Byron Canary Wharf: Burger-tastic (December 2013)

The burger revolution of the last few years has seen a proliferation of beef and chip pairings across London and much of the rest of the UK. Among the many choices is Byron, now numbering some 30 locations across London as well as a handful elsewhere. A lunchtime this week saw me try their Canary Wharf outpost. Putting to one side the unpleasant experience of commuting to Docklands and navigating the claustrophobic shopping centre, the chance to catch up with some friends and visit Byron was definitely worth it. The success behind Byron seems to be all about not doing any too pretentious, delivering high quality food quickly and efficiently, and also priced reasonably. This formula appeals to almost everyone and the restaurant was not only reassuringly busy late on a Monday lunchtime but also populated by a variety of suits and shoppers as well as the odd hipster. With just eight burgers to choose from, Byron is also great for the indecisive (and cynically, it helps turn the tables quickly too). Two of our party opted for the Chilli burger and one for Byron’s signature offering (containing bacon and their special sauce). The meat in my burger was juicy, the toppings fresh and the chilli heat pitched just right. Importantly, it was also a ‘well-constructed’ burger and did not fall apart during eating – a definite plus point and something far from commonplace in similar restaurants. There are some nice touches at Byron too: we liked the courgette fries as a differentiated side option and also the milkshakes served in US diner-style silver beakers. At around £20/head all-in, this is a good and reliable (if not boundary-breaking) eating option.