Monday 18th May
I'm at Gourmet Burger King in Didsbury with Chris. People have said to me in the past how good the food is at Gourmet Burger King so I decided to try it out.
We're seated at the far side of the restaurant near the pillar thato holds the roof of the building up. It's a nice location. I'm deciding in the Italian themed burger Pesterella at £7.95. We go to the till to place our orders.
Cashier: "What would you like sir?"
Me: "A Pesterella."
Cashier: "Would you like chips?"
Cashier: "Would you like any extra sauces?"
Me: "Do they cost extra?" I say expecting them to be 10p or 20p.
Cashier: "We've got these." she says showing me the menu. It's £1.55 for a sauce, I'm about to walk out if it's £1.55 for a basic sauce.
Cashier: "Tomato sauce and mayonnaise is provided with the chips anyway."
Me: "I'll leave the extra sauces."
Cashier: "That's £10.70."
£10.70 for a burger and chips. Me and Chris sit down. At that price the food will probably be something really special.
I notice a guy at one of the other tables drinking from a half pint glass and I call the waiter over.
Waiter: "Can I help you?"
Me: "Can I order a half pint of beer?"
Waiter: "Wait a minute, I'll get a menu."
He goes to get a menu and comes back, handing it to me.
I look at it. There's no half pints.
Me: "Do you have any half pints?"
Waiter: "We only serve bottles."
It's £3.30 a bottle of beer. Ok, I get this. It's like buying a BMW in the 90's. The base model looks good value but when you want the extras the price doubles.
Me: "I'll have a sparkling mineral water."
Waiter: "Still or sparkling?"
He goes to get it and brings it over with a £2 bill.
The burger arrives. A 6oz burger, a tiny bowl of chips – about as many as in the McDonalds small portion. There's no salad on the side of the plate with the burger! I just blew £12.70 on a burger, chips and drink. Salad would be another £3.45.
I sometimes buy Aberdeen Angus beefburgers from shops to eat at home which are nice. This GBK burger is not quality. It's dry, has little taste and seems to be very light, seems like a 4oz burger (it says 6oz on the menu).
I look around and the place is busy. Why are so many people here? There's not a classy feel, it feels like a fast food place. Screaming kids, adults dressed shabbily.
Welcome to Didsbury.
Everyday junk food at gourmet prices.
The last time I ate out in Didsbury I went to a place called Saints and Scholars. Me and Chris went there. It had received lots of good reviews in magazines and had a good reputation. We paid £16 for a Mediterranean platter to share which on the menu said turkey, chicken, ham and other meats, pita bread, hummus and olives. When it came, it was a silver tray with about 12 thin slices of salami, a small pot of hummus, a few pita breads and 10 olives. To top it off I later found out they buy all the food they serve from Asda or Aldi – it's become a laugh aming locals. Although there's nothing wrong with Asda or Aldi, paying £16 for £1 of food is pushing it.
Eating out is often a disappointment nowadays in terms of quality, service and value for money.
There's 2 restaurants I know of in the whole city region that offer good food, service and value – East in Chinatown and the one in Circus Casino on the corner of Whitworth Street and Oxford Road. Otherwise I might as well get a Sweet Chilli Chicken Deli from McDonalds. I'll be going there after the restaurant anyway to fill up.
Summary and venue reviews: Monday 18th May
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Gourmet Burger Kitchen
Busy. Clientele: casual, smart casual, screaming kids. Décor: 6/10.
Notes: Very expensive for the amount and quality of food. The name gbk stands for Gourmet
Burger Kitchen, often mistaken fir Gourmet Burger King.
Gourmet Burger Kitchen Didsbury