Is Fat Burger the halal McDonald’s of the UK? Whilst I believe McDonald’s should roll out some halal franchises across the UK, it hasn’t happened yet. Apart from one occasion, in Southhall, where they had made one McDonald’s halal. McDonald’s claimed it wasn’t popular and therefore stopped serving halal meat. In my opinion, the location they chose was a poor judgement – which may have lead to that failure and belief that a halal McDonald’s would not work.
So what intrigued me about Fat Burger the most was that it was a popular franchising fast-food chain restaurant in Los Angeles. They had opened up two locations in the UK, one was in Camden, London. I had to visit.
I was imagining this could be an alternative to McDonald’s. I wasn’t expecting it to be gourmet or fancy. I was expecting fast-food with a high standard. A bit like McDonald’s. Upon approach to Fat Burger, it was looking good, I was digging the house style. It looked like an American fast-food diner.
A little about the MEAT and assembly of the burgers from Fat Burger
Fat Burger uses non-frozen and unprocessed lean beef. Great! However, using lean beef essentially means less fat on a burger. Less fat means less flavour and juiciness, in my opinion. I didn’t have my expectations high for Fat Burger considering it was lean beef. You also have to keep in mind that it’s not gourmet. However, there were certain things I expected to be standard.
Let’s play a quick little game. Let’s create a basic beef burger. You can pick 5 main ingredients in order to make the burger. What will it be? I would choose a soft brioche bun, beef patty (of course), pickles, ketchup and American cheese. A monkey could make and serve this.
Here’s the assembly of the standard Fat Burger, burger: mayo, lettuce, tomato, pickles, onion, relish, mustard and the patty. What do you notice missing from the burger? CHEESE!
The standard burger at Fat Burger costs £6.25 for a single patty and doesn’t even come with cheese?! Outrageous. If you want cheese with your burger, it costs an extra £1.
Without the cheese, you pretty much have a dry bun, a dry patty and just a dry day. I know because we ordered one.
Regardless of the cheese incident. We ordered two burger meals. One was the standard beef burger without any extras and the other was the same burger but with turkey bacon and American cheese. Both for £2 extra.
We visited on a Tuesday which meant that Fat Burger would double the patty on your burger. So we ordered single beef burgers, and they made it into a double, for free. Feels better about paying extra for the cheese now, I guess. We also ordered some buffalo wings. Fat Burger offers a wide range of heat to choose from to go on your buffalo wings. I went for the Carolina Fire BBQ flavour.
Keep in mind I visited on a Tuesday where they double your patty for free.
- £6.25 Single Beef Patty Burger (doubled for free)
- £8.25 Single Beef Patty Burger (doubled for free + bacon + American cheese)
- £2.25 Skinny Fries
- £4.70 2 Medium Drinks
- £4.00 Chilli (Con Carne) Cheese Fries
- £6.00 Buffalo Wings
Total: £31.45 (We only saved £5 from the double your patty on Tuesday offer).
Quite pricey for a fast-food restaurant. If I didn’t order the extras on my burgers or the extra sides (Chilli Cheese fries and Buffalo Wings) the price will be £21.70. Which is still high for a fast-food joint.
Read my article about the limited Edition Gourmet burger (with glazed doughnuts as buns), buffalo wings and fries all for under £25
So, what’s the verdict?
As I said, my expectations were not high. I wasn’t expecting a juicy gourmet burger (even though it was priced as one). For a fast-food chain, the service was slow. Took about 20 minutes to get the food and the place was empty.
I watched the burgers as it sat on cooker being pressed to death by the chef using his spatula. I can see the juices running away and I couldn’t do anything to help stop the harm being done to the burger. Regardless, I was hungry and wanted a burger. When the food finally arrived, it looked really good.
But not everything tasted as good as it looked. The burger was very dry, especially the one without extras. The patty was crumbling apart. It needed a lot of ketchup in order to be edible. Once again I was not expecting a gourmet burger but I wasn’t expecting a dry burger either. Disappointed with the burger I gave the buffalo wings a go.
The buffalo wings were cooked nicely but the heat I chose made it too spicy and just unenjoyable to eat. I guess that was my fault. The buffalo wings are available in 14 different heat levels. From mild, coconut jerk, cajun dry rub all the way to scorchin’. I decided to go for the third hottest wings, the Carolina Fire BBQ flavour. The wings came looking decent and tasty. But it was far from it. I blame myself. I should have gone for a lower heat and perhaps it would have been more flavoursome but I just wasn’t getting the right kick from the wings. So the wings were just a downer for me.
I’m not going to critique the buffalo wings so much because I believe a different choice of heat would have made the wings much better.
The Fries were basic. Nothing special. Nothing memorable like McDonald’s fries, which you can differentiate from other chips. It was just normal. The chilli cheese fries were the same basic fries topped with chilli con carne (spicy American meat stew) and melted cheese. I love my meat and cheese so this one did it for me. It’s not the best chilli cheese fries I’ve tasted but it certainly wasn’t bad either.
Every Tuesday, Fat Burger offers to double your patty. So if you order a double burger, they will make it quadruple for free.
Well, I was glad I didn’t quadruple my burger, as it was almost too dry to eat. But I did double my single patty burger. I added the extra cheese for £1 and bacon for another £1. I couldn’t really taste the bacon much in my burger but the cheese made a big difference to my dry patty. I would rather spend the same money buying a gourmet burger or at a cheaper chicken shop.
I was hoping Fat Burger would be the solution to all halal-eaters looking for something similar to Burger King or McDonald’s. Unfortunately, this was not the case.
Overall price totalled me over £30 for 2 people – Service was a slow – Price is extortionate for fast food. It’s really nothing special. Take your money elsewhere – I really thought this place had potential but was left disappointed.
– Halal status on all meats verified with halal certification
– No pork or alcohol present
– This is a child friendly establishment
Camden Branch: 10 Jamestown Rd, London NW1 7BY
Wembley Branch: 8 Wembley Hill Rd, Wembley HA9 6QU
Two on Tuesday Offer
They are currently offering to double your patty on Tuesday. If you order a single, they will double it for free, or if you order a double, they would quadruple it.
Last modified: 4th May 2019