MEATLiquor, Leeds

Disclaimer: We ain’t hip. Let’s be fair, nobody who uses the words “ain’t” or “hip” can be. We’ve yet to pull any pork or buy a slow cooker. We say this in light of the ongoing rumblings of a burger backlash. As per, we’re late to the table on this one: this post contains burgers, and we like them.

A couple of weeks ago MeatLiquor invited us to a bit of a preview shindig before opening the doors properly. “Ta very much”, said we, before realising on arrival that the presence of a couple of million other invitees would make snaffling some of the food on offer a bit of a challenge. “Bugger,” we concluded, as we switched on the toaster when we got home.

Still, we had managed to nab a deep-fried pickle, and there had been someone from Coronation Street there, so the night hadn’t been completely wasted.

Fast forward a bit and we’re back in LeedsLeedsLeeds pondering on where to boost the blood sugar levels. Tempting as the Pound Bakery was, MeatLiquor got the nod.

Upstairs exists possibly only so that there can be a downstairs, which is where we were whisked, sharpish, to a space that, with its mismatched, cushioned chairs and low-beam red lights, is best described as “Working Men’s Club meets Brothel Canteen” chic. And we mean this in a good way.

A nice racket of motown and soul helped us to forget that it was a dreary Monday afternoon in Leeds. An absence of windows reinforced the effect. Three cans of Hobo beer later and I was ready to hit the dancefloor and pull out my renowned James Brown moves. Luckily, for the other diners, (of which there was a steady stream, even at this time) the food landed and I reseated myself.

ML Hobo

Let’s get t’point. The Green Chilli Burger, generously filled with the aforementioned hot stuff, packed more punch than “The Bad Boy of Karate” Mike Barnes. (Karate Kid 3. In my opinion the best of the trilogy.) I was a piece of kitchen roll down, and another beer up, in no time. Even Her with the Asbestos Tongue admitted to a tingling on the lips.

ML Green Chilli

By “Dirty” food we really mean “Messy, Cheesy and Saucy” (all appearing soon in Snow White’s lesser-known, adult-themed work), and that’s the domain of the Dead Hippie Burger, which had us scooping up the ‘special’ sauce from the tray long after the bun perished.

Both had moisture in the meat and a just-melted tackiness in the cheese. There was probably salad.

ML Dead Hippy

If you like your meat cooked anything beyond medium you’d best have a word when you order, but we liked that both came with a healthy glow of pink throughout, and seemed to have had a little rest before meeting their fate.

A quibble? The Patty Smith’s chips/fries up the road are twice as good and a bit cheaper.

The burgers were £8.50 each and the bill came to just under 60 quid. Of that, £25 was on food, the rest on liquid refreshment. That beer was good, and – clue being in the title – there are cocktails and top-shelf stuff for the hardcore.

Right. None of this is rocket science, granted. But, done well, like it is here, mostly, it makes for some reliably good tasty scran. If you’re going to do burgers, do them right, say we. And MEATLiquor really do. We loved ’em.

We’ve paid the same, and more, for what at best could be classed as mediocrity. (Coming up: Shear’s Yard…)


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