Earlier this month, Razz were invited to experience Gourmet Burger Kitchen’s Exeter branch. GBK was established in 2001 when three friends from New Zealand, including chef Peter Gordon, brought the concept of posh burgers to a restaurant in Battersea. Sixteen years later, the chain now boasts 80 restaurants across the UK, opening one here in Exeter late last year.
Sat opposite Turtle Bay in the new Guildhall development, Gourmet Burger Kitchen is the latest addition to an already large selection of burger restaurants in Exeter. The restaurant is light and airy, with a double height ceiling and large windows. This meant that, despite it being relatively full for a Thursday afternoon, it did not feel crowded. They offer a large menu – a dozen beef burgers, five chicken burgers, and four veggie burgers – as well as the option to make all burgers vegetarian, so there is something to suit most tastes.
Gourmet Burger Kitchen also have seasonal favourites on their menu. At the moment, they are offering the ‘Mr Lava Lava’, a burger with a Caribbean twist. This burger was the result of an in-house chef competition, and has been paired with a guest draught lager Red Stripe. We ordered a ‘Mr Lava Lava’ and a ‘Taxi Driver’ – a slightly spicy cheeseburger, one of the highlighted house favourites – and side orders of chips and onion rings. Both burgers were excellently presented, and cooked to our preference. We also ordered some sauces to accompany our sides, including the celebrated GBK ‘Baconnaise’. This is exactly what you would imagine it is from the name: mayonnaise combined with bacon, a surprisingly delicious combination.
Now, let’s talk drinks. The milkshakes at GBK are legendary. They come in a variety of different flavours, including the classics such as chocolate and vanilla, served in an enormous metal cup. If you want to be a bit more adventurous, there are also Lime or Peanut Butter flavours on offer. I would personally recommend the Oreo milkshake – but be warned, they are incredibly filling. If you order a burger, a milkshake, and a side, you may struggle to finish – we certainly did!
At first glance, GBK can appear to be on the pricier side for a burger; our burgers, without sides, were both £9.95. However, there are a variety of different ways to make the meal more affordable. All students can utilise a 25% discount on Sunday to Thursday when eating in, and all week if you are willing to take the food away. GBK are available for delivery on Deliveroo too.
For non-students, deals are also available. GBK have an easy to use and impressive app for your smartphone, which is similar to the Nando’s card. For just signing up, you get a pot of Baconnaise (normally priced at £1.25) and after three visits, you can claim a free side. It is also possible to create a basket deal: a burger, fries and a drink for £14.95, which is a good saving over the menu price. And to top it off, when you refer the app to a friend you’ll both receive a free side.
In my opinion, Gourmet Burger Kitchen offers the best premium burger in Exeter. Surprisingly affordable, well presented food, and a nice atmosphere mean that rival burger joints certainly have strong competition.
– Max Price