HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >
Apr 11, 2009 04:50 PM

Anyone eat at Flame in Berkeley yet?

Flame Restaurant on College seems open -- anyone eat there yet?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
    1. re: wolfe

      burgers are delicious! tons of options for burgers. all the beef is grass fed. I was happy to see so many veggie options. decor is super warm and service was friendly. really great addition to college ave. this is def my new burger joint.

    2. So we hit Flame earlier today for a late lunch. The place was bustling but not crowded. The service is friendly but a tad slow. Hopefully that will change. Both our burgers came out overdone. I asked for a med-rare and my husband asked for a medium, and both come out on the well side of med-well. We also had an order of their shoestring fries, which are McDonald's thickness. They were a bit undercooked--every so slightly crispy at the edges but flabby everywhere else.

      Burgers come with lettuce, onion, tomato and 1/4 wedge of pickle. Condiments are all on the table. Bun was a nice, soft sesame-seed. You can also request whole wheat. They also have a couple of creative salads that sound totally nicer than the usual salads at a burger joint, a large assortment of veggie selections, and hot dogs, as well as milkshakes, floats, Italian sodas, etc.

      I do hope they iron out some of the kinks, since the menu sounds so promising. I can handle the slowness, given how friendly they were, if they can turn out the meat to the proper degree of doneness.

      2 Replies
      1. re: PegS

        I stopped by for dinner and I agree that the fries need work. My burger seemed more or less cooked as ordered, though (medium-well) and it was quite good. Not quite "best burger ever" good, but pretty good.

        I love what they've done with the place, too. It may still remind me of a narrow "shotgun house" but it's nice, definitely not a Berkeley-style greasy spoon.

        1. re: Agent 510

          Just back from dinner - our burgers were both ordered "medium". They came rare - not really medium rare, but rare. That said I liked my burger, some char on the outside, about a third pound, good caramelized onions on the "Blue." Son had a strawberry shake. Came already poured with the tin still half full - very nice. Curly fries were good - served with ranch dressing. The "shoestring fries" are not - as was said before just generic fries & kind of flabby. Service - just ok - seems like young inexperienced servers. The basic burger is $7, fancier just 75 cents to a dollar more.

      2. link

        Flame Gourmet Burgers
        2985 College Ave, Berkeley, CA 94705

        1. Closest burger joint in those parts would be Barneys - which gets no love from Chowhound.

          How does Flame compare?

          1 Reply
          1. re: bbulkow

            I liked Flame better, at least if we're comparing burgers (not fries). Flame's had more flavor than I remember getting from any Barney's burger, and better-quality toppings.

          2. I went there last week. The space is nice--there's even an upstairs which looks out over everything. The shoestring fries are definitely lackluster, not worth paying the extra $1.50, and really, not much worth eating. My SO ordered the classic flame burger (beef with lettuce, onions and tomato) and I had a turkey burger. He enjoyed his, and I mine, but I've definitely had better. I like my burgers with a crumbly texture and no added ingredients other than salt and pepper. This one had onions, probably parsley and maybe something else and was pressed into the texture of meatloaf. The soda wasn't that great, it appeared to be kept in a pitcher with ice.

            Overall: the ambiance was what I liked best. Better than Barney's, but I would either spend more for the burger at Wood Tavern, the same amount at Barclay's, or less at the Claremont Diner. I'll try it again and maybe get the beef or something vegetarian.