Considered one of the best places to get an amazing burger in London, Hache Burger is the brainchild of husband and wife team, Suzie and Berry Casey. What started out as a family run creperie in Camden eventually evolved into Hache Burger, with the motivation being to offer Londoners a quality burger sourced from the freshest local ingredients -a rarity at the time. Hache has been awarded “Best Burger in London” by Time Out amongst other awards from local and international food writers, along with a dedicated following in the city.
1 Tell us the concept behind Haché Burger Connoisseurs? When we first launched Haché in Camden, near where we live, (we’re just coming up to our tenth birthday), there were Gourmet Burger Kitchen ‘look-alikes’ springing up all over the place, so we knew we had to be different.
We have three daughters who moaned that there wasn’t anywhere local where they could eat really good, simple food at reasonable cost, in an interesting dining environment.
I wanted to produce a high quality burger offering, but Suzie, my wife/ biz partner wanted to create a chic, comfortable setting with massive mirrors, chandeliers and fairy lights where our daughters would feel as much at ease as their burger loving boyfriends. Suzie got her way, and the Haché brand was born.
2 Why did you make the career leap from art direction from restaurateur? After I left advertising I started a corporate design practice. One of my clients was an ambitious young restaurateur operating at the haute cuisine end of the market who, within a couple of years of starting out, won a number of Michelin stars. I was seriously impressed with his ‘modus operandi’ and his relentless pursuit of excellence, and I loved the buzz of his restaurants. We had already established very popular crêperies and bagels concepts where quality was paramount, in and around London when we got an opportunity of a site in grungy Inverness Street in Camden.
3 What makes Haché different from other burger joints in London? We had a very clear vision of what we wanted the Haché brand to be from the start. We knew we had to think ‘outside the box’ as there was already a number of burger concepts springing up all over London; many with big money behind them, so we had to be different. We eschewed the idea of having customers queue at a front counter. Instead we offered waiter service, a wide, creative selection of burgers, including vegetarian options, chicken, lamb and even a duck burger as well as imaginative Chef’s Specials. We introduced tasty starters and some pretty amazing puddings.
Hardly a simple formula for a business model, but one that has kept everyone, both FOH and our kitchen people challenged and interested.
4 Although the origin of burgers are German, the burger seems to be closely knit to American food culture. How does Haché set out to offer a quality burger in London. It is indeed generally assumed the ‘burger’ originated in Germany, but I must say I become a firm fan while traveling widely in the USA, and having visited Millers in Chicago, I felt it would be great to bring a premium quality UK beef burger to London.
5 What is your personal favourite burger on the Haché menu? I must say the current ‘Chef’s Special’, (the Cheese Squeeze) is pretty awesome. Even though I try to sample a different menu item every time I eat in a Haché, I’ve always loved our ‘Blue Cheese’ burger. If like me, you love Stilton, it’s a difficult one to resist.
6 How do you feel that Haché is more romantic than a typical burger joint? The simple answer to that, is we have never seen ourselves as a ‘joint’. Time Out, in its very first review wrote, “Haché is a proper restaurant, which just happens to serve burgers. You could even come here on a smoochy date.”
That about summed us up.
Hache Burger www.hacheburgers.com