Butchers Club Burger – Hong Kong

Butchers club burger
Wan Chai, Hong Kong
http://www.butchersclub.com.hk/burgers/menus.shtml

 
The Butchers club is a very cool venture between a couple of American guys in Hong Kong. Unfortunately it is very “club” like, with bookings, exclusivity, and you can’t go in on your own.

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They are in the process of opening a Steak Frites, and have a burger joint which I was lucky enough to visit. The place is pretty small but bustling with people. They only offer one burger and duck fat chips, but have a secret QR code menu for those with smart phones wanting more than the normal burger.

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The patties are all house ground with a secret ratio of 3 cuts of dry aged beef. On paper, this place and it’s burger sounded like a dream come true.
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Unfortunately, like most dreams, the reality of it all isn’t quite what you’d hoped. Firstly, the positives: the burger looked great, and the patty flavour and cooking was splendid.

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These good aspects of the burger were trumped by some negatives that really took enjoyment away from the experience. The burger was heavily fatty, and not in a flavour way, more in a everything tastes like grease, and this actually feels disgusting to eat. Along with that, the burger contained almost no seasoning which didn’t help it in any way.

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Not a fantastic burger by any means, but the place is nice and the staff friendly. I’d go back to give them a second chance, and I’d definitely go to try their steakhouse, but I do hope Hong Kong has better burgers.

La Vache – Hong Kong

La Vache
Central, Hong Kong
http://lavache.com.hk/

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La Vache is a relatively new steakhouse; it’s heavily influenced by the classic French style of grill, No menu, simply steak frites and salad. My first thought was “what a fantastic idea.”

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I walked in on a Saturday night, quite early, and tried my luck. They were heavily booked but squeezed me in. Despite having to be out by 8 I was thrilled; walking in you could already smell the chargrill in full flight. Walking through the place was very classy and had this chic elegance to it, combining new wave minimalism with that old French feeling.

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I sat down and all the waitress did was ask how’d I like my steak, followed by marking my “placemat/menu” with what I had requested.

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5 minutes later the starter came out, a walnut salad.

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I don’t know what to say about the salad, it was at best a simple salad. The boundaries of plain were being pushed, but it definitely lined my palette and wet my appetite.

For the entire 20 minutes I waited for my main the bar was filled with a charred meaty aroma that just slowly drove you mad.

It finally arrived, and it was a show.

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The steak comes out on a silver platter, and the waitress dishes you out half. She then places the rest onto a stand with a candle underneath and finally serves you a mound of French fries.

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The steak came precut (a French way of serving, or so I’m told) and the first thing I noticed was the shear perfection of the cooking, perfect and even.

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The second thing I noticed was the aroma, meaty and charred. I dove in, after the first bite my face involuntarily broke out into a smile and I couldn’t stop. Everything was perfect. The flavour, the seasoning, the cooking, everything.

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It had a very particular beef flavour (I later found out it was American beef, which has a vastly different flavour profile to Australian beef).

This steak is something to be relished, and at 285HKD (a bargain if I ever saw one) it is well worth the visit to get a fantastic piece of steak, charred on a grill to literal perfection; I enjoyed every bite.

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I told myself I wouldn’t, however they had an old-school dessert trolley come around after you’d finished eating, full of amazing French classics.

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The tarte tatin was just too tempting to pass up; A delicious end to the meal.

How well it’s cooked (Medium Rare) – 9.6

Flavour (Mind Boggling) – 9.7

Tenderness (Melt in the mouth) – 9.2

Overall – 9.5