So yes it took me a long time to actually get to Bunsen. Everyone and their mother has been raving about this place and its burgers since it opened in 2013. Quite surprising it took us this long we are big fans of burgers here at Gin & Griddle. The downside of having waited so long and read so many reviews, tweets, posts and the like is that our expectation were high… really high. And now having been to Bunsen… well possibly they were too high. A seemingly controversial opinion amongst food writers, bloggers, reviewers and really just about everyone that has been to Bunsen.
You will find Bunsen Burger on Wexford Street; it’s quite a small narrow space, simple and bare decor style, industrial in feel. We passed by at 12.50 on a Sunday – Bunsen opens at 1pm so we popped across the road for a coffee while we waited out of the cold. Despite arriving back at 13.01 we were the 5th table to be seated, popular spot!
We settled in excited for our burger lunch. The menu is printed on the back of a business card so its short and I love that. Your choice is a burger, with or without cheese, regular or double. You can opt out of the topping list should you choose (pickle, onion, lettuce, tomato, ketchup, mustard, mayo). Fries come in the form of handcut, shoestring or sweet. Drinks wise, there’s soda, milkshakes. There’s also a small selection of wines and beers.
He chose the hamburger and handcut chips while I went for the cheeseburger with sweet potato fries. We added a couple of glasses of pinot grigio (sure why not it was a Sunday afternoon!) and water. Everything is cooked to order, his burger was requested medium rare and mine medium.
Wine is served in tumblers, and again I kind of like it as it suits the style and feel. It was a bit of a wait for the food, but around 20 minutes later we had 2 trays of burgers and fries in front of us. At this stage Bunsen was pretty full, barely a table to be had in the place.
Somewhat underwhelmed by presentation I was still excited to try the burgers – that was what we were here for after all. Unwrapping the burger, soft white bun and a manageable size to hold and eat, not too much filling – it was all contained within the bun which I definitely like. We both agreed that medium rare wasn’t ideal in that the juices ran and it was just a bit too messy whereas medium held its shape more and was therefore a little easier to eat while still being flavoursome.
The burger is juicy, and medium was cooked perfectly pink in the middle. It just didn’t fill me with the ‘wowness’ I had expected. It was nice no doubt but I’ve had better burgers…quite recently in London, our burgers in Byron or closer to home we are fans of Real Gourmet Burger in Dun Laoghaire. They are not quite the same type of place, but still they serve burgers and they are really good burgers!