Sunday, September 19, 2010

Survival in three letters

"If you want a really good burger when you're living in London," my friend KB advised, "then look no further than GBK". And she pointed to the store on our right. Gourmet Burger Kitchen is known to the locals as GBK and those three simple initials are totally worth remembering.

GBK is actually a chain of stores that was started by 3 New Zealanders back in 2001 (I read this on the website). The first store that I saw that day with KB was in the Clapham High Street. Today I visited the store at Putney, tucked away down a little side street but I must have sensed it somehow. It's simple signage basically jumped out at me and I knew we had to go there. "Just to taste," as Crazy Granny would say.

Sundays at the Putney GBK is apparently Family Day. We got seated and then the useless waitresses asked us to move tables so that they could accommodate a family of mother, father and about 4,000 kids. At first I was irritated by this but then I realised they were asking us to move to the other side of the restaurant and that suited me just fine.

My burger was delicious. I ordered a Greek Mint burger, which is basically made of lamb mince with mint (duh), plus the usual salads and some chilli sauce with mild tzatziki added in. The best of the souvlaki and burger worlds, all mixed together. How could I lose?! As I stuffed in the piping hot chips I forgot about the screaming kids, even the charming child who decided to kick her mother in the shins at the cash register.

LW ordered a bacon & avocado burger (with the customary beef pattie) which she said was very tasty, though she hastened to add that in her expert opinion, Australian bacon is far superior to the British varieties. The only bacon I've ingested here has been in bacon sarnies stuffed in to fend off nasty hangovers, so admittedly I have not really savoured its flavour. Perhaps I need to work on this so that I can draw an educated conclusion of my own? Literally food for thought, no?

Anyway to walk off the burgers we wandered down the Putney High Street and it's great. It boasts loads of great boutiques, even ones you'd find on busy Oxford Street in the city - just without the ridiculous crowds. The cold air is starting to creep in to London now, so admittedly my post-lunch retail therapy focussed on warm fleeces and snuggly woollen goodies but I exercised discipline and came away empty-handed. Next time, maybe.

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