Brixton Reviews: Dirty Burger

Dirty Burger burgerBrixton Blog’s food/arts correspondent Mark Muldoon provides words and pictures after a trip to Brixton’s latest burger offering.

You might not be too surprised to hear that a new burger joint has opened in Brixton.
It’s called Dirty Burger, and it arrives courtesy of Soho House, an organisation that specialises in the kind of private members clubs popular with the type of people who own Apple Watches and (for the gents) at least one pair of red trousers. They’ve certainly got a good reputation for this high-end stuff. The restaurant inside the Hoxton Holborn Hotel was for a while my favourite in London, although its shine seems to have faded slightly since it opened.

Dirty Burger isn’t Soho House’s only attempt at creating a chain-ready popularist concept. They’re also behind Chicken Shop (skip your mains and go straight for their five star apple pie), and Pizza East (wildly overpriced for what it is). Now, you couldn’t exactly be blamed for staring at these offers and thinking: pizza, chicken and burgers? Not exactly living dangerously with their mass market concepts, are they. It appears Soho House have based their restaurant opening policy on the tastes of those most discerning of early-noughties foodies, the Fast Food Rockers. You imagine that if Soho House had decided to build a cinema in Brixton rather than a Dirty Burger, it would be wall-to-wall superhero movies and 80’s franchise reboots.

Effort has certainly been spent on getting the right look for the new branch. It’s a decent mix of the usual faded/reclaimed industrial-ish features, and retro-American diner seating. The Dirty Bacon burger (£7) is an okay 6.5/10 affair – there’s some nice caramelisation going on – but it’s otherwise fairly unexciting by modern burger standards. And by modern burger standards we’re basically saying that it’s not as good as the Honest Burger from Honest Burger. The veggie cop-out (£6) isn’t particularly innovative, but it is very good. It’s got a decent mix of crunchy and sloppy textures in there, and is tasty enough to convince this mushroom hater that maybe the vegetable isn’t the very definition of evil, after all.

The highlight is the vanilla milkshake, which is higher-end stuff, although obviously you’d bloody expect that for £4.50. it’s heavy on the cream content and seemingly pretty identical to those on offer across town at Bleecker St. Burger, and that’s certainly no criticism. It’s superb. You can pay £3 extra to add shots of alcohol in if you like, though if we’re honest Blues Kitchen do ‘hard shakes’ more inventively than here.

There’s strong ‘we didn’t have any better ideas’ vibes coming from the crinkle cut fries (an extra £3.50), which may have been acceptable at kids parties in 1997, but in a new world of rosemary salted chips and chicken fat dripped chips they make for a pretty pointless addition. Onion rings were exactly as you’d expect onion rings to be. There are monthly specials, and when we visited Sweet Potato Fries were a better alternative. You can double up on patties for £3, which throws the meat to ‘other stuff’ ratio way off, and only goes to highlight that our patties were on the dry side.

Crinkle Cut Fries from Dirty Burger

You’re left with a faint sense of ‘this’ll do’ about Dirty Burger. You’d have thought, with only five food items on the permanent menu, they’d have come close to perfecting them all. Like – and we’re sorry to again return to this point – Honest Burger has done. Still, it’s affordable, and as it’s a Nando’s style pre-pay-at-the-till affair, you won’t need to worry about tipping (pity the poor staff). It’s a place to swing by if Honest Burger is full up and you quickly want to eat before your film at Ritzy or gig at the Academy. But then, did you know Honest Burger do takeaways? You could quickly go there instead. So, you know, maybe just do that. Feel free to stop by here for a vanilla milkshake on your way back though.

Mark Muldoon tweets and Instagrams all the fun Brixton – and London in general – stuff here and here respectively.

Brixton Blog visited Dirty Burger twice. Once on their own bill and once as a guest of the restaurant


  1. So if you don’t want the Brixton Blog to exist why are you spending your time reading it? Oh, and even more time making comments…?

  2. So if you don’t want the Brixton Blog why are you reading it? And spending your time commenting?

  3. I have visited Dirty Burger recently and would like to say that I have enjoyed my meal and the service I have received there. I love reading about and trying new food places in Brixton however dissapointed about this review purely because it is impartial. It sounds more like comparison to/promotion of honest burgers. It’s definetly not an independent judgement of this new eating joint.

    • You’re disappointed with a restaurant review because it is impartial?? That is hysterical. I would suggest checking out your dictionary

  4. So dire is this weak ineffectual middle of the road entity that the content consists of reviews of shit burger chain, regurgitated press releases from boring sources and diluted bleached versions of stories lifted from Brixton Buzz. Brixton Blog came to Brixton. Nobody wanted it, it was just a means to an imaginary end for it’s creators, first of the new wave of hopeless post-consumer goons pushing up rents and talking shit like it was fucking Shoreditch. Bland bland bland who gives a fucking shit. So boring. Fuck off.

    • It was actually started by a young woman who has lived in Brixton all her life….
      Are you the owner of the shit burger place?
      Either way you should get your facts straight before going on such a raant, else you just sound a bit cringey and sad!

    • ….and please do post some links to your efforts of local community journalism. I’d love to have a read.

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