Premium burgers with quality beef in Jing’anGourmet burgers have evolved into “burgers with premium toppings,” of late, the latest being burger joint Grinder, which recently replaced Pho Tastic on Wuding Lu. The restaurant’s prime location on a popular F&B strip drags in an expat-heavy crowd during dinner and lunch.
The burgers are served in tin trays with a choice of fries or salad and a soft drink. We went for the Foie Gras Burger (RMB98), a juicy ensemble of beef and foie topped with Brie. It wasn’t as mind blowing as other foie gras burgers we’ve tried, namely because the foie itself was overcooked and the caramelized onions could have been sweeter.
We were also slightly disappointed by the Truffle Boy (RMB128), which is served with thick slices of truffle, Swiss cheese and arugula. Sagacious diners will be able to discern the quality of truffles; these looked great but lacked the mushroom’s usually stimulating smell or flavor—our guess is that they were flown in from Yunnan.
Ironically the non-burger offerings, which include tacos and salads, fared a bit better. The Shredded Pork Taco (RMB46), a juicy pair of soft tacos stacked with guacamole, corn, tomato salsa and jalapeños.
The crisp, deep-fried cutlets that comprised the ample Chicken Run (RMB46) burger were a tad dry on their own but improved with a slathering of sauces. The above average American-style chicken wings (RMB42) were coated with a slightly crispy batter, though we could forgo the honey mustard dressing. Each order also came with one homemade sauce.
Though we weren’t fans of the novelty burgers, Grinder’s burgers are still a steal for the portions. Based on the consistent quality of their Australian beef patties and toasted buns, we’re sure their signature Beef Burger (RMB48) is also excellent.
Where: 1097 Wuding Lu (near Yanping Lu)