I just ate here at 23/5/2013, for lunch with my son. After 20min, I received my spring chicken and when I cut it, I found the inside to be raw. I immediately passed it back to the counter, and a mere "I will pass it to you." was replied, nary an apology nor an explanation. After 10min, I received the chicken, which I found to be the original one, just refried. The whole chicken became hard, tasteless and oily. What I am displeased with is that they reused the chicken, not a new one. And during thus entire incident, not a single apology or explanation was offered . This points to bad service and horrible cooking skills.
Burger Shack, sister to the famous Island Creamery, is one of my favourite places to head to when I'm too lazy to leave the confines of my neighbourhood. The portobello mushroom burger is a must try and their fries are TO DIE FOR.
I also recently tried the har jeong gai burger (prawn-paste chicken) and was blown away. I must admit it was a tad too oily for my liking though, but it was fabulous all the same. The bread was also very tender and just the way bread should be. Good work Burger Shack!
Ambience was weird as music was erratic and there was a lot of k-pop being played for some strange reason.
I read with much interest the opening of yet another burger joint, this time by the owners of Island Creamery who decided that they wanted to do something else besides making ice cream. And with prices starting at about $5.70 for a beef burger, who could resist the lure to try it out?
Occupying the space that used to house Melvados at King's Arcade along Bukit Timah Road, Burger Shack boasts a white spartan cafe like interior with a couple of tables and chairs for dine in customers. How this place works is simple. You place your order at the counter, make payment and wait for your order number to be called out to collect your food.
Double Original Burger - Greedy me couldn't be satisfied with a single patty hence I opted for the double ($7.70) with an addition of sauteed mushrooms ($1.50) and bacon ($1.50). To be honest, it was smaller then what I had expected and the quality was downright disappointing. The beef patties didn't taste fresh and had quite a bit of fatty meat in it. On the upside, you could see it as the patty being hand chopped rather then machine processed. Apparently their buns are made from scratch, like Everything with Fries so comparisons might seem inevitable. Actually no comparisons are needed as Burger Shack's buns came across as dry and hard - worse then most buns I've had. I honestly can't bring myself to believe that the buns are made from scratch.
Grilled Chicken Burger - The grilled chicken burger was sandwiched between the hard and stale buns but at least the breast meat was relatively tender. It would have been better if the fatty skin had been removed and they had added some seasoning into the otherwise bland and flat piece of meat. The tomato puree atop didn't help matters much. Don't get me started with the shoestring fries, which were hard, dry and proved quite a chore to chomp through. But at least there was seasoning.
We paid about $22 for our dinner and walked out of the place smelling of food from head to toe. They really need to do something about the ventilation of the place. Food for thought - Success in one area of F&B doesn't guarantee success when diversifying into other branches of the everchanging culinary landscape. And that is something Island Creamery has to think about. Should it leverage on its core competency and continue to sell ice cream or should it move into offering burgers? If the latter, I suggest they relook into their burger recipes before Burger Shack dilutes the Island Creamery brand name.
See all my pictures here.
Burgers - bread is big, patty is small. Patty is not juicy. Where is the mushroom in mushroom swiss? Where's the sauce in the Original? Not impressed. But the deep fried chicken wing is nicely done - juicy, crispy and hot. But I am here for the BURGER! At least the service is decent.
With generous servings and a student-friendly environment, it was no surprise that Burger Shack is a magnet for students studying around the Bukit Timah area. Owned by the chain of Island Creamery that most are familiar with, Burger Shack exudes the same charm, attracting students and youths with its chill and cosy ambience.
Spaghetti Meatballs ($8.90)
A rather dull dish as it had too much tomato content in its sauce, making it too sweet. The spaghetti was also a lil' overcooked, missing out on the chewy bouncy texture. The meatballs had a slightly stronger beef taste to it, and I personally didn't really like the sharp taste and smell of it.
Fried Calamari ($7.70)
Fresh calamari that was fried to a perfect golden crispy brown! I like the fresh tender calamari used and there was a crunch to every bite. Perhaps it's just me being a super calamari fan, anything that's fresh appeals to me. A slightly better QC would help though, as there were some really huge pieces clumped together and had thick batter that covered the taste of squid rings.
Nacho Fries ($6.70)
The serving of this shocked us as we'd expected it to serve as our sides, given that we were eating at around 3pm. It was a huge bowl, bigger than the spaghetti, but awesome for sharing! Just that we didn't expect such huge servings and over-ordered (again). The shoestring fries had special seasoning that brought out the savory bits and were fried just right, with no soggy fries at all! Coupled with the cheese sauce, it was a great blend of flavours. The beef bits, however, gave a slight 'mexican' taste to it, perhaps it was seasoned with jalepenos to give that twist of flavour.
Brownie with Very Berry Ice-cream ($4.80)
Same as the one you can find at Island Creamery, the secret to great brownies is probably serving it warm. I like how the brownie doesn't have overpowering chocolate taste (chocoholics might disagree with me) yet brought up the slight sweetness of chocolates and wasn't too sticky. The nuts added into the brownie also added to the varied texture of the brownie, giving it a homemade touch. The berry icecream, however, was quite disappointing as it had many icy bits to it, and wasn't smooth icecream. It felt like it had probably been placed in the fridge for a prolonged period of time.
Overall, it was a good experience and I would love to re-visit and try their burgers! After all, they're supposed to be known for their burgers. The food isn't exactly spectacular, but taking into consideration its ambience, some hits, and the affordability (given the huge servings), it is worth a visit. It's a really nice place for chillin' out and I can imagine it as one of my favourite haunts if I were still a student!