12/19/14 Burger & Lobster, London
Words by Margarita Buenaventura
A name so simple and straightforward doesn’t leave much room for excitement. But Burger & Lobster doesn’t seem to be worried about its plainness. Rare is the restaurant whose confidence is so overt: with only three items on its menu, Burger & Lobster would much rather speak through its dishes.
Sitting at the nucleus of London’s Soho, the restaurant’s interiors echo its menu’s penchant for simplicity. Exposed brick walls are set against red leather seating, and flanked by a welcoming bar and an open kitchen. Vintage pendant lights illuminate the space with warmth, setting the tone for such hearty dining.
On the succinct menu is a beef burger made of corn-fed steak from Nebraska, featuring richness represented by its natural marbling. Its lobster roll is just as hefty, its fresh meat dressed in Japanese mayonnaise and encased in a toasted brioche bun. But Burger & Lobster’s real standout is its 1.5lb whole lobster. Served steamed or grilled, the Nova Scotia-bred lobsters are juicy from head to tail.
When NOUS visited on a November lunch hour, the place had no shortage of well-heeled vacationers and businessmen ferried in from nearby Mayfair. Server Pedro shares that they also offer a drinks menu that specifies which wine and beer go particularly well with their menu items.
They were undergoing a menu renovation at the time of writing, but Pedro shared a few his personal drinks preferences. “I come from Portugal, and there’s a lot of seafood in the town I lived in. We like to drink beer with our seafood,” he says. “Here, I would say the Japanese beers go well with the lobsters, because they’re very light.”
Perhaps as a bid to reinforce its fondness for a fuss-free feast, the Burger & Lobster group has also set up shop near Bond Street Station called Smack Deli, which Pedro recommends to a crowd on the go. Smack Deli also offers the whole lobster, and its lobster roll selection features a variety of dressing and toppings.
“It’s a takeaway place,” says Pedro. “They have almost the same menu as we do here, but a little cheaper. It’s still good, of course.”