Most stories of people’s favourite burgers are probably quite unlikely to feature Brighton. More likely are tales of that legendary burger devoured and forever imprinted in memory from various states in America. I, too, had it not been for a visit to Burger Brothers, would be in this category.
I have many a fond memory of delicious burgers in the USA. My recent trip to San Francisco got off to a typical yet expected poor start; jet-lagged, frustration with the OTT immigration process, and to rub salt in the wounds, let down once again by America’s derelict transport networks. It took just the three hours from airport to hotel. But things got markedly better from thereon. 11pm and just about time for breakfast, my body started to make its usual demands. I see a big, orange sign reading ‘Super Duper Burgers, and with zero will power to do any research, deliriously wander in. The burgers certainly were super duper, and my body, in equal measures, was both simultaneously grateful and ungrateful at my decision to eat this mere moments before calling it a night.
America is a country both celebrated and criticised for being excessive, and food is perhaps an area where this is most notable. It is not uncommon for menus to be so large that closing time comes quicker than it is possible to study the overwhelming selection. And when you have made that oh-so-difficult choice, then comes the infinitely more onerous task of eating the mountains of food. Whilst perhaps a lazy generalisation, fair or not, American food is often characterised as prioritising quantity over quality. But America is not alone here; restaurants all over the world are guilty of this. This is not, however, an accusation that Burger Brothers in Brighton could possibly be charged with.
Those that regularly frequent burger joints will seldom recall a time where an accompaniment of chips/fries were not a given. But not a single potato walks through the door of Burger Brothers. Burger Brothers is not preoccupied with offering distracting side dishes, and instead has an intimate one-page menu of around seven burgers that showcase the finest quality ingredients. Considering the unquestionable quality of these burgers, it is fair to say that their pricing of between £6-8 is modest, all things considered. In keeping with the Brighton crowd, the menu caters for the vegetarian/vegan audience; from vegan patties paired with caramelised onions and roasted peppers, to halloumi with portabello mushrooms and Cajun sauce – everyone leaves this place with a smile on their face. Meatier options include their award- winning Stilton burger that is served with chorizo and wasabi mayo. This really, really packs a punch. Alternatively, their crispy chicken, crunchy beetroot, and guacamole burger is a fantastic choice for showing off different textures. I personally struggle with goat’s cheese, but the many that do adore it will no doubt be drawn to the restaurant’s favourite burger – creamy goat’s cheese, roasted peppers, honey mustard and their mysterious secret sauce.
But Burger Brother’s secret sauce is not the only secret thing about Burger Brothers. Burger Brothers itself, let’s say, is rather unassertive in its presence. Thankfully, burger aficiandos queue in vast numbers outside this tiny eatery in Britain’s sea-side town, and just this once, queues are a much-appreciated blessing. This inconspicuous and utterly unassuming hole in the wall could quite easily be missed if it were not for its sheer popularity. There is nothing elaborate or flashy about its interior either, nor is there any need to impress by these means, as the burgers do the ta
lking. Upon entering through the dingy looking door, surroundings are rather bare to say the least; offering customers nothing but a few stalls. This is no issue, as relatively speaking, this is fast food; customers are not encouraged to make themselves too at home, and this is fortunate given the numbers that flood in. Frankly, it could easily be mistaken for a takeaway joint. This is an uncharitable yet not totally unreasonable conclusion to draw. This is not to say that it would not be immensely satisfying to sink your teeth into one of these burgers after a night out partying. But a burger at Burger Brothers is not an experience deserving of being lost in the memories of a drunken night out.
Many restaurants, sometimes with a sense of insecurity, and more often than not, somewhat unjustifiably, claim to be the best at something. Burger Brothers in Brighton, however, might just have something in their claim to making the best burgers.
For more of Jake’s work, please see www.dinersdigest.co.uk