Food & DrinkGrub Spy

Irresistible fast food at Bunsen Burger

Irresistible fast food at Bunsen Burger

I sometimes think Dublin is a town that breeds clichéd fast food outlets.

You can’t turn a corner nowadays without another, yaaaawn, burrito, hotdog, pizza, emporium springing-up before your bored disinterested eyes. 

Of course a lot of people get super-concerned about the perils of fast food, especially in terms of teenage obesity.

And who can blame them?

But I genuinely think a lot of younger Irish people are evolving up-and-coming pavement gourmets in their fast food choices.

They definitely seem more interested in getting some big-ass tastes rather than…well, just getting a big ass.

Which for me partly explains the success of the imaginatively named ‘Bunsen Burger’ on Wexford Street.

These guys must have asked themselves the big question all aspiring burger-makers ask, with so many contenders already out there, what can we do differently that’s not seen as just another gimmick?

How do you elevate a burger business without becoming just another a PR health conscious catastrophuck?

Well, for rabid meat fans like me the guys got it nailed down pat.

Gone are the days when floppy tasteless chips oozed with greasy gunk and burgers were nothing more than scuzzy booze mops wolfed down after a pile of drink. The

Bunsen guys correctly figured the only way to instantaneously up their burger status and challenge for top-spot was to mince their own meat.

First off, and most importantly, it ensures a more loosely compressed patty that in turn gives a superior pink and juicy flavour-grabbing texture.

They then ‘smash’ a ball of fresh ground beef the size of a small child onto an atomic powered griddle quickly resulting in a rich heavenly caramelized crust.

The usual backings of lettuce, tomato, pickles, onion, and sauces etc., plus the bun top, are all then gently steamed under a metal dome. 

Then the taste… kaboooom! Concentrated flavor = concentrated craving = concentrated satisfaction. It’s a touch of genius.

I’m almost misty-eyed with contented carnivorous pleasure.

And then there’s Bunsen’s ultimate chips for added scrumptiousness.

I recently read a science journalist describe how to cook the perfect chip.

Plunging raw spuds into boiling hot oil instantly vapourizes the surface moisture which then mummifies the exterior into a hard crust. 

Inside the now mummified shell, the temperature skyrockets and the water that didn’t escape is trapped, steaming the potato flesh and giving it that fluffy quality we all go mad about.

Here again Bunsen scores top marks. I’m talking unsung treasure chips – outside a couple of other praiseworthy contenders around the city I have never tasted chips quite as good as these.

Now I’m up to my elbows in some finely-tuned fiendishly good fast food that is totally irresistible. I’m devouring a double-burger and watching the lengthening queue stretch out the door.

There’s all kinds – teens, office types, parents with kids, all looking for the same thing, a brand new everyday foodie Xanadu. Bunsen is a cool welcoming burger palace staffed with servers that actually like what they’re doing.

I have to say if these guys had a target in mind they sure hit the

Five Stars *****

Bunsen Burger 

36 Wexford Street

Dublin 2