After opening a few months ago and becoming a highlight of the culinary cuisine to be found on offer at Kelham Island, the guys behind Urban Quarter have now expanded opening a second restuarant over in Sharrow. I’d been meaning to go to check out Urban Quarter for a while but instead of eating at the original restaurant, me and my boyfriend ended up at the newer and somewhat smaller space over on Sharrow Vale Road.
Walking in, we instantly found a space on one of the long tables managing to bag it all to ourselves. To say the space is small, think boutique shop size, they make good use of space with plenty of tables and space for customers without feeling too squashed in. Not in the mood for alcohol, though there is a good range on offer, I opted for a Fentimans Victorian Lemonade, the lemonade of choice of so many places right now.
After browsing through the short but to the point menu, our orders were taken within minutes. The thing about Urban Quarter is the simplicity, taking burger restaurants back to basics a little bit more. You have a choice of beef, chicken or vegetarian for your burger and they are all served on a brioche bun with rocket, urban sauce and a generous side of rosemary chips. You can add extras such as cheese, bacon or chutney to your burger for £1 each and there are a choice of sides from slaw to onion strings to salad.
Note that the vegetarian option changes weekly so every time you go in it should be different, however there was no specification that I could see of exactly what that week’s veggie option was so I don’t really know what was in the patty I had. Though saying that the patty was nice, full of a great mix of flavours, spices and herbs that worked well together and wasn’t too dry either. The burgers are smaller than your average fare, being a much thinner bun and patty but they are no less filling and the amount of chips you get certainly made up for any hunger you may have been hanging onto after eating the burger.
The rosemary chips were lovely, thin but not too thin and cooked to perfection. However, myself and my boyfriend both thought there was a little too much rosemary added to the chips. I liked the flavour of the rosemary and I think it worked well but the flavour was overpowering after a while and I think a less heavy hand with the rosemary would have been welcome.
My boyfriend had the beef burger with mature cheddar which he said was well seasoned, clearly good quality meat and though the patty looked smaller it was thicker so got good value of meat for your money. He also ordered the onion strings which he liked and thought they had a good flavour but because they were so thin they were difficult to eat as they did fall apart so easily.
For just under £25, we got two filling burgers with extra cheese on top, plenty of chips, a side and two soft drinks which is great value for money. We both left suitably stuffed full of lovely food and I know that I will be back to try their food again. It may be a simple menu but I appreciate the simplicity in a world currently full of overcomplicated menus, it is a great idea and something maybe more restaurants need to take into consideration.