images-1As we type, Liverpool is planning its 2020 Decade of Wellbeing. It is also busily building The BIGGEST McDONALDS IN THE COUNTRY. A whole five floors dedicated to the art of the beef patty. We like that cruel culinary juxtaposition.

Can you have too many great burger joints? Dunno. Is a burger bad for you? (*Checks the back of Ronald McDonald’s nutrition fact sheet*). Oh, no. Who knew – they’re part of your five a day. Eat the dill pickle and you’ve practically scraped your arteries free of plaque.

So, for now, we’re surfing the burger wave and loving it. But we’re also getting very territorial. One SevenStreets review of Free State Kitchen (great, in our opinion) elicited so much bile and vitriol that we had to go back and check. Yup, still great.

We’re talking about minced beef and seasoning here, people. Nothing to get in a froth about. One man’s Nolita (also great) is another man’s Attic (also great), or Almost Famous (the Manchester joint soon to arrive to Ropewalks. Also great). Let’s not have a beef over a meat sandwich, eh? If you get the ingredients right, and slap it between a decent bun, you’re looking at a burger. Add cheese and it’s called a cheeseburger.

That’s it. There is no real need to post seven comments – using false names – about how Burger A is in another molecular gastronomy league to Burger B. Really, grab your shakes and move along. Worry about something else. Like how too much red meat gives you colon cancer (that’ll teach us not to read the small print in those leaflets).

I knew what to expect at Byron – it being a chain (part of the Pizza Express family). And I wasn’t disappointed. Their burgers, thicker than most, have a reassuringly red and juicy heart, and a nice, charcoaly-burned crunch to their outer edges. The bun is briochey and buttery. The service swift and friendly.

The addition of a slice of melty blue cheese makes it even more memorable. The fries, a little over salted for some, perhaps, are of the McDonald’s variety, thin and crunchy. Skin-on fries offer a little more potato for your pound. The olives are shit. Don’t buy them.

So that’s it. Byron Burgers. They serve great burgers.

Who knew?

Byron Burgers
43 Paradise Street
Liverpool ONE

40 Responses to “Byron: A Burger Too Far?”

  1. thewilk

    I need to know if they serve them on proper crockery and not in plastic baskets before I shell out the best part of a tenner, otherwise I might as well stick to Burger King.

    I don’t want to sound melodramatic but the plastic basket fad is the biggest issue facing diners in Liverpool today.

  2. I’ve been waiting for Byron to arrive for what seems like months now. Reassuring to know that it does indeed serve burgers, haha.

    More important in this article is the mention of the other places – I had no idea that Free State Kitchen even existed, and the news that Almost Famous is coming to Liverpool is epic. Those guys rock.

  3. Ha, I’m moving back to Liverpool in July after 3 years in London and I was gonna miss Byron to soak up the beers on a Friday. Chain or not, their burgers are probably the best I’ve had.

  4. Doc Daneeka

    Really. I mainly seem to end up with mine coming on wooden chopping boards. Which given the weight of some them makes me feel really sorry for the serving staff. Yes you Camp and Furnace : )

  5. Who gives a crap what they’re served on if they’re good? Would you prefer to pay a tenner for a shit sandwich on a slate tile with some artistically positioned parsley?

    Playing Devil’s Advocate re FSK, I did go to Free State Kitchen after the 7Streets review. I probably made a mistake ordering the chicken sandwich special as it wasn’t great. The bread was nice, the fries were not. The chicken fingers on the sandwich were overcooked. A can of pop was £2.50. Or £2 for one that isn’t an American import version. I am afraid that KFC has nicer food, though suspect my extra £5 went on the fact I was sitting in a gorgeous garden and that the decor and waitress were fantastic.

    I will go back and try the burger and hope it lives up to the hype.

  6. Philip Stratford

    They come on proper corockery and they are definitely a couple of levels up from Burger King. But the restaurant itself does have deliberate yet disconcerting “unfinished” feeling about it.

  7. Philip Stratford

    Went to Byron Burgers on Sunday. The burgers themselves were, as you say, great. But the service was really laughable. I wouldn’t let my girlfriend hand in the comment card she wrote, it was so bad. It was like being in an episode of The Apprentice where they’re tasked with opening a burger restaurant, with staff everywhere but seemingly without much a clue. The average age of the staff must be 17, and my girlfriend, whose enunciation is not unclear, had to correct the waitress’s “no cheese” reading back of our order with “BLUE cheese” at least three times.

    However, I think they have only just opened, so we cut them some slack and had a pretty enjoyable meal all the same.

  8. Philip Stratford

    I have not heard of you but your reputation seems to be proceeding you. As a self-styled burger connoisseur I will definitely be paying you a visit!

  9. Hannah Eisenberg

    Ahem. You do realise that posting the exact same comment on here is just you having a bitch about it. To hand it to them directly would have been much more logical 😀 especially as they left the cards out for a purpose…

    also, she mistook “blue cheese” for monteroy jack, and had to come back AGAIN to check she’d got it right!! :@

  10. Tristan Brady-Jacobs

    Great thread guys. We need to share our opinions more as most listings mags are too frightened to give honest reviews, and how are these companies to up their game and provide better service and better food if we don’t ‘bitch’.
    However a ‘5 floor McDonalds’? lets take a moment to listen – as that sound of another nail is hammered into our cultural coffin – jeez, we already have a depressing mortality rate from heart disease – but its cash!!! so don’t look, don’t think, dont worry about our city – its all fine…. mumble, mumble…

  11. Tom Lox

    This wasn’t a review. This was a direct response to you being rattled by the comments in the FSK review. The first five paragraphs do nothing to speak about Byron Burger and only serve as a platform for you to push and promote other burger places that you’d prefer to go to. Which, ironically, you then go ahead and state we ourselves shouldn’t do in the comments. Brilliant.

    It’s only the remainder two paragraphs that give us a sweeping ‘review’ in which you juuuuust about state they’ve got great burgers. Hardly a mention of anything else. This was not a review.

    If you want to respond to what you believe to be ‘bile and vitriol’ then just write an article called “A Response To The FSK Comments” instead of masquerading it in an restaurant review. I checked through the comments just now and it’s hardly how you describe, there’s a lot of sensible points that disagree with you but nobody is spouting flith, like you imply. I think your love for vocabulary has made you over exaggerate somewhat.

    In this article you’ve condescendingly stating that anyone with an opinion different to your own should “grab your shakes and move along.” You also imply that a burger’s just a burger and it’s no big deal anyway and we should all pipe down our opinions. (And don’t worry, you didn’t do that condescendingly either.) But you’re right. Completely! You slap some mince meat between a bun and it’s a burger! Throw a steak on the grill it’s a steak. Lash some cheese and tomato on some dough and it’s a pizza. We’re totally not worried about the quality of cooking here, just throw anything edible into my face.

    That’s it. There’s no real need to post two separate articles on why FSK is your preferred burger joint, we got it the first time. Grab your laptop and move along. People disagree on things. We have different tastes. Worry about something else.

  12. We don’t accept free meals for reviews.

    Dave liked FSK. We got several comments from the same IP address, under different names, slagging it off under that article. I don’t know one way or the other whether FSK is any good but I can recognise an agenda at work when I see it.

  13. Mark Walsh

    I only post from this account and I can assure you I’ve only commented on what I had to endure there. If you think there is someone posting here with an agenda then perhaps some moderation is needed, flagging duplicate accounts might be a start (although, trusting an IP address is fairly flakey). Maybe sending another less biased reviewer there would put the matter to rest or at the very least not mentioning it in the review of another establishment (after telling people not to do the same in the comments previously). More than happy to have my IP published along with my place of work to show there is no agenda.

  14. You may not. Someone evidently did. That’s why we did moderated the comments there. IPs may not be a great way to track sock puppets, but the sort of people who leave multiple comments generally don’t have the wit to try and mask theirs.

    I’m puzzled by your suggestion that the review was biased. Isn’t it simply more likely that the reviewer liked his meal and that some other people didn’t like theirs? A quick look at TripAdvisor suggests that the vast majority of people really enjoyed their meal at FSK.

  15. Mark Walsh

    It seemed fishy to give it a glowing review in two reviews (one completely unrelated) after telling the readership to not do the same in the comments, all seems a bit, well…biased. Alarm bells ring when half a review of a completely separate restaurant defends another, it all feels a bit “toys out of the pram”. I am not really arguing about the quality of FSK here, if people want to know what I think, they can read my comments and that of many others, it’s more about the almost patriotic defence of it in 3 paragraphs in this review.

  16. YorkshirePudding

    please tell me I’m not the only person who finds it ridiculous that you have to pay for chips on the side with burgers in any of these places. Dont get me wrong they serve a bloody good burger but thats no excuse to go all upmarket and obtuse by slapping chips on as a secondary item, the chips are cheaper to work with than the meat.

  17. YorkshirePudding

    Well i visited Byron Burger yesterday on my own, i was seated quite quickly despite being on my own. This may have confused staff though as i was left on my own for nearly 10 mins with no one to take my order or even ask about drinks. The greeter at the door should have been notifying waiting staff they had new customers. Anyway a nice lad sorted me out eventually and i got stuff ordered and munched through

    I had a Bacon cheeseburger which was Very nice, the sauce was a welcome addition and the Skin on fries were nice too, washed down with an Ice tea. But was it worth £15? the burger itself was nearly £10 and then there is the silly point of paying extra for chips. Dont get me wrong it was nice, but i could have made something as nice at home or gone to the Ship and Mitre and had something as equally good. If your in the mood for a burger and dont mind the walk go to Nolita cantina, its better value for money and your supporting a local independent.

  18. WasabiPea

    This is the weirdest ‘review’ I’ve ever seen. A goodly portion of it is spent telling people off for not liking Free State Kitchen (I love FSK by the way, it’s great) and the rest patronising me about burgers. Cheers for that.

    Seems a bit odd when you’re so ready to take issue with the quality of other restaurant reviews. Well, those by the EVIL ECHO anyway.

  19. JD Moran

    I think the issue with the Echo’s reviews is that they are consistently lacking in any form of serious criticism. Much as we’d all love this to be down to a consistency of amazing high quality food and service across Merseyside eateries, that probably isn’t the case is it?

  20. JD Moran

    Maybe it’s more a pricing issue then. I’d rather the choice of paying extra for chips on top of an £8-9 burger than be charged £11-£13 regardless of whether I want them or not. Also, if there are a few sharing, sometimes a portion or two between you is sufficient rather than a portion each. That’s what we found at the Clove Hitch the other week (excellent burger and amazing chips while we’re on the subject).

  21. JD Moran

    I’m not sure what your point is. That they didn’t go into any great detail on NoLita, Attic or Almost Famous or that they give them favourable comments? I can find some reviews on this site which offer comments which aren’t so complimentary to counterbalance those if you wish?

  22. Mark Walsh

    You can if you want, I’ve not seen a negative review for a food establishment on here though I did stop reading this section after FSK-gate.

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