If you read my last blog post, one of the places I took Phil for his birthday was Shake Shack in Covent Garden. Shake Shack is a hip, counter-serve chain for gourmet takes on fast-food classics like burgers and frozen custard.
Although I’m not crazy about burgers, Phil loves them so I’ve got this little mission for him to try as many trendy burger joints as possible. Why not? If you’re going to eat burgers, then go for the gourmet ones!
Located in the historic Market Building near the Royal Opera House in London’s Covent Garden, the menu showcases all the Shack classics, as well as a selection of location-specific menu items made with locally sourced ingredients. The burgers are 100% Aberdeen Angus beef and grass fed on UK and Irish pastures. All burgers are cooked medium unless otherwise requested.
Phil chose the Smoke Shack burger, a cheeseburger topped with British free range Wiltshire cure smoked bacon, chopped cherry peppers and Shack Sauce. To accompany it, he drank a pint of ShackMeister Ale from Thornbridge Brewery. The burger was melt-in-the-mouth and the sauce complemented the meat perfectly. The smokiness of the bacon also paired well with the cheese.
As for me, I went for the Shack Stack which was a cheeseburger with mushroom filled with melted cheese, topped with lettuce, tomato and Shack Sauce. The crisp-fried Portobello mushroom was heavenly, I could have eaten four of them!
Even though I’m not one for fizzy drinks, I tried a root beer for the first time. It had an unusual flavour which wasn’t completely unpleasant but did remind me of some sort of cough syrup. This wasn’t necessarily a bad thing but put it this way, I probably wouldn’t order it again. I’m glad I tried it anyway! One to tick off the list.
Now for my favourite part – the fries. We both opted for the cheese fries which were made from crinkle-cut potatoes topped with their own blend of cheddar cheese sauce. Whenever I have cheese fries anywhere else, they’re always really heavy, greasy and sickly with a proper ‘fake’ cheese tasting sauce. However, they were completely different here – super tasty, satisfying and left me wanting to order another batch!
To finish a hefty lunch, we had a ‘concrete’ each, which was dense frozen custard ice cream blended with mix-in flavours including strawberry puree, peanut butter sauce and brown sugar biscuit. Phil had the Union Shack variety – chocolate custard, St. John Bakery chocolate hazelnut brownie, fudge sauce, chocolate chunks and sea salt. Basically, a chocoholic’s dream come true!
I had the raspberry cheesecake concrete, which is self-explanatory really. Both flavours were really rich and creamy so I suggest that you leave room for it and don’t try to eat it on a very full stomach. Then again, we did have a double sized tub each so perhaps we were just being our usual greedy selves. They were delicious, nevertheless.
If you’re into burgers, then you need to pay this place a visit. But hey if you’re not, it’s worth going for the cheese fries alone. The atmosphere is bustling and reassuringly busy, the service is friendly and the food is memorable for all the right reasons.
Shake Shack, 24 Market Building, Covent Garden Market, The Piazza, London, WC2E 8RD. Tel: 01923 555129.
* Please note that we were invited to eat here and the meal was complimentary. However, all opinions are honest and without bias.