and a bit bland overall.
Wagyu Beef Burger. 10.95; 160 gram Wagyu burger, sour bread bun, lettuce, pickles, tomato, red onion, and truffle mayonnaise.
Cheeseburger. 9.70; 200 gram beef burger, sour bread bun, lettuce, red onion, and American sauce (whatever that may be).
- B’tje Anders 3/5
Although B’tje Anders is mostly known for their French fries, it turns out they know how to make a burger. We ordered two Allesburgers (“everything burgers”). Compared to the other establishments we visited, the Allesburger was small, but yet again, B’tje Anders is known for their fries, not as experts in constructing large meat structures (not a reference to Harold’s genitals). The burger was good, you could taste all ingredients, but it’s also nice and balanced. The main downside of this burger is the egg – as soon as you bite into the yolk, the rest of the burger turns into a wet mess, and the balance is gone.
Allesburger. 4.95; Soft bun, hamburger, gouda cheese, ketchup, caramelized onions, bacon, and egg.
- McDonald’s 2/5
We knew what we were in for when we walked into McDonald’s, and left knowing that it will be the exact same next time. The burgers aren’t too bad, but you can definitely tell that they were still frozen about 10 minutes ago. The whole thing just doesn’t feel fresh. Despite this, the low price and fast service make McDonald’s a good place to go if you need a quick burger, you live in Koestraat, and you don’t feel like cooking.
Big Mac. 3,75; Chili Chicken. 1,25; Maestro Burger. 5,25; Ingredients: ??? (Do we really want to know)?
- De Middelburger 1.5/5
Let’s not kid ourselves here: De Middelburger makes very tasty burgers that definitely would have been contestants for the top spot on our list, had it not been for several surprises when it came to service. After ordering, your brave reporters spent over an hour patiently waiting for their Stoofvleesburger and Middel-burger. The Middel-Burger turned out to be a burgerized version of the kapsalon. The stewed meat on the Stoofvleesburger was actually good, and not a gimmick. The taste and presentation of the burgers had almost made up for the long wait, and we were about to leave with a smile on our faces – until we saw the bill. Let’s just say that with the amount we spent there you could have flown to London, adopted a seal, or bought yourself food for another two weeks.
Stoofvleesburger. 13,75; A 100% Beef Burger (175gr), Homemade stewed meat, Rucola, Carmelised red onion rings, Belgian Mayonnaise.
Middel-burger. 13,75; A 100% Beef burger (175gr), Chicken Shawarma, Fries, Cheddar, Iceberg Lettuce, Red Onion Rings, and Garlic Sauce.
Regardless of how nice it is to go out for food, burgers don’t necessarily make the best student food. They are relatively pricy for a product that can easily be replicated at home. However, if you feel like trying something new, Burger Bistro is the place to go.
Joris van Doorn, Class of 2018, is a Social Science, Economics, Psychology, and Statistics major from Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
Harold Pijpelink, Class of 2018, is an Economics, Environmental Science, and Human Geography major from Axel, the Netherlands.