Pan Pacific, Orchard Road, Singapore

Burger guide Pan Pacific Singapore
Say "hotel chain" to a burger-lover, and you'll get a raised eyebrow at least. The world over, the hotel industry is a consistent under-performer if you're on the quest for a satisfying burger. So that's why the Pan Pacific in Orchard Road stood out - and it passed the test with flying colours and a side order of mayo. Here's why... Juicy burgers, Wagu beef, cooked any way you like - and being that Singapore is one of the foodie hubs of the world, chefs here are in fierce battle. Add to that a mix and match option of toppings (4 included in the price, yes, 4!), and you'll get a sense that this is no microwave-from-the-fridge endeavour. Quality bacon, good avocados, properly prepared eggs, and a crunchy chips that had been healthily dried. The Pan Pacific's kitchen boast a stack of local food competition awards, in case you're unlucky enough to have mates who don't share your burger obsession, then the buffets are worth a special visit. We saw lots of folks enjoying themselves, and they're great value for sure - but when it comes to burger-worship, how could you even think of a buffet.

  • Burgers: 7.5/10
  • Chips & Dips: 8/10 and good quality mayo    
  • Ambience: 6/10 - this is the only let down as it's still a hotel restaurant 
  • Value: 7/10 (Singapore isn't on the backpacker trail so nothing outside Chinatown will come in at 9+) 

The Wolf Pack, Johannesburg

Lively, fun crowd at this cool Johannesburg burger joint.  If you are after sophistication this is not for you but if you are craving craft beer with a gourmet burger and a great vibe then The Wolf Pack is just the ticket. Tasty choice of unusual burgers from the extreme signature dish “Big Bad Wolf” (wasabi, pineapple and pancetta topped beef patty) to the eclectic “Chicken and brie” (cheese, pancetta, strawberry and ginger jam topped herbed chicken fillet).  There’s a good selection of veggie options, a choice of fresh or fried side with every dish and a small but excellent variety of starters and nibbles. An ice cold, locally brewed craft beer washes it all down nicely – just don’t sit under the speakers if you want to hear what your companions are saying!
Burgers: 8.5/10
Chips & Dips: 8/10
Ambience: 7.5/10
Value: 8/10

The Hoxton

Located on the edge of London’s Covent Garden district, this offshoot of the Soho House club has open kitchens and flaming charcoal grills. Eat at the bar and watch the chefs in action – and try to not order yourself a portion of truffle fries tossed with parmesan. This is fresh food at its best, and with top quality steak meat, you get to order your burger any way you like - from a blue to well done. It will come with that sensational crispiness edge to the beef, and one is easily enough to fill you up (no “double-up” options on the menu at time of writing). For those branching out, lamb, chicken and mushroom burgers all make guest appearances, and being Soho House, there’s no shortage of cocktails and condiments to choose from, or charismatic staff to chat to. Like burgers? In London? It’s a must.   
Burgers: 9.5/10 (Beware - this may be the ultimate burger this year)
Chips & Dips: 8/10
Ambience: 9/10
Value: 8/10 (Not for a tight budget, but perfect for the sophisticated burger connoisseur)

Byron - the rising star of burger restaurants

Discovered it totally by accident when passing by their Gloucester Road branch (almost opposite the tube entrance) and it made my day! Nice clean décor, simple menu with everything you need from a hamburger restaurant. Seriously good burgers served rare (if you like it this way) supposingly made daily from matured beef. Oreo cookies milkshake is must though you can shat one with a couple of friends if you count calories :-)

However not sure if showing pictures of cows you are just eating is a good idea...

They have a few more branches: High St Kensington and Westfield shopping mall.

Fine Burger Company

Fulham Broadway, London

With the promise of a much greater choice then your average burger bar, and a good flame grill sizzling in sight, it’s easy to hope for too much here. FBC is another me-too following in the footsteps of GBK, but manages to fall short. The ingredients are there, but just not with the attention to detail to pull it off: great flame grill – but the rare burgers came in ‘blue’, lazily turned, barely singed on one side (and the meat not good enough for a steak tartar by a long way); good baps with generous doses of grain showed the buyers were trying hard – but served very cold on the underside and no attempt to properly toast them (classic for mass production straight-from-the-fridge set ups); tomato relish so mass produced and cheap it’s really worth skipping. That said, the kids’ mini burger selections looked fun and a cool way to make an adventure out of a burger, the wine selection was surprising, and the range of lamb and chicken burgers is refreshing. The ‘breadless burger’ came up trumps with a good salad and oil if you asked. Overall? Many of the right ingredients, but sloppily executed leaving us sure to head over the way to Nando’s the next time we needed a protein fix before the movies. Like a bright kid at school who can’t be bothered to get off the couch: ‘C- …underperforming, wasting, could try harder.‘

Burgers: 3.5/10
Chips & Dips: 5/10
Ambience: 4/10
Value: 3.5/10