Recently renovated, Wannaburger has transformed itself from a gourmet burger joint to an upscale fast food burger joint. The distinction is subtle, but very important. While before it was all table service and burgers that had to be eaten with cutlery, now it’s a self-service diner, with an emphasis on quality produce (think Aberdeen Angus beef from the Borders) and an eye for detail that lends the place a little bit of magic. Crucially, the burgers are now hand-sized. I agree with Heston: burgers should always be small enough to eat with your hands. None of this cutting in half crap.
The menu is straightforward yet exhaustive, providing a variety of mouthwatering options for both carnivores and vegetarians. There were four of us dining on the night we visited, so we managed to fit in a fair survey of the menu. We decided to bodyswerve the salads because that’s not really why you go to a burger joint is it? Although they did sound very nice. Ordering is done at the counter, where you’re given an exciting electronic order box that buzzes when your food is ready to be collected from the counter. Fizzy drinks are self service and refillable at no extra charge.
The bacon double cheeseburgers were meaty, juicy and ultimately defeated this particular reviewer. The halloumi burger was more restrained, tasty but leaving enough room for sides. The extra guacamole on a double burger proved a little underwhelming in terms of spice, but was compensated for by the sides. Onion rings went down particularly well, and fries (available straight-up or with Cajun seasoning) were just right, crispy but still substantial. A giant pickle that can be ordered as a side for just 30p was a particularly nice touch, lending a cartoon-like feel to the serving tray.
Despite being incredibly full, we did our duty as good reviewers and ordered desserts. A short stack of pancakes with maple syrup and ice cream was painfully delicious, as was the warm, homemade chocolate brownie, also with ice cream. They were demolished, even after we’d all claimed near-deathly levels of fullness following the burgers.
We had all this tucked away in a booth in a diner lying somewhere between retro and futuristic (perhaps “very now”, as my brother would say). Service was friendly, food was tasty and very reasonable, with Wannaburger ultimately offering a responsible local alternative to all those big, evil supersizing chains.