Thursday, March 15, 2012
I'm sorry but no cheeseburger and french fries is worth $12.
So Burger Bach (pronounced "batch", apparently it's a New Zealand thing), is the new restaurant that is occupying the former Ellwood Thompson Cafe. I have never been to the Cafe so I can't compare the two, but let's just say I wasn't that impressed.
Burger Bach states it is a European Gastropub (ala Blue Goat), except that they specialize in what I guess are supposed to be "gourmet" burgers (if there is such a thing). Sorry, but I feel like if you are going to have all farm raised/natural foods you could come up with a little better specialization than burgers, which we all know taste best when they are made from the cheapest meat.
So I ate there tonight for the first time. The interior is fine, small, but accommodating, with a fairly large bar. There are 4 large screen TVs, but do not mistake this place for a sports bar because it is not. We were trying to watch the VCU tournament game (GO RAMS!) but no sound, and there is only one wall of TVs, so if you are facing the opposite way you have to turn away from your party to see them. It's a rather small place to have so many TVs at the bar anyway, the could totally get away with one.
But the colors are nice and it is pretty peaceful if you are there just to eat, a very modern feel going on. Though I really do not get this trend of having one really long table that you seat multiple parties at (Stella's has the same thing). It is just not functional and causes alot of issues. Personally I do not want to have to sit right next to a person that I don't know (maybe I am just anti-social). They would be better off having several two seater tables that they could push together if needed.
Anyway, on to the food. So yeah, it's $10 for a burger (which is their MO), which comes with, guess what...an all leaf salad! That goes perfect with a burger right??? It's an extra $2 for a small side of fries, which are cooked Five Guys style, fried in peanut oil. I don't know about you but if I am going to order a burger (and fries) I want my fries to be as greasy and as bad for you as possible, because that is the way they taste best. I am not hoping that my fries are healthy for me. If you want healthy you should not be ordering a burger and fries in the first place! Which is why the salad thing does not work at all!!!
I had the bacon cheddar cheese burger (as all good burgers should include bacon and cheese). It was good, but the bun was way too soft and the thing kept falling apart on me. Also it comes with thousand island dressing (ala the Big Mac's special sauce) and I prefer the good old fashioned mayo. But guess what...no substitutions allowed! Really??? On a burger??? Are they that spectacular that the "chef" absolutely cannot take off lettuce or add mustard??? I don't know about that. If I am paying $10 for a burger I better "have it my way."
Speaking of prices, they have a fairly limited beer list for Richmond (although the wine list looked quite extensive... so if you like wine with your burger you are good ;) ), and the only domestic beer they have is Miller Lite in the bottle, which costs $4!!! That is the same price as all of their craft beers on tap. And FYI this is NOT listed on their menu. I had to ask if they even had any domestic beers, and I thought I would be getting a deal with the Miller Lite (which I am not a fan of), but nope, when the check came I realized I could have been getting a craft beer for the same price. Let's just say I was not happy and recommended that that really needed to be changed ASAP, and if not, then it at least needed to be listed on the menu. Also, this place could benefit from some happy hour specials. Oh, and no free refills on tea or soda because they serve those by the "chilled" bottle, because it's the "real" sugar kind.
On a side note, my friends liked the Reggae music they were playing, but kept complaining of some kind of smell, which I just chalked up to fries, burgers, and onions (didn't really notice it myself).
I guess I am just not a fan of paying way too much for what should be cheap beer and essentially a cheap meal, no matter what kind of cow it came from. In my opinion you can get the same tasting burger at Hometeam Grill, Red Robin, Capital Ale, etc, for ALOT cheaper, and they already come with fries!!!
Let's just say that the taste nor the atmosphere was enough to make me want to go back. Their menu specifically asks that you let them know how they are doing and if they have "gotten it right". Sadly, I'd have to say no.