Over the past week, we’ve profiled hamburgers that push the limits of what a bun and beef can do, from Japan’s rice burger to the tallest and cheesiest options around town. This, however, only begins to scratch the surface of burger innovation, and specifically, Beijing’s creative affinity for the beloved cuisine. Below, we’ve rounded up some of the most unique offerings at this weekend’s Superhero Burger Fest, hosted by the Beijinger and JSS Delivery service, Sep 18-20 at Wangjing Walk.
Vegetarian Double & Spicy Vegan Burgers by QMex
As a preview of what’s to come for QMex Bar & Grill’s ever-expanding meatless menu, the TexMex staple will be unveiling two new options at Burger Fest, a Vegetarian Double Burger and Spicy Vegan Burger, both of which use China-based faux-meat purveyor Zhenrou for the patties. The vegetarian burger is a guilt-free twist on the classic cheeseburger, featuring two patties, two slices of cheese, mayo, and QMex’s special sauce. Not to be outdone – by their own options no less – they’ll also be slinging a Spicy Vegan Burger, complete with two patties, a vegan paprika cream cheese, jalapeño slices, tomato, lettuce, and vegan mayo.
Unagi Kabayaki Burger by The Music Bar
It’s said that not all heroes have capes, and to be sure, not all burgers have beef. In fact, some, like the Unagi Kabayaki Burger by Shunpachi’s executive chef, David Liu, which is made from tender, mouthwatering eel cooked in a garlic shiso butter mayonnaise and topped with egg between two seaweed buns, rounding out that authentic nori-infused unagi unadon flavor. This is truly unlike any burger you’ll find at the festival, let alone in Beijing, and is a must-try for every seafood lover who’s sick and tired of beef-centric burger options.
Secret Beef Rib Burger by Steam Rhino
Whereas most restaurants are content with simply grinding up some beef, shaping it into a patty, and throwing it on the grill, Steam Rhino is going a different route: fry up some ribs, douse ‘em in a savory sauce, and throw those suckers on a bun with a little mixed lettuce for good measure. This succulent, finger-licking creation is for the devout carnivore in your group, the one for whom no burger is ever burger-y enough.
Cholo 2.0 & Chicken Manchurian Burgers by Side Street
Side Street will be dropping two Burger Fest exclusives this weekend, both of which are spinoffs of classics from their menu. The first is a Cholo Hamburger redux, the Cholo 2.0, made from a meat patty that clocks in at a whopping 150g, topped with fried chorizo, goat cheese, mozzarella, chilaquiles, and sour cream. The Chicken Manchurian is a reimagined version of their cauliflower Manchurian appetizer, featuring a fried chicken patty coated in spicy Manchurian sauce and served with a bit of blue cheese dressing to counter the heat. And for their plant-based friends, they’ll also be turning out a vegan version of the Squatter, with a zhenrou plant-based patty smothered in decadent BBQ sauce.
Vegan Dessert Burger by Ping Dynasty
First, Ping Dynasty looked at Beijing’s craft beer market and seemingly thought, you have fun with that, we’re going to do something a little different, resulting in their delicious, crisp ciders. Now, they’re looking at Burger Fest and seemingly thinking the same thing, because the results are nothing short of mind-blowing. Billed as Beijing’s first dessert burger, this colorful concoction is entirely vegan and packs more than enough fruit to balance out all the grease and booze you consume over the weekend.
Images courtesy of the restaurants