Hongkongers got a taste of what’s in store, as American burger chain Shake Shack opened a one-day-only pop up on Saturday.
Shake Shack, which is set to open a permanent store in Hong Kong later this year, opened the pop-up store at IFC mall in Central. The design of the store intends to replicate Madison Square Park in New York City, where the first branch of Shake Shack was opened in 2001.
There was a lot of hype, with some people lining up from 7.30am, and many more queing up ahead of its opening at 11am. But putting all the hype over to one side, is the food actually any good?
The Shack Burger is basically the definition of what a standard burger should be like, with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes and a large beef patty, served on a bun.
Shake Shack buns are “potato rolls” - potato flour replaces some of the regular flour - and they are soft and slightly sweet, in a good way. It is an interesting change to the regular buns you might find elsewhere.
The meat is also juicy with a good meaty texture. It doesn’t taste processed at all, although it was slightly too salty.
Shake Shack’s vegetarian option comes with a crisp, fried portobello mushroom, filled with melted cheese, served in the same potato bun as the beef burger.
At first, I expected the mushroom to be watery and messy, but because it’s fried, the texture was crispy and not too rubbery. The main highlight of the burger had to be the cheese, which is a mix of melted muenster and cheddar. It comes oozing out of the burger as you bite into it.
The fries are your typical crinkle-cut fries, and there’s nothing to special about them. They are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, as you would expect. They taste awful cold.
The ShackBurger will set you back HK$50, with the vegetarian ’Shroom Burger costing HK$66. These prices aren’t the cheapest in town, but they are reasonable compared to other gourmet burger chains in Hong Kong.
Fries cost HK$27 for a regular plate, which is quite pricey as what you’re getting is pretty standard. Soft drinks are also marked up, and cost around $20.
Shake Shack’s pop-up opening gave Hong Kong diners a quick taste of what’s to come. Overall the food was decent, but it’s difficult to see what the crazy hype was all about. Although they might not be the best burgers you’ve ever tasted, it is still worth going just to see what the fuss is all about. Just don’t bother buying fries.
Check out what our Junior reporters thought here.