Wednesday, 15 February 2012

MEATLiquor - One Dead Hippie

I missed the Meatwagon and never found the way to Meateasy. So when MeatLiquor got the London crowd queuing at all dining hours, I had crazily high hopes for it. After a frantic schedule over Xmas and CNY, I dragged Bro with us for more objective opinion.

The room reached saturation point at 4pm on this particular Friday afternoon, and the queue began around 5. From half 5, we waited for a brief 25min in the cold before we got the little table by the long cage of kitchen roll. My cider was disgusting, I hated the fermenting yeast aftertaste.

When the food arrived after an hour we gave the oil-drenched metallic tray a good shower of flashes. The lights were dimmer than my bedside lamp, so excuse the photos.

Onion Rings
Massive onions were enveloped by even bigger batter, which was just thick enough to give substance but not drowned the sweet crunchy onions. Good stuff.

Buffalo wings with Blue Cheese Dip
Immediately we could smell the nose-prickling vinegar. The unexpected citrusy kick was a good preamble to the mildly spicy mini wings. I didn't get the wings frenzy that was commonly spread among the other MeatLiquor followers. What have I missed? The blue cheese in the dip was subtle, we all thought it was more sour cream than cheese, but went alright with the wings.

Chilli Cheese Fries
In short this was chilli con carne with fries. Fries were flimsy, limp and glimmering under flash, blanketed with chilli sauce and finally topped with lumps of dried minced meat, chopped pickles, plastic cheese. I'm not sure why some bloggers were groaning and moaning in pleasure... Truthfully it was quite disgusting. We didn't even get through half of it, simply because we didn't want to. 

Buffalo Chicken Burger
This would have been an epic burger; one well-greased burger with a juicy hunk of soft chicken breast smothered in thick sauce... had the chicken not been coated with a stomach-upturning, eye-popping, head-pounding (I can go on forever) acidity. The poor chicken must have been bombarded to death by lemons and limes, then kept in the vinegar pot to keep it dead till I ordered it. Those born in the 80's would know this candy called Super Lemon, the chicken coating was exactly like that, but without the eventual sweetness.

Look if the HOT pepper sauce is actually dominantly sour, maybe they should call it zesty & hot pepper sauce? Or just outright fucking sour sauce.

Dead Hippie (bottom right)
This definitely rescued some grace for the much celebrated Yianni. The double patties were dripping with beef juices, oozing with beefy flavours and soft in texture with a touch of grainy chew; there was so much life in the patties! All stacked up with a good splurge of sauce and packed between supple buns. One good burger.

Mushroom Swiss
This wasn't quite as good as the DH above, though the patties were equally well made. While the mushrooms brought more bounce and springy textures, they also watered down the flavours. More to the point, swiss cheese is never going to beat American cheese in a burger.

The glaring music, current gothic decor and comical caricature was great for a one-timer; for me, not the most comfortable dining experience. But I'm sure it's a winner, judging from the snaking queue when we left at 8. As for the grub, I reckon it's sorely overrated. Of the three burgers we ordered, I thought only one ticked all the boxes, and even so, it didn't quite take me to burger heaven. The rest of the food is just typical American diner kinda grub. I'll do it again, but only on a no-queue day for a takeaway of the Dead Hippie, thanks.

74 Welbeck Street
Tel: 0207 224 4239

MEATliquor on Urbanspoon
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  1. oh that's a shame you didn't enjoy! my bf loves the burgers and chilli fries here, and quite a few of my foodie friends have also been nodding their heads with estactic approval?! i've yet to go but very much looking forward to it... do you think maybe they were having a bad day with the chilli fries? lol

    1. Hmm..I did find it strange to be the odd one out. Perhaps I'm not big enough a fan for this kind of food, or I wasn't hungry enough, and on top of incredibly high expectations, it all fell through. I agree it was one mighty Dead Hippie though, which saves me to lean slightly closer to the norm...

      I'm gonna check out Lucky Chip soon... if I don't like that either, then I know I'm pure alien inside... or vegetarian... same difference...

  2. I went for lunch today, was so craving after reading your post, it was awesome!!! We had the chilli cheese fries and I went for the original bacon cheeseburger and the meat was so smoky and full of flavour!

    The fries were fresh out the fryer and comparing my pics with your pics, my chilli meat looked saucier than yours and the cheese hadn't yet melted, so maybe it was fresher?

    Maybe you should give it the one more try? :)

    Ooh, look forward to your post on lucky chip! x

    1. Okay I'll write my experience off, only because your recommendations have been good - we hit Iberica the other day and Mister became addicted to the trio of Iberico jamon:) I guess if I dodge the buffalo chicks next time, I'll be able to taste everything else properly!

  3. Lol glad you both enjoyed Iberica, I'm going to be going back again!

    Yes if you go meat liquor again just leave out the wings and go for the chilli fries & the original beef patty burgers. Fingers crossed you get fresh ones! I'd say avoid the green chilli burger too, my bf had that and the chillies masked the lovely smoky taste of the patty :)

  4. I completely agree with everything you've said on Meatliquor. So pleased as everyone else I knew raved about it to a point of tedium!
    p.s. really pleased I have discovered your blog!