It’s been more than two months since we’ve been able to sit down at a restaurant, and lately we’ve been dreaming of where we’ll go once the national alert is lifted. Chances are, it’ll be somewhere that serves a really good hamburger.
When you’re feeling hungry, not much beats a good ol’ hamburger. A warm, hearty patty served with a side of crunchy fries always seems to warm the heart and soul (which we need right about now). Before school was closed down, we took it upon ourselves to find the supposed “best” burger spots, based on Tripadvisor ratings and student recommendations. Here’s what we thought.
Vivo – Fusion Food Bar
Situated right beside Promenada mall, this restaurant is well-known among shoppers. Dimly lit yet filled to the brim, with heaps of food being served to customers, we were curious to take a taste for ourselves. And considering its 4.5 rating on Tripadvisor as well as its popularity, we had high expectations as we walked through the door.
The restaurant was fully packed as we walked in, so it took a while before a server could even show us to a table. Once we got a table, we made ourselves comfortable in our comfy chairs while viewing the menu options. With a large number of dishes to choose from and the casual atmosphere of the restaurant, we quickly settled in.
Food and cost:
Since this place is famous for its burgers, that’s all we decided to order. We tried the Vivo burger (34 lei), Italian burger (29 lei) and Double Cheeseburger (31 lei). Unfortunately, unlike many other burger places, we had to order our fries separately. So we ended up getting a single portion of both types of fries, the cheesy version (11 lei) and the classic (9 lei). For our dessert, we only had two options to choose from, so we ended up getting Vivo’s cheesecake (15 lei).
Once the food arrived, we were glad that we had eaten light breakfasts. All three burgers were sizeable, with their fluffy buns, large patties and melted cheese, making it a hard time to wait while taking photos.
Of all three, our favorite was definitely the Vivo burger. Although maybe too heavy for some, its taste made it undoubtedly the best of the rest. A firm, large, juicy patty along with generous amounts of parmesan cheese and bacon combined for a delicious combo.
The cheesecake was exquisitely prepared, both aesthetically and in taste. The cake was firm yet soft and was covered with plenty of homemade berry sauce which made it taste even better. Chocolate crumbs were provided as a bonus, only adding to its overall flavor.
Our rating: 8/10
Although it took a while to reach our seat, the food arrived within 15 minutes, despite how packed the restaurant was. All the dishes we ordered were delicious, and despite their large portions, were fairly priced at around 28 lei each. The only negative was that the burgers we ordered tasted very similar to each other, with only some strips of bacon differentiating the Vivo burger and Italian burger. Though realistically, with the size of the burgers, you should only be ordering a single portion so you won’t be experiencing this.
Phone: 021 233 9688
Address: Calea Floreasca 246 Parter, București 077190
If you prefer a quieter and less crowded area, this is the place for you. In a small section of Strada Duzilor, surrounded by run down houses, lies a small and unassuming restaurant which most would ignore at first glance. If one were to take a chance and enter however, the clinking of wine glasses at the bar and the mouth watering aroma of burgers wafting through the air would quickly attract their attention.
Though the place was almost completely full, the waiter kindly gave us the menus while they cleared a table. While Vivo gave off the atmosphere of a bustling city at rush hour, Modelier’s small and bar-like restaurant made us fully relaxed.
Food and cost:
We decided to try two different types of burgers at this place. The first, was The Hangover (28 lei), which had a standard beef base, while The Lamburger (26 lei), was a unique composition of lamb and bacon. Cheesy fries were an extra 7 lei and for dessert, we chose the waffles with maple syrup and bananas (18 lei) out of the three available waffle choices.
Although inconspicuous and similar looking to any other beef burger, the Lamburger was a unique experience. While not as salty, the lamb’s rougher texture supplemented by the saltier bacon and melted cheese made for an enjoyable meal.
Our favorite burger from the restaurant was The Hangover. Although the Lamburger did have a unique taste, this one was simply the best. With a thick and juicy patty, a sunny-side-up egg, strips of bacon, and an onion ring to top it off, the burst of flavors from just biting into it makes it an instant recommendation for anyone visiting.
Our rating: 8.5/10
The service here was both quick and pleasant, with the servers helping much more than at Vivo, recommending dishes and answering questions. The burgers were all fairly cheap, with an average price of about 28 lei with sizeable portions for each. The only negative is its location, being somewhat in the middle of nowhere. Other than that though, this place is a sure go-to, and we guarantee you will enjoy your experience .
Phone: 0799 630 693
Address: Strada Duzilor 12, București 021472
Hard Rock Cafe
For our third and final burger restaurant, where else could we go but the iconic and famous Hard Rock Cafe? Located in Herastrau Park, we obviously had the highest hopes and expectations for this place, due to its popularity.
The place was fully packed when we came in so we had to sit outside. Despite this, the place had plenty of TVs and speakers playing 1900s rock while we ordered our food. Even when it started raining, the waiters were fully prepared and pulled covers over the sitting area to block out the rain.
Food and cost:
Although it was to be expected, the food at Hard Rock was significantly more expensive than that of the previous two places. We chose to order two burgers this time, one being the Original Legendary Burger (54 lei) and the other the Local Legendary Bulivar Burger (55 lei). We also got the Hot Fudge Brownie (33 lei) for our dessert.
First up was the Original Legendary Burger. Stacked with a huge beef patty, bacon, cheese and an onion ring, it contained all of the essentials of a classic burger. And while it was delicious, we did find that with such a huge patty and not enough sauce, the burger was too dry.
Our favorite was actually the second burger we tried, the Local Legendary Bulivar Burger. The dish in itself was actually quite basic, with only a patty and an egg. However, the way the sauces were mixed to make the burger was what really made it special. The patty was seasoned with a touch of Feteasca Neagra wine, garlic mayonnaise with onion and bacon jam. The sauces added a rich burst of flavor while not overwhelming the taste of the patty and not making the buns too soggy. All in all, a must have for anyone wanting burgers at Hard Rock.
Our rating: 7/10
We had extremely high hopes for Hard Rock, considering its popularity. And while we were not disappointed with the experience, there were things left to be desired. Namely, the price of the food. On average, a burger costs around 50 lei there, nearly double that of the average price at the other two places recommended on the list. This is not to say the food was not good. Despite the much higher price however, we found that the burgers were not particularly special compared to others. We still liked the experience though, and if you have a surplus of money and you’re nearby, we still recommend paying a visit.
Phone: 0754 400 900
Address: 32 Kiseleff Avenue, District 1, 011343
Tell us: What’s your favorite burger place? And, which restaurant are you most looking forward to visiting once this lockdown is over??