This establishment has now ceased its lease with Aire Bar, but you can now find them in Jake's Bar on Call Lane.
This meal was free... but that doesn't mean this post isn't completely honest.
Twisted Burger Company a Sheffield originated business has come to Leeds to join hands with Aire Bar on the Calls. I haven't eaten at Aire bar since approximately 2009, it was just standard pub fare which did entice me to go back.
Leeds has an abundance of burger bars and American type eateries at the moment so I was intrigued to see what they thought they had to offer to Leeds that we don't already have.
I guess the fact that it's a burger business in a bar is one thing..
I found the menu a bit of a headache at first glance. It wasn't something I could read easily and pick out what I wanted straight away. With further concentration it became apparent that this burger bar is one of those over-the-top gluttonous and fashionable eateries.
The UK seems to be in a middle of a burger boom at the moment with these places now descending on the North with incredible momentum. A topic recently touched upon by one such food writer for the guardian (see here).
Enough groaning about such things... Here is what we ate.
We decided to share burgers and sides between us so we could both try out as much of the food as possible.
Some of the burgers sounded more interesting than the ones we chose but not wanting a triple (or more) patty we went for something we felt we could handle (without throwing up in the Aire in order to progress to dessert).
Directly below is the 'This Is Hardcore' burger, a double patty burger with 'Nduja sausage, American cheese, deep fried jalapeños and 'Harley hot hot hot sauce'.
In addition to this we ordered 'Pig Daddy Kane' (below), which comes with a double beef patty, pulled pork, American cheese, Kraken BBQ sauce, and chorizo & apple jam.
In my opinion a good burger is made with good quality beef, not over cooked and not under cooked, no grizzly parts, a good height (too thin and you're edging on McD's too thick and you're going to struggle to eat it), wrapped up in bread that isn't going to disintegrate in your hands and leave you in a big sticky mess.
Both of these burgers contain American cheese, honestly I couldn't tell the difference.
The burgers were okay as far as grizzle go, rather than two pattys I would have preferred a thicker singular patty that is cooked with a bit of pink inside and some nice juices to suit.
I'm not sure if anyone else has tried these two burgers but myself and D were left wondering whether they had gotten the sauces mixed up? The pulled pork burger definitely had a lot more heat than the hot one. I looked at the sauce inside the burger and the Pig Daddy almost certainly had chilli seeds in it's sauce.
The brioche burgers held together well and despite being baffled by the varying heats between the burgers they were okay, nothing more.
For sides we made a bit of a mistake and ordered two portions of fries..
We had the 'Pig Pimpin' Fries' and Cajun spiced fries.
We didn't eat all of our fries due to the overwhelming amount and also because we were sat beside the door to the balcony so the fries and I didn't stay warm for long.
Can I also ask, where have all the plates gone? Why must we be served everything in baskets? I get that it's a theme... but is it really necessary? You can't exactly get your knife and fork in there easily. Maybe I'm being a bit too British for my own good here... or pretentious. I'll let you form your own opinion.
There isn't a massive choice when it comes to dessert, but lets be Frank, this place isn't about the desserts.
We chose the chocolate brownie and ice cream and asked the waitress what the cheesecake was (as noted on the menu it said to ask the server)... she didn't know and had to scurry away to find out. When she returned with the answer 'chocolate fudge' we decided to go with that as our second option.
The brownies in my opinion were less brownie and more chocolate sponge, they were warm but not piping hot, my preferred temperate when eating a dessert combined with ice cream.
We didn't eat much of the chocolate fudge cheesecake. It had a buttery taste and consistency that I wasn't expecting at all. I'm not sure what went wrong with this.
The waitress had seen that we didn't eat much of the cheesecake and no doubt saw that there were a lot of fries left earlier in the meal (which we handed to a table of after work drinkers). She asked if everything was okay, not wanting to divulge at this point until I had digested the finer points I said it was fine.
She then returned with a piece of paper and a pen and asked if I could write what was wrong on the paper so she could take it back to the kitchen. I started to feel embarrassed but nevertheless wrote on the piece of paper my thoughts.
I know that I was offered this meal to review, but it was in my mind that I would later be required to write my review on my blog... not on the back of a piece of order pad paper (with a pencil).
The waitress only returned to the table again to enquire if we would like some more drinks and nothing more was said regarding the matter. It felt awkward at best.
Going back to the beginning of this post, what does Twisted Burger Company have to offer Leeds that other places don't? As far as I can see, it's location. I can get on-par or better elsewhere for a similar price. It will also have a shorter queue than Reds BBQ, and the much anticipated meatliquor coming to Leeds in June.
Or maybe it's just me and I'm growing tired of burgers and fries.