Burger extraordinaire Matt Ester is the man behind @TheBurgerList – a blog dedicated to finding and reviewing the best burgers in London. With nearly 30k fans on Instagram, Matt’s gained quite a following over the years, and his passion for London’s burger scene shines through in his mouth-watering posts.
Matt says London’s burger scene has evolved in three waves over the years: when he first started writing four years ago, there were the established (chain) burger joints, the indie places and the newcomers. Then two years into his blogging, the indie places had become the established restaurants and the newbies were the hipster hotspots – and so the cycle continued. Now, because of the “burger boom”, new businesses are finding it hard to start out and you have to bring something special to the table in order to stand out in London’s saturated market.
Matt hopes one day his passion for burgers and the success of his blog will allow him to travel internationally, to the US and Australia. The blogger says: “Australia has a really big burger culture, it’s definitely something I need to try out…but I’m still not done in London.”
If you’re a burger fanatic, here are Matt’s top four East London spots for you to sink your teeth into.
When it comes to burgers, unsurprisingly, Spitalfields food market does not disappoint. Bleecker Burger operates a no-fuss, no-frill policy with a stripped-back menu focusing solely on the quality of the beef burger. Founder of Bleecker Burger Zan Kaufman quit his job as a lawyer and moved over from New York to start Bleecker Burger, operating from a food van on the street. Five years later, Bleecker have opened restaurants in Victoria and The Bloomberg Arcade – but they still operate on the street-food scene, staying loyal to their humble roots.
Black Bear Burger
A newcomer to the London burger scene is Black Bear Burger. Husband and wife Liz and Stew started out at Broadway Market on Saturdays and now run their business full-time in Shoreditch’s foodie hotspot, Boxpark. Originally from Devonshire, the pair know a thing or two about rearing cows and have put this expertise into their very own burger business. Black Bear Burger is a hit with East Londoners and, with just two high-quality burgers on the menu (‘Black Bear’ and ‘Brisket’), the owners stand by their mantra of using only the very best produce for their customers. Nothing complicated, just great beef.
Founded by three Aussies, Coqfighter came about when the trio couldn’t find any spots in the UK that matched the standard of chicken burgers back home. They started experimenting and were soon urged by their friends and family to take their burgers public. In terms of value for money, the stature of this burger certainly won’t disappoint and will leave you feeling truly satisfied. If chicken is your thing, don’t miss this mind-blowing burger joint.
Burger and Beyond
Located right in the heart of Shoreditch, these hand-pressed gourmet burgers are delivered to you from an old-school orange Citroën H van. The menu takes inspiration from all corners of the world, offering three burgers ranging from smokey to spicy. One thing is certain: Burger and Beyond will satisfy your meat cravings and, what’s more, the business prides itself on its choice cuts of beef, ensuring its customers are served the best-quality meat. Matt’s favourite burger is the heavenly 90-day-aged beef patty, with bacon and smoked cheese.
Have we whet your appetite? Check out more delicious brunch spots in London with food blogger Charlotte Moulder here.