We’ve been having great weather in London recently, and I was out walking along one of my favourite parts of the city: the Angel. Whilst I go there often enough, and regularly walk past the local GBK branch, it hadn’t really piqued my interest at all in the last few years. However, after claiming to be the local burger expert here @Planandeat, I had to live up to my tag and ventured back into GBK to see what had changed.
Food - 7/10
Ambiance - 7/10
Service - 7/10
Value for Money - 7/10
GBK is by no means the best burger joint you’ll ever go to, but its always got some interesting options and flavours that are worth checking out.
Price Range: ££
Telephone: 020 7354 9134
Address: N1 Centre, 39 Parkfield St, London N1 0PS
Nearest Station: Angel
Despite their interesting and often unusual combination of flavours, GBK was never one of my staple burger joints. It is probably no surprise then to hear that I hadn’t visited any of their branches in the last 2 or 3 years, that is until a few weeks ago in a lovely summer’s day here in London. Their Angel branch is a bright and open restaurant with high ceilings and plenty of space. My visit took place on a weekday afternoon so it was relatively quiet for an Angel restaurant, but that was exactly what I was after. Regular readers will know that my last experience at Yalla Yalla was the opposite of quiet (which is not a bad thing :))!
Starters & Mains
Everything came together, which is always preferred – but they did get our order slightly wrong. We ordered the Garlic Mayo sauce, but they served us Baconnaise; that was easily resolved though and the waitress did dispatch a serving of Garlic Mayo to us in no time.
I got the Taxi Driver burger (well done), alongside a portion of onion rings and sweet potato fries. I prefer my burgers either medium well or well done, as I don’t like them bloody. I couldn’t recall how ‘medium well’ was translated over at GBK so I went for the safe option and chose well done. Though from experience I did remember not to order their skinny fries (which are too skinny, annoyingly) or their truffle cheese fries (which don’t come with enough cheese on them!). I’d always recommend you go for the sweet potato fries here (they’re really good!). The onion rings, although small in diameter, were thick and reasonably sized. Their batter didn’t hold up well though, and it was generally flaky. You receive six in a portion though so GBK are generous compared to other burger joints in this regard.
The Taxi Driver was a deviation from the norm for me. Usually I’d go straight for the simple and straightforward ‘beef + cheese’ option, and while that was on the menu, I decided to go for something different since we were at GBK. If you’re not familiar with them, GBK are known for experimenting with their flavours – which to their credit leads to some interesting and unusual burgers. Two such examples being the Avo Burger featuring an avocado, and the Kiwiburger featuring pineapples and beetroot! The Taxi Driver isn’t as quiet as unusual as other items on their menu, it simply involves a 6oz British beef patty, American cheese, Cajun relish, Chipotle mayo and an onion ring sandwiched between a sesame seeded bun with some pickles and salad.
My burger was firstly put together well: although it arrives supported with a skewer through the middle, it held up pretty well once removed as well, despite the extra padding from the onion ring. Your first contact with a burger is with the bun, so I was pleased to see that it was an egg washed sesame seeded one here (dry buns are the worst!). Then, going through each of the layers underneath with your bite: the salad, pickles, sauces, the onion ring, the cheese, and finally the burger, you do pick up nice flavours along the way which combine well. The burger itself was perfectly cooked (asking for well done is always a risky business!).
Another thing I appreciated at GBK was the number of sauces and condiments available. The usual ketchup, mayo and mustard bottles were readily available, but we also got to try GBK’s “Hot Green Sauce” and “Hot Red Sauce”, which made for interesting flavours when dipped into my burger. Condiments are often overlooked at burger joints but GBK did really well here in terms of flavour combinations, which is exactly what you’d expect from them.
Overall, I enjoyed my experience at GBK Angel. Whilst it wasn’t enough to convert it into one of my main staples, I will make a point of going there more often (certainly more than once every couple of years). If you ever do get bored of having the same burgers over and over, GBK is a good spot to mix things up a bit.