Guerrilla Burger

12 01 2013

The title of Bristol’s Best Burger is becoming increasingly hard-fought. And now, with the opening of Guerrilla Burger on Baldwin Street, there’s a new boy in town to compete with the likes of Warren’s Gourmet Burger Company in St Anne’s, The Burger Joint on Whiteladies Road and Atomic Burger on the Gloucester Road.

Whereas Warren’s offers eating challenges of burgers the size of small children, in Guerrilla Burger a small child could eat their ‘sliders’, or small burgers – no more than five centimetres across – in one mouthful.

Burgers here are offered as single, double or triple, from £3.15 for a single falafel burger to £11.50 for a triple Spanish, with chorizo, Manchego cheese and quince jelly.

The corrugated iron circling the bar (below) is reminiscent of the wooden bar at Beerd, and having a small single burger is also like having a third at the St Michael’s Hill pub, enabling you to taste more than one option without breaking the bank.

Guerrilla Burger inside

My classic royale and panko chicken on opening day yesterday were both very good, as were the starters of coconut sesame prawns (£4.95) and calamari rings (£3.75). But the chips served in a McDonald’s-style paper carton were insipid and tasteless.

What more than made up for this, however, was the frozen yoghurt and sour cherry ripple (£3.50) from Gelupo in Soho, wonderfully fruity and tangy, and several notches above the frozen yoghurt in Angel Berry, previously Bristol’s best “fro-yo”.

Guerrilla Burger is an intriguing proposition. Originally a pop-up at 40 Alfred Place in Kingsdown, its new permanent home is hipster Shoreditch transported to Bristol city centre, a perfect companion to BrewDog just down the road.

There are booths with leather seats and their own dimmer switches, and a drinks menu made up mostly of cocktails; yet food is served on paper plates and plastic trays, and on the canteen-style tables and chairs nearest the window, you pay on ordering.

I counted 10 staff yesterday, six front of house and four in the kitchen, in what is not a large space and in a location not blessed with recent success.

Mostly tattooed and wearing colourful Converse shoes, service was excellent. The bartender even rustled up a non-alcoholic mojito for my 22-month-old daughter to match her mum’s stronger version.

A slider in Bristol will still remain a slide, but at Guerrilla Burger there is a new meaning for the word. Bristol’s best burgers? The jury is still out. Bristol’s best sliders? Undoubtedly.

Guerrilla Burger

Guerrilla Burger, 48-52 Baldwin Street, Bristol, BS1 1QB. 07528 521 151.

Website: www.facebook.com/GuerrillaBurger
Twitter: @guerrillaburg


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11 responses

12 01 2013
Schneider

“But the chips served in a McDonald’s-style paper carton were insipid and tasteless.”

I must say that I concur entirely. The fries were exceptionally bland. I couldn’t work out if they were just cheap frozen fries, or cooked in cheap oil, or both. Actually made me seriously doubt the foodie credentials of GB. How could something so obvious get through the radar?

14 01 2013
jp0819

I agree, the chips were awful; served in cheap fairground cardboard and with a aftertaste of cheap oil. Have to say I wasn’t particularly taken by the sliders either- meat didn’t taste of much at all and toppings, regardless of the size, were scarce. Only upside was the service and the Gelupo ice cream but not enough to get me back there.

14 01 2013
Louise Z

I went yesterday and was really disappointed. Almost an hour to receive our sliders which were over-rated and over-priced – and this was when the restaurant had only 4 booths to serve. The chips were a joke I’m afraid, I could get better at Burger King!. And our original (albeit very pleasant) waitress left to go home mid-way through our meal without saying good bye or handing over us to someone else! Our meal was £36, we left unsatisfied and wished we’d stuck to TGI Fridays.

14 01 2013
Martin

Guerrilla Burger have responded on their Facebook page to complaints about the chips:

“We are working on a special Guerrilla Burger seasoning for our fries. There is much work going on in the GB kitchen to ensure you guys get the best Guerrilla Burger dining experience! We are passionate about the food we create. Best GB”

14 01 2013
Sarah

I ate at Guerrilla Burger on Sunday and the whole experience was very enjoyable! The food, service and unique environment made a refreshing change to other ‘chain’ restaurants! I’m liking the fact that an independent restaurant is bringing something new to Bristol as I’ve never had a slider before but will certainly be going back for more – especially washed down with a cocktail or two!

15 01 2013
Schneider

Sarah, you can get sliders at various other places in Bristol such as Start The Bus! Personally I suspect sliders are a bit of a gimmick, but a gimmick is often what you need to get noticed…

15 01 2013
Schneider

“We are working on a special Guerrilla Burger seasoning for our fries”

This is a strange response. People complained the fries (i.e. potato chips fried in oil) were bad and the response is effectively “Don’t worry we are going to add more salt!”. Last time I checked potatoes tasted pretty good on their own…source better potatoes & oil before you worry about lack of seasoning!

17 01 2013
iheartbert

Hmmm the concept is good, but they’ve missed the mark totally. The decor albeit funky, it’s a bit dated and has been done so many times before.
It’s the little things, the corrugated iron around the bar looks really good, yet they’re nailed tacky wood on top of school tables with plastic chairs and hung banners on the walls.
I understand they’ve only just opened and all, but things like “sorting a season for our chips” should have researched well in advance.
(purely putting salt and pepper on the table maybe?)
For a similar price at Lucky Chip in london, you get a much bigger and better slider.

7 02 2013
mechagodzilla

Ate there today and was possibly the worst lunch I have ever had. Massively overpriced I thought, given the low quality and size of the food. The burgers were more miniscule than we imagined, and would be gone in one unsatisfied bite. Despite this though I was so disgusted with what they served me I didn’t eat it anyway. As well as being pointlessly small, the burgers were also utterly tasteless so it was near impossible to actually be sure you had eaten anything at all. I specifically requested they leave off the mayo, but they didn’t. The chips- bizarrely- were the best thing (probably because we were so starving we were glad of anything), but they were also pretty tasteless.

The place seems to aspire to the gourmet burger segment but ultimately I felt that the food they were serving was pretty bargain basement and massively overpriced for what it was. The water they served was more bursting with flavour.

The decor reminded me of the set from any straight to video sci-fi non-classic. Totally devoid of atmosphere. The waitress tried very hard. The head waitress (owner?) didn’t respond very well to our criticisms and seemed convinced that there are hordes of people out there wanting tiny burgers. But the concept of ‘sliders’ isn’t even a good gimmick. Who wants a tiny burger? Barely a mouthful. Even my 2 year old would have gone hungry.

I don’t normally seek to comment but I was so disappointed and irritated by this place that I’m going out of my way to warn people away from it. Stick with Macdonalds or something. Even if you’re taking someone on a romantic date it would be better sharing a Big Mac under the golden arches than a tiny nothing burger in the sickly neon glow of this place. At least you get more than one bite with a Big Mac, and you’d be able to taste it too.

After we ate there, my friend and I both had to go and get another lunch before heading back to work- partly because we were still hungry, and partly to get rid of the bland non-taste of the food.

Avoid. Looking forward to seeing what new restaurant opens up there in a few month’s time.

8 02 2013
BurgerMaster

I’m mechagodzilla’s lunch mate.. This place could be so much more if the waitress was willing to LISTEN to feedback from the customers.. If there was a normal size burger option on the menu it’d be a start. To only list single burgers which are only about the quarter the size of a normal burger is a massive flaw in the existence of this “Quarter size Burger restaurant”..

TIP TO RESTAURANT : Give the option to diners to have normal size burgers.. The piddly quarter size burgers could still be available, but bought in pairs for about the same price. However, at £4.50 for something smaller than a tesco economy burger and not much bigger than a Jammie dodger, I dread to think how much a normal sized burger would cost… £12? too much in my opinion… Massively disappointed with this slider concept – dishonesty in a 6.5cm diameter bap.

28 02 2013
Wes

Must admit I was somewhat overwhelmed by guerilla burger – there was a group of 8 of us and whilst we all enjoyed the food the service was very poor and spoilt the occasion! One of our group had been the week before and had similar poor service but put this down to teething problems! Our conclusion is it is not teething problems but unfortunately their front of house team is letting down the chefs in the back who made some lovely food! We had to get menus for ourself from the bar, chase waiters for drinks and approach them to make food orders!

The food is also a little more expensive then it warrants which with good service I would not mind but given the service we received it is worth noting!

Only the second time I have failed to leave a tip due to such poor service and as a new restaurant I would be interested in feedback but there response was ok – they clearly do not care – I can only assume they have no stake in the business and if I was the owner I would be looking to get some staff with customer service skills and a little bit of drive and enthusiasm to take things forward.

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