Our next review was at Burger Breakout, which was (updated Feb 2013) based at The Old Crown pub. It had only been open one day by the time we got there, but needless to say we were bloody excited. If you check the menu you would be too!
I think we had chosen what we were having about two months ago when the menu was flying around! Burgers, wings, shakes… worldy. The fact that we are a power duo also means we can get a couple of the burgers on the menu and share.
We went for the Venison burger (The Bambi Bought It) and the Cheeseburger (O.C Burger)…
I don’t know what to say….apart from that it was a cracker. I’ve got to say that I never thought that beef could be overshadowed by another meat in a burger, but the Venison just did it for me. Sourced from Dorset and using the Haunch cut, this was juicy, meaty and cooked to absolute perfection. Dave (the chef) is very generous with the patty size which is brilliant.
Many say the perfect beef patty should have between a 15-20% fat content, but the beef in the OC (Devon Long Horn) has just 5% fat making it incredibly lean but have no fear, the cheese fills the gap which I’ll come on to.. Again, you know how much I bang on about seasoning. The beef was packed full of it!
Both were beautiful, the patty on the OC was delicate, tasty and juicy really packing the sort of punch you get from our “champions league” placed teams. The Venison patty was fantastic! Melt in your mouth, with a great gamey flavour. The toppings, which I will come on to really brought out these flavours too. THIS WAS JUST A TOTALLY DIFFERENT CLASS!
VA VA VENISON Score: 9
At first look the bun looked quite strange. It looked like one of the rustique ones you can buy at supermarkets, but little did I know this sour flour delight complimented the Venison so well. It did not overpower the ‘engine room’ which is key. Just right. Of course you know it smashed the Rip Test®.
When the bun came up I was a bit dubious. It wasn’t one of your standard brioche/ sourdough buns. It was a kind of floury bun (see pics), but it really worked perfectly with the almost rusticy feel to the burger. I like that they haven’t just followed what everyone else is doing, but finding what works from every angle. I don’t think that sweet bun would have worked with the Venison burger due to the sweet nature of the toppings.
Sewperb Score: 9
Mental. Absolutely mental. The Venison burger sat on a bed of beetroot pickle (which gave it a fantastic texture) and on top of the Venison came the Pièce de résistance… The chocolate and quince sauce and the mellow but nutty Tunworth cheese. It seemed to be in melted mini blobs and helped the Venison come alive as the cheese is rich in fat. Again, it doesn’t overpower the Venison (It tastes like a milder version of Camembert) which is crucial. But for me the chocolate and quince sauce stole the show. It immediately hits you at the beginning of each bite, before calming down and letting the venison and Tunworth breathe in your mouth. Absolutely superb. The end.
Wow. I never thought I would get to eat a burger with beetroot pickle, chocolate and quince with Tunworth cheese! But that what accompanied the Bambi, and it all just worked so so well. Nothing overpowered anything else. Divine. The O.C was fantastic too, three cheese sauce (emmental, Monterey Jack, lyburn gold) instead of a slice and again you can really taste the care and thought that has gone into combining so many different types of cheese, with a lovely smoked onion jam. Brilliant. It didn’t need loads of ingredients piled up, it just worked.
Oooh Tunworth we love your way Score:8.5
The bun is very hearty but not quite stable enough to handle the huge patty. We cut the two burgers in half in order to try both and they did still hold together reasonably well.
I know recently we have moaned about not enough food… this was a feast! We were stuffed, how it should be. We could cut into the burgers and it all held together fine. The little of the juices that were left on the plate were mopped up with the final mouthful.
So big Score: 7
UPDATE 16/02/2013: Burger Breakout no longer resides at The Old Crown Pub so we have removed it from our league table.
UPDATE 06/01/13: We have since been back a few times and have been disappointed with the lack of consistency of the burgers. It’s therefore taken a bit of a hit on our league table and we have changed the individual scores. The venison is not quite the same, and we were not fans of the Whiskey Beast, where the mustard was just far too overpowering. We will be back though.
It’s clear that Dave not only takes extra special care in the way he makes his burgers, but also he goes ‘above and beyond.’ He even bought in a cheese expert to help him match the cheese to each burger (first the flavour, then texture, then how it would be melted)
At £14 for the Venison and £12 for the OC (including chips) you may feel these are on the expensive side. They aren’t. They are huge and you will be stuffed afterwards. Our only tiny tiny criticism would be that we could not taste even a subtle hint of horseradish in the ‘smoked horseradish chips,’ but they were still class.
We keep thinking about it again and again and will be back soon. PLEASE GO AND ENJOY IT.
View more photos in our gallery
Burger Breakout Menu: gourmetguy.wordpress.com
Old Crown Pub: www.old-crown.co.uk