In the latest instalment of our search to find the ultimate burger, we sample the Elvis at Burger Bistro in Pretoria. The restaurant is owned by Corné Read and Jan-Hendrik van Staden, who’ve both been in the hospitality industry for years and love to experiment with food. They noticed that burgers in Pretoria restaurants are mostly added to the menu as an afterthought, so they decided to specialise in them.
The 200g pure beef patty of the Elvis is flame-grilled and served on a sesame seed bun with lettuce, tomato and Bistro mayo. The patty is generally grilled medium to well done, so ask if you prefer yours medium to rare. As the name suggests, it also boasts peanut butter sauce and bacon – two of the King of Rock’s favourite sandwich fillings.
The beef patties are made by hand and are never frozen. Corné says they don’t advertise their meat as free-range, but they’ve been to the farm that supplies the meat and the cattle seem very happy. The buns are specially made for Burger Bistro by a local bakery, and are baked in moulds to ensure that every bun is the same size and that the patty fits perfectly.
The potato fries are hand-cut, soaked in water for an hour, pre-fried at a low temperature and then flash-fried on order.
R67,50 gets you this peanutty burger with a side of hand-cut chips. (The owners don’t agree with charging extra for fries). You can also substitute your beef patty for a chicken fillet, and there’s a wide variety of extras to customise your burger for anything from R6 to R50 more.
Burger Bistro is getting busier by the day. Because of the small space, they’ve kept it simple, and cleverly so. The colour scheme is dominated by pillar-box red and the design is clean, with lots of rock ’n’ roll paraphernalia on the walls. It’s all about Elvis, fast cars and the fifties, but the emphasis is on the food. They pull in the neighbourhood crowd, which is always a good sign.
Have you eaten at Burger Bistro? Let us know what you thought of the experience by writing a review. (Until the end of September 2015, your ratings will decide the winners of the first-ever Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Best Everyday Eateries.)