A few weeks ago I received a rather intriguing tweet one evening when I was getting into bed (must have been about 9pm) from TGI Friday’s, asking if I wanted to know a secret. Being the inquisitive little imp I am, I immediately replied and they asked me to tell them one of my secrets over DM before they would let me in on theirs. Of course I can’t tell you what I told them, it wouldn’t be a secret then, would it?
The secret that they’d been keeping close to their chests was that they were rolling out a brand new range of handcrafted burgers, but that the pièce de résistance was a secret burger, unlisted on their menu and only accessible by saying a code phrase when ordering in the restaurant. With Tom and I both huge burger fans, we were eager to take on the mission and taste a burger that claims to be so special it isn’t even on the menu.
Last weekend we headed to our local TGIs in Poole (Tower Park) to investigate. I ordered a rather delicious cocktail to start with – their Canada Goose; Grey Goose vodka, Amaretto, cherry brandy, maple syrup, cranberry and citrus juices. I think it goes without saying on seeing that ingredient list that it was incredible.
Then came the moment we’d been waiting for – when our waitress approached our table we had to surreptitiously state “We’ll have what Jack’s having” – to which the waitress rather excitedly revealed that we were the first to order the secret burger and that she couldn’t wait to bring it over. TGIs PR team had let the restaurant know that we were coming for a review and the lovely manager came over and introduced herself, as well as introducing the Head Chef who’d be whipping up our burger.
When the burger was brought over I think it’s fair to say that we couldn’t wait to dig in to the deliciousness that clearly awaited us. Being a closely guarded secret I’m not even 100% sure of all of the ingredients, but there was a brioche bun, full to the brim with tasty fillings – I’d guess at Monterey Jack cheese (or some kind of melted cheese), beef chilli, peppers, and crispy, caramelised onions. Served with Jack Daniels sauce on the side and their trademark chips. I think I’d eat most things if they were slathered in Jack Daniels sauce so I was excited to see a little pot of that on the side!
There is nothing I can type here that will describe just how good this burger was. Tom and I descended into indiscernible groans of food induced happiness – the tender and flavoursome meat, the melted cheese, the crispy onions, all fused together to create an unimaginably amazing taste sensation. Now I’ve tried several of the fancy London burger joints that generate queues around the block, as well as having visited America several times and ordered countless burgers at burger joints there (as well as it being one of my most ordered items whenever we go out for dinner) – so I consider myself to be something of a burger connoisseur, and let me go ahead and make a very bold statement which I also shared with the Chef when he came to see us afterwards – “This was one of the best burgers I’ve ever eaten”
Just looking at these photos is making me salivate a little in memory of just how good that burger was. TGIs is a restaurant that we used to eat out a lot at when I was younger (it was always a frequent choice on birthdays when you were allowed to pick your birthday meal) but I must admit I haven’t been there quite as often over the last few years. I can honestly say that after not only this amazing burger, but the brilliant service, we will definitely be heading back there ASAP.
Next time you’re in TGIs, you must order ‘what Jack’s having’ – you won’t be disappointed!