A recent article in Bloomberg BusinessWeek called Have We Reached Peak Burger made me smile.
It’s a play on the word Peak Oil from the days when alarmist claimed the world had run out of oil capacity and the price of a barrel was forecast to reach $300. Now thanks to fracking and Iraq turmoil, a barrel sells for $70 to $90. Anyway back to burgers. So the market for McDonald’s and co. has peaked.
The Americans being top marketers, a new category has sprung up to take up the flak.
Viva gourmet burgers.
I was piqued by the BusinessWeek article because I’d recently discovered Holy Cow, just across the road from Cornavin station, in Geneva, Switzerland. So my taste buds were titillated by Twisper, quoted in a Tribune de Genève article claiming that one of the top 10 burgers joint in the world was under my nose in the Paquis. Could not wait long before visiting the Hamburger foundation, off to rue Philippe-Plantamour.
Very pleasant setting at the junction of streets forming a little place with trees. The terrace is packed, I spot a free table and rush to seat. Very mixed crowd with fair share of expats. Oops! I notice a sign saying “wait to be seated.” A smart young waitress come up and without being sarcastic ask me how many we will be at the table. She does not bat an eyelid when I mention that it’s only me. Cool ! I mean the good manners and very polite response. All the waitresses are in neo uniforms, mostly black with a few white tops, like in a four star restaurant. All the staff is female except for the cashier whom I take to be Marc Gouzer, the co-founder
Down to the meat of the subject.
The menus is simple, burger, cheese burger or cheese burger and bacon. I plump for the latter. With the menu, the waitress brought a glass of water and after taking my order now come a little bowl of green salad, very simple but the dressing is delicious. Now comes what I had anticipated so much World’s best 10 burger.
Nice presentation with a little bit of fresh coleslaw, and a well decorated basket of French fries. The hamburger is well cooked, the waitress had asked how I liked it when taking the order.
It’s nice but my expectations were hyped and I feel let down.
The French fries are small and skinny without much taste.
Without recounting my expat stops, just in Geneva, I prefer the Holy Cow burger. Slightly unfair comparison because my favourite Cow chew is a bacon burger with guacamole, something missing from the Hamburger Foundation. However Holy Cow service is hardly better than McDonald except that they shout your number to locate your table and plump your order in front of you. Pure foodie experience! OK for lunch time but the area feels a bit rough in the evening. The Paquis can be quite lively too but the Hamburger Foundation is just behind the Kempinksy Hotel and it feels like a haven of peace. At CHF21 for a burger, pricing is similar to Holy Cow.
It’s a great place to take a date or the family.
World’s top 10, I don’t know. Geneva top 2? Definitely!
Top 1 for a pleasant evening burger any day, plus there is no price for good manners and pleasant service.
Have you been to a Gourmet burger in Geneva?
Let me know, make a comment on this post and I’ll endeavour to visit.