Burgers! A bun, a wedge of meat (beef patty, chicken, veggie goodness - the choice is yours) and what ever toppings you want. We can debate our burger choices (The best cheese? Is fruit allowed? Should you ever use cutlery?) but for many, this is the perfect quick bite. Oxford is home to some cracking burgers so here, to mark National Burger Day, Daily Info runs down the best spots to find this scrumptious treat.
Nestled on Cowley Road is a true Oxford institution. With its walls decked out with geeky memorabilia and the very best of the 80s soundtracking your view, Atomic Burger has a distinctive décor that perfectly matches their menu. A burger here is all about the toppings, with a wealth of choices for you to try. You can go for one of their own creations such as The Johnny B Bad (USA Cheese, BBQ Onions, Hash Brown, Cajun Bacon, Buffalo Sauce) or The Dead Elvis (USA Cheese, Swiss Cheese, Fried Onions, Bacon) or make your own concoction of toppings. Atomic also make a mean veggie burger which, though a little crumbly at times, is absolutely packed with flavour. Plus, with so many toppings to choose from, you'll never again have to settle for the one veggie option available. There's even the Burger of a Month, a creation only available for a short period of time (I still miss the Garfield, whose topping was lasagne).
Alongside a menu of fried chicken, wings and hot dogs, Big Society offers some of the best burgers in Oxford. A juicy patty (100% beef) is paired with a nice roster of toppings, meaning the Big Soc burger is one of the more comforting choices on this menu, keeping things simple and flavoursome. My personal preference is the BBQ burger, which matches its burger with smoked cheese, bacon and red onion, with the dish all held together with a BBQ sauce that manages to retain a fabulous kick without ending up too sharp. Big Soc's halloumi burger is perfect for vegetarians who want to indulge as much as their meat eating pals, this greasy offering allowing for a foray into the truly unhealthy. Perfect. With a relaxed atmosphere and a great locale (it's next to the sensational Ultimate Picture Palace), the Big Society is well worth a visit.
All you could want in a burger can be found at Headington's one-of-a-kind Craft Burger. The restaurant feels particularly groovy, with its soundtrack of 70s & 80s soul and disco, whilst finding the right balance to be a welcoming establishment for all. The menu nicely covers beef, chicken and vegetarian options (as well as a fish-based one), offering a diverse choice of toppings. This, along with a friendly, welcoming staff, makes Craft Burger a contender for the best place to eat a burger in Oxford.
Fancy your burger to go? Peppers Burgers, a Jericho institution, has long been a favourite of students and residents for a quick, delicious meal to enjoy at home or in the nearby Port Meadow. You can choose from a beef, chicken or veggie patty, and add some salad and a couple of the wide range of sauces on offer (including Peppers' famous White Shark hot sauce, if you're feeling brave). Potato portions are generous, and I can highly recommend the cheesy chips. If you're still hungry, Peppers also does a delicious selection of sides, including onion rings and chicken wings.
I haven't ever enjoyed a chicken burger as much as I've enjoyed the Rickety Press chicken burger. Succulent chicken thigh, coated in butter milk, fried to perfection and then stacked with a range of delightful sauces, pickles and garnishes to ensure a complex feast of flavours and textures. The exact incarnation is tweaked every so often (evolving from the Motherclucker to The Cluck and now the Dirty Bird...) with a bit of experimentation to keep things fresh. I have to actively stop myself from going every week, for the sake of my arteries. Wear short sleeves as you might get messy forearms in the process of devouring it...