After a bizarre twitter invite to try their new burger, i happened upon my local TGI Fridays for a nostalgic step back in time to my teenage years. TGI Fridays followed by the cinema was pretty much what i did on a Saturday before i looked old enough to buy alcohol. Then i'd substitute TGIs for a nice sit in a park with my friends and a bottle of cheap booze. Wholesome stuff i'm sure you can all relate to.
I wasn't expecting much from a TGI burger. I presumed it wouldn't be allowed to be served pink in the middle (i was right), the beef would be bone dry (i was wrong), flavourless (hmm) and the toppings would overwhelm everything such that it would taste more like a BLT than a burger (well, kind of).
A smiley waitress greeted and seated us and looked rather excited when i said "I'll have what Jack's having" - the passphrase needed to get you their newly developed off-menu burger. "Oooh, I didn't think that was available yet!" she said. How exciting.
When my as yet nameless burger arrived, it was evident i wouldn't need to eat again for a few days. These things are huge. There was a thick layer of chilli's, peppers, beef chilli, cheese and crunchy deep-fried onion strings on top of the patty. This packed a fair bit of flavour which did a fair job of disguising the blandness of the beef patty below.
The patty had been fairly well seasoned, but was over cooked for my tastes, the beef overly ground and it was covered in a sticky sweet sauce which i imagine is their Jack Daniels glaze. Under the patty was a layer of tomato and chopped raw red onion in a thousand-islandish sauce. The brioche bun was pretty decent, soft and fresh. The burger comes with a small bowl of a sickly sweet bbqish dipping sauce which I wasn't a fan of.
Why so many ingredients & flavours? i don't think the beef got a look-in at design time.
Yup, its party time in a TGI Fridays.Ok my expectations were low, but this wasn't too bad. To summarise, its pretty decent cheesy-beef-chilli served in a large bland burger. Service was great, and my Sam Adams beer was perfectly ice cold.
There is bound to be one near you.