Honest burger might be London's most reliable. The house burger is packed with enough salt to choke a flamingo and a balanced ensemble of cheese, bacon and chutney. You'll be gasping for water in the cab home, wishing you'd opted for an uber lux. Honest Burger provides a lesson in successful expansion. It's Mongol-like spread is comparable to Franco Manca's. I remember queueing with a tinder date to get in to one of Franco Manca's first sites in Tottenham Court Road, loudly telling her that the manager had told me it would be a 2 hour wait. Half the line immediately left. Suckers.
It once set the standard in sourdough pizza, but a recent visit to the Gloucester Road branch left me flabbergasted. A disaster of seared dough and a blob-like ham/mushroom fusion. Like Marcus Aurelius, grabby expansion has exposed cracks in the Franco Manca empire. The administrators dispatched to distant boroughs have not administered with the clear-eyed majesty of their brethren in the Capital. The impoverished flatbreads that greet eager converts are limply splattered with soupy toppings with all the appeal of a half digested Quiche Lorraine making its way through a dysentry-addled urchin. All the while barbarians are amassing at the gates of Rome, barbarians called Voodoo Ray, Pizza Pilgrim, and Homeslice.
Honest Burger has maintained a decent standard. A special Rib Man burger named for the eponymous BBQ legend on brick line packed a pleasing piquant. Rosemary chips could dehydrate the Pacific, but were irresistible. Honest Burger is foolproof.