Okay, I know I’ve been on record moaning about how difficult it is to get a good burger in Australia (particularly Perth). Of course I know that quality options are available – I have been to Jus Burger – but every time I go past there it’s packed to the rafters and so quality tends to become inaccessible on a casual basis.
I recently picked up The West Australian’s “Good Food Guide 2011″ ($19.95 from newsagents) and was pleasantly surprised to see a “best burgers” category. I wasn’t surprised to see Alfred’s Kitchen in Guildford (an essential stop on the way home from visiting friends in that area who liked to dine on the cheap and had small appetites) and The Burger Bistro in Shafto Lane, which I’ve walked past on several occasions but have never tried because it’s always full, like Jus Burgers.
V Burger Bar faces onto Albany Highway and is part of a small complex that includes Charcoal House Cafe and Chock Dii Thai. It’s a small restaurant but thankfully it has quite a few tables outside. I arrived just before noon and there was a steady stream of people getting takeaway orders as well as diners at every table inside the restaurant.
One thing that always delights me on a menu – onion rings. I’ve never been a great fan of chips, and my two favourite sides are onion rings and coleslaw. Obviously I was born in the wrong country because they’re so uncommon here. And no, Hungry Jacks (Burger King) fans, their onion rings don’t cut it although I am yet to try their new side serve of Angry Onions.
I ordered the Crispy Crisp burger (prime beef, gourmet lettuce, tomato, crispy battered onion, V relish and aioli) for $10.80 with cheese added for an extra $1.50. I don’t do raw tomato on burgers or sandwiches so I ordered it without, and I couldn’t resist a side order of onion rings $4. The selection of drinks was limited (I was really hoping for a milkshake) and I settled for a can of Coke Zero.
After a wait of a little under ten minutes my onion rings arrived. They were crisp but not too hot, although I’m not sure if this was intentional or whether they’d been sat around for a while. The serving size was ample, and the aioli nice and peppery without being over the top. My burger took about the same time again to come out, which given the time of day wasn’t anything to complain about. If I hadn’t had the onion rings to keep me going the wait might have been a bit too long.
Whoa mama! I wasn’t expecting a whole extra serve of onion rings in the burger. Being careful not to impale myself on the massive stick holding it together, I removed all but one onion ring to give myself some chance of getting the burger in in my mouth.
What can I say, but it was absolutely delicious. The burger patty was without a doubt the most moist and tasty that I have eaten. The focaccia-style bun was light and crispy, and held everything together without getting too soggy. The relish was chunky without tasting of raw tomato.
I will definitely return to V Burger Bar to sample some of the other menu items including the side of crispy salt & pepper calamari. The pricing is just right and the menu includes a good variety of burgers including vegetarian, chicken, seafood and a gluten-free bun option.
V Burger Bar
12/910 Albany Highway
Victoria Park WA
Phone: (08) 9355 3702
Monday – 5:00pm to 9:30pm
Tuesday to Thursday – 11:30am to 9:30pm
Friday to Saturday – 11:30am to late
Sunday – 11:30am to 9:30pm