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Best Burger in Hong Kong?

e_ting Mar 3, 2008 07:44 AM

Okay, so Hong Kong ain't burger territory, but there has been a slight proliferation of burger joints in recent years/months. Is there even one that's any good?

(Suggestions for burgers in non-burger focused places are good too - I just want a good burger in the SAR!)

to start the ball rolling, here are the places I can remember off the top of my head:

freshness burger
triple o's
duke's burger
main st. deli
burger joint (recently moved away from sheung wan location into soho???)

none of the above have really done it for me - mostly it's the quality of the bun that's the problem, but having said that none of the patties have been great either.

  1. Charles Yu Dec 15, 2011 03:46 PM

    A couple of years ago, I had a surprisingly good 'burger trio' from....of all places... 'Spoon' inside the Intercontinental!! They were charbroiled duck, seafood and Wagyu beef patties. All burgers were dressed with their own individualized dressing/seasoning.

    1. h
      HK_Traveller Dec 15, 2011 04:54 AM

      What about Grouchos in Stanley? By far the best burgers I have had, extremely cheap with no service charge, friendly staff, and a fantastic view overlooking Stanley’s waterfront.

      Burgers have sesame-seeded buns, fresh and juicy nz beef, and sprinkled with the usual condiments (lettuce, tomato, pickles, relish, onions) whilst offering a few different varieties. That plus cheap Belgian beer to accompany it makes it a clear winner in my books!

      3 Replies
      1. re: HK_Traveller
        PhilD Dec 15, 2011 03:29 PM

        Do we now have two posters with roughly the same names. Is there one HK-Traveler or two? Very confusing.

        Is Grouchos the little snack bar like place in the newish units next to the market? If so I can't remember the burger there at all which says something.

        I do like Oolaa for a good sit down burger.

        1. re: PhilD
          Charles Yu Dec 15, 2011 03:36 PM

          Interesting question PhilD.!!
          'HKTraveler' is one of the most senior Chowhounder on this board! For the past 4 years, I have had the great pleasure of sharing chowmeets with him each time I was in town!! A most knowledgeable foodie!
          As for the other one? ........?????

          1. re: Charles Yu
            klyeoh Dec 15, 2011 06:20 PM

            There's a HKTraveler and a HK_Traveller. On the SF Bay Area board, one of the most senior Chowhounder is rworange, whose moniker is a play on name of the late RW Apple, the renowned food editor of New York Times.

            I guess we all have to start somewhere ;-)

      2. i
        irene_ty Apr 29, 2010 11:59 PM

        I'm a burger fan, and quite frankly the Triple O's in Hong Kong aren't really making the mark for me, and Fatburger was disappointing. I would rather go to Burger King than those 2. Anyway, my favorite burger place so far is WOW Burger. I live in Wanchai, so the place closest to me is Shop 12, G/F, 51 Pao Woo Mansion, Cross Lane, Wan Chai, Though I know there are branches in Tsim Sha Tsui, Tseun Wan and Shau Kei Wan.

        There is a place in Soho (along the midlevels escalator) called Gourmet Burger, that I have yet to try. The menu is more expensive, but looks quite appetizing.

        1. k
          kardash Apr 16, 2010 02:24 AM

          On a recent grey day when I needed salt and fat, I tried the burger at Simplylife in the Citibank building and it was delicious. Meaty, juicy patty--good sized, but not huge. Brioche-style bun with a smoky flavor from the grill. A little ketchup and relish added, standard. The accompanying fries are better plain (they also offer spiced): thick cut rectangles with a steamy potato interior and just the right amount of salt.

          1. c
            Cameraman Apr 9, 2010 06:41 PM

            On my trips to HK I've stayed at the Shangrila in Kowloon and always enjoyed their burger.

            1. m
              Michael_Eats Apr 8, 2010 02:14 AM

              BLT Burger in the Ocean Terminal of TST is very good.

              The hamburger is definitely all beef (freshly ground, I saw them churning the meat through the grinder when I was sitting at the bar). Because its so fresh, they can cook it to medium/medium rare. All sorts of toppings too. Hamburger is great!

              As for mini burgers, I have had them at the bar of the Four Seasons and at MO Bar in the Landmark Mandarin Oriental. They are much better at LMO.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Michael_Eats
                SEA_BKK Apr 16, 2010 10:57 PM

                Second on BLT Burger at Ocean Terminal. I just had their bleu cheese burger this week and really enjoyed it. Definitely get the burger medium rare.

                For sliders, or mini burgers, I always order them in the lounge of the JW Marriot in Admiralty @ One Pacific Place.

              2. HKTraveler Jan 13, 2009 08:22 PM

                personally, i don't like shake'em buns either. find them to be quite subpar and would rather have a burger king instead. the best burgers for me in HK are 1) burgeroom, 2) American club. triple o is decent as well

                25 Replies
                1. re: HKTraveler
                  schung Jan 13, 2009 10:00 PM

                  american club is decent, but i'm not a big fan of triple o. too much goo on top. i actually ask for the burger without the mayo, and then its not as bad.

                  definitely try the main street burger in stanley. you will not be disappointed.

                  1. re: schung
                    HKTraveler Jan 14, 2009 01:55 AM

                    lol, then we are looking for different things since i like my burger and cheese steak with mayo! will give main street a try

                    1. re: HKTraveler
                      schung Jan 17, 2009 03:58 PM

                      i actually like mayo on my burger, but i'm not quite sure what the stuff they put on the triple o burger is!

                      main street is the bomb.

                      also try la baguette in lkf for the best sandwiches in hk. but you have to eat it immediately as the baguette is best right out of the oven. try the duck confit with avocado & red onion special.

                  2. re: HKTraveler
                    bucatini Feb 11, 2009 06:21 PM

                    Also try Al's Diner in lan kwai fong.

                    1. re: bucatini
                      Sher.eats Feb 13, 2009 02:43 AM

                      for the "diner" version:

                      Shake' em Buns - house ground blend of 50% chuck, 25% brisket, 25% short rib, the griddle is always very hot and the chefs don't "flatten" the patties.
                      Main St Deli

                      for "haute burger"
                      L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon's "mini" waygu burgers in Brioche and custom ginger-tomato sauce
                      Press Room's Roquefort stuffed Burger
                      Duke's Burger's Short-rib Ox-Tail Sirloin "burger"
                      Dakota Prime's Dry-aged-beef burger

                      "Fail" Burgers:
                      The Big Bite - "flame grilled" but the patty comes out grey and sad
                      Triple O's - Beef is not seasoned and they insist in cooking it beyond grey.
                      Burgeroom - too low fat content, dry even at medium rare
                      Gourmet Burger Union - new zealand beef = flavourless
                      Fatburger - under powered griddle = grey patties

                      1. re: Sher.eats
                        Charles Yu Feb 13, 2009 04:31 AM

                        Ducasse's Spoon inside the Intercontinental used to offer a 'Mini Burger 3 ways' in their luncheon menu, not unlike the theme that makes Michael Mina of the San Francisco 2* famous. The Spoon version consisted of a Wagyu beef burger, a lobster and prawns seafood burger and a duck meat burger. All nicely grilled, moist and juicy. Now, if they would only fry their French fries in duck fat, that would make it a perfect ' killer' combo!

                        1. re: Charles Yu
                          Sher.eats Feb 13, 2009 06:02 AM

                          the only places I know of (except my home) which uses duck fat for frites is The Press Room (triple temperature fried) and Chez Les Copain, a little bistro in Sai Kung....(chef/owner went to Cordon Bleu Pari)

                          1. re: Sher.eats
                            koknia Feb 13, 2009 09:04 AM

                            For reasons unknown I tried the veggie burger at Fatboys yesterday.

                            1. re: koknia
                              Sher.eats Feb 13, 2009 09:19 AM

                              Curiosity killed the cat? haha

                        2. re: Sher.eats
                          Peech Feb 13, 2009 10:26 AM

                          my friend had the burger at Dakota Prime today and it was HUGE... I had the awesome Reuben today and will try the burger next time, but will have to starve before going there...

                          Never really cared for Triple O's
                          Won't go back to Duke's since they want to charge me HKD 400 for corkage, or almost the price of 2 burgers

                          1. re: Peech
                            Sher.eats Feb 13, 2009 10:45 AM

                            you didn't try their "gourmet" beers?

                          2. re: Sher.eats
                            schung Feb 14, 2009 02:47 PM

                            i didn't like shaked em buns. the burger just fell apart.

                            and i think fatburger is the best fast food burger in hk.

                            never tried it myself, but i heard the chinnery makes a good burger. but its not on the menu.

                            also, i'll reiterate that main street in stanley has one of my alltime favorite burgers.

                            dakota prime's dry aged burger sunds good. will have to try.

                            1. re: schung
                              Sher.eats Feb 15, 2009 12:45 AM

                              what do you mean by fell apart, the patty or the bun?

                              as I said in an earlier reply, shake em bun vs fatburger:
                              SEB- patties are grounded in house with excellent ratios of beef cuts
                              FB- buys its patties

                              SEB- Patties are 1.5cm thick precooked
                              FB- latter's are 1cm

                              SEB - Chefs does not flatten the burger during cooking, yielding a 1cm patty
                              FB- the latter's do, yielding a 5mm "thin" patty

                              SB- Griddle's burgers to order
                              FB- Refuses to serve med. rare

                              SEB - grill is hot = maillard
                              FB - cold grill =patties come out grey

                              SEB - fatcontent around 30% (optimum)
                              FB - they don't know, but it's seriously dry (not helped by overcooking)

                              SEB - Toasted potato starch buns = high juice absorption
                              FB - Uses generic dinner rolls

                              SEB - Uses american cheese (melts and fills into the burger)
                              FB- Uses Kraft

                              I sampled fatburger once when they opened and again 3 weeks after, always sat on the bar to observe, the "chefs" are friendly by absolutely skill-less....

                              how do you compare main street w fatburger?


                              1. re: Sher.eats
                                schung Feb 15, 2009 05:22 PM

                                all i know is that the entire shake em buns burger, both meat and bun, collapsed and fell apart while i was eating it. also, it doesn't taste like 100% beef. it tastes like they mixed in some filler/cereal.

                                i think fatburger is a solid fast food burger. obviously people have different tastes, but i think it is much better than shake em buns.

                                finally, main street in stanley is just a solid restaurant with good food. and the burger there is awesome. tastes like ground chuck, maybe 80-85% fat, the right balance of toppings. i like it medium well, otherwise, too juicy. don't put it down once you pick it up and u will have no problems with it falling apart.

                                some people use a knife and fork.

                                1. re: schung
                                  Sher.eats Feb 15, 2009 05:54 PM

                                  mmm i understand burger bun "disintegration" (due to juice saturation, which isn't that bad a thing), but "collapsing"?

                                  I would really like to know what there is of Fatburger that you like...

                                  chuck is a pretty lean cut...your 80% fat stat. is surely a random number... FYI butter is only 80% fat. For some perspective the famed Pat La Friedas' "black label" burgers are only 35%.

                                  I enjoy my burgers naked (cheese if need be), with the fixings on the side for post addition after the pure beefy flavours have been savoured..

                                  "too juicy"?? the juice is where the flavour is, why don't you want maximum flavour?...some people argue ordering med rare does not allow enough maillard on the surface but that point is flawed as a properly heated grill can brown the surface before the center has been cooked past rare.

                                  but since you insist on med-well your liking of FB is less unreasonable although their single fried fries (instead of triple-temperture fried) are indefensible...

                                  not trying to argue per se, just trying to understand your POV

                                  1. re: Sher.eats
                                    tjr Feb 15, 2009 06:05 PM

                                    80% fat makes no sense.

                                    1. re: tjr
                                      schung Feb 15, 2009 06:20 PM

                                      i meant 80-85% beef with 15-20% fat. and no i didn't ask. it is a guess from experience.

                                      1. re: schung
                                        Sher.eats Feb 15, 2009 06:25 PM

                                        15-20% fat is pretty low for juicyness (given you order med.well)

                                        not bad a palate if you can guesstimate the fat content to the nearest 2.5%, more the surprising though that you would favor a single-cut blend?

                                        here's a nice read: http://aht.seriouseats.com/archives/2...


                                        1. re: Sher.eats
                                          schung Feb 15, 2009 08:00 PM

                                          very interesting article. i've read and seen many a good burger over the years. and my cousin has a small hamburger chain of 7-8 in seoul called smokey burger. he has experimented with a variety of cuts, and he now uses exclusively chuck. we can get into the various subtleties of mixing and fat content, but i've found that freshly ground chuck with 15-20% fat content, loosely formed straight out of the grinder, and cooked over a hot flame is close to perfection. you can go one step further and argue the merits of dry aged and fresh vs a blend of dry aged and fresh. some think a pure dry aged burger is too metallic tasting. i personally think it is a fantastic burger. and peter luger's does a superb job. one of the best bargains as well. last i checked, it was US$5 for a 200 gram dry aged burger. although, they only offer it on weekdays.

                                          anyway, everyone has their own taste. if i had the time and the inclination, i would loosely handform my own freshly ground dry aged 20% fat porterhouse and grill it over a 600 degree fahrenheit flame grill.

                                          1. re: schung
                                            Sher.eats Feb 16, 2009 02:25 AM

                                            mmmm i would go for 1/3 short rib (fat content) with 1/3 brisket (meaty flavour) and 1/3 hanger steak (offal richness), dry aged meaning lower water content so fat content has to be higher to compensate, so 30%...

                                            that charcoal flavour is addictive but the inherent structure of burgers lead to flare-ups...and cooking on a griddle allows juice-basting...

                                            at home I have a "mille feuille" of butter and blue cheese, allowing the butter to absorb the aromas of the blue. The aromas of burgers cooked in that butter noissetted must be one of the all time greats...

                                            seen this? http://aht.seriouseats.com/archives/2...

                                            just realised you're the one I had the pork chop bun chat with =P

                                            1. re: Sher.eats
                                              schung Feb 16, 2009 04:22 AM

                                              haha you're right! we had the pork bun chat. i remember.

                                              again,everyone is different, but i prefer a burger with roughly 15-20% fat content. 25% or higher, and its a bit too rich for me. and when you cook it covered over a very hot flame grill, no flareups and still juicy!

                                              but you're right about the griddle. my cousin also cooks his burgers on a griddle and covers it to seal in the juices. and his burgers are excellent.

                                              i generally don't like cheese on my burgers, but when i do, i prefer bleu or swiss. so your "mille feuille" of butter and blue cheese sounds very appetizing.

                                              finally, i think the video has been removed from your link :-(

                                              1. re: schung
                                                Sher.eats Feb 16, 2009 04:50 AM

                                                haha i don't think e_ting expected such "hardcore" burger fanatic talk =)

                                                pity the video was removed...the only other link i could dig up is a photo essay on egullet: http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?s...

                                                i initially posted it to tease you on your 80% fat =P

                                                come to the caprice lunch!

                                                1. re: Sher.eats
                                                  schung Feb 16, 2009 05:37 AM

                                                  thats fantastic. btw, caprice is my favorite french restaurant in hk. let me check my schedule and will try.

                                                  1. re: schung
                                                    Sher.eats Feb 17, 2009 02:22 AM

                                                    yay i should make you a burger special HAHA

                                                    1. re: Sher.eats
                                                      schung Feb 19, 2009 02:18 PM


                      2. k
                        kaile Jan 13, 2009 06:35 PM

                        so far have tried:

                        triple o's
                        hk golf club (dwb)
                        cassette (sp?) at the mandarin

                        hands down i think american club has the best burger. fatburger was decent too.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: kaile
                          schung Jan 13, 2009 09:57 PM

                          i heard the burger at the chinnery at the mandarin grill is really good... apparantly, noty even on the menu. but i haven't tried it.

                          fatburger i think is the best fast food burger.

                        2. s
                          sachubachu Mar 20, 2008 09:30 PM

                          Shake-em-buns - superb
                          Harlans - decent
                          Wagyu - great (massive and a little overpriced but nonetheless a good burger)

                          For anyone that has lived in ny, shakembuns is the closest thing to island burger (an old favorite of mine). the only drawback to S-em-B is their excessive use of Mayo.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: sachubachu
                            schung Jan 9, 2009 03:28 AM

                            the best burger in hk that i've had is at mainstreet in stanley. in fact, main street is one of my favorite restasurants in hk. its just far as i live in mid-levels, so i usually go there after a hike and reward myself with a burger, medium well, with all the fixings, including lettuce, tomato, sauteed onions, pickles, no cheese. you don't even need ketchup, mustard or mayo. 100% ground beef, with no filler. and medium well is still juicy..

                            1. re: schung
                              Kiedis Jan 9, 2009 08:33 AM

                              Shake 'em Buns or the Wagyu Burger from Press Room.

                              1. re: Kiedis
                                schung Jan 11, 2009 11:15 PM

                                sorry, but i can't eat the burgers from shake 'em buns. not 100% beef. soy or some filler mixed in. also, the hamburger disintegrates in your hands.

                                i also like harlan's burger with the truffle mayo on the side.

                          2. Charles Yu Mar 11, 2008 05:41 PM

                            Though a little 'off-topic'. but had an amazing 'burger combo' for lunch at Spoon the other day. Three mini burgers side by side. One is Wagyu beef done medium rare! One is duck seasoned 'exotcally' and one, a prawn and crabmeat pate. All three comes with interesting dips and condiments!

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Charles Yu
                              e_ting Mar 12, 2008 08:38 AM

                              interesting, i had something quite similar at l'atelier de robuchon too, though all three burger-lets were the same. bite sized burgers sure are nice - all that juicy burgery goodness in one shot - but sometimes, i just want a classic, lo-fi burger, and by the way this thread's going, it looks like hk is a veritable burger desert!

                            2. f
                              fpatrick Mar 11, 2008 08:03 AM

                              I thought I read Burger Joint was closed and was going to bemoan that fact - loved their selection of condiments on good burgers and fish sandwiches - but you say it's moved. Have you got a location more specific than soho?

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: fpatrick
                                e_ting Mar 11, 2008 08:11 AM

                                when i was writing that, i thought they'd moved to gough street, but when i walked past the other day, i realised it wasn't burger joint, but burger republic.sorry to disappoint!

                                1. re: fpatrick
                                  Peech Mar 11, 2008 05:22 PM

                                  Burger Joint is closed. My friend was the owner and was very sad.

                                2. HKTraveler Mar 3, 2008 05:49 PM

                                  Best I have ever had in HK are Triple O and the American Club. Not great but does the job for me. Triple O's burger is decent and to make it a good meal, get their milkshake too!

                                  5 Replies
                                  1. re: HKTraveler
                                    kure Mar 3, 2008 09:50 PM

                                    I had a really good really expensive hamburger at Harbourside inside the Intercontinental. Triple O's is OK.

                                    1. re: kure
                                      e_ting Mar 4, 2008 07:25 AM

                                      yep i've heard intercon has good burgers, but i've never had one there coz it seems a bit of a trek and 3 digits for a burger kinda pushes the whole utilitarian feel of a burger off the cliff... though i does sound good!

                                      1. re: e_ting
                                        HKTraveler Mar 4, 2008 07:55 AM

                                        I haven't tried it either but I am not sold on how mixing toro and beef would taste good. Wouldn't the taste of the beef over-whelm the toro and basically waste a good piece of sushi?

                                      2. re: kure
                                        Peech Mar 5, 2008 08:53 AM

                                        I almost tried the wagyu/toro burger but cudn't get a table at the cafe! Anyway my friend wo has tried it told me that she was disappointed - the beef and the fish didn't mix well. I am undeterred and will bring a nice bottle of big red and share the burger with friends - one day.

                                        Otherwise my favorite burger place is Shake 'em Buns. The patties are not all beef - they have diced onions inside. This makes the patties juicy and soft. Lovely stuff. If you like them big, try the Gang Bang (only available in Causeway Bay) with 2 patties. I have a video of my friend trying to pick it up posted on my blog...it's funny!

                                        1. re: Peech
                                          HKTraveler Mar 5, 2008 04:04 PM

                                          I tried the Shake'em Buns in CWB once but was quite disappointed. The burger literally fell apart when I was half way through! And as you point out, the patty is not all beef and tasted funny to me.

                                    2. t
                                      tk467 Mar 3, 2008 08:38 AM

                                      I have always struggled to get a good burger in HK , the meat always taste a bit off and the buns are sweet. There is a burger joint next the Delaneys in Wanchai that had a decent burger , but it was 2am and my judgement might have been off !

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