Generally when food bloggers/reviewers get invited to a restaurant, you may see them mention it in the blog/review. Some examples would be “we were invited to…” or “we had the honour to be invited…”. But what really goes on behind closed doors? I’d like to share with you guys what the process was with Ribs & Burgers, because we ourselves were fascinated with the whole process! This is not your ‘normal’ type of invite, as the whole experience was quite different from what we’re used to, but I’d thought it would be nice to share with you guys anyhow!
On this particular occasion, one of Ribs & Burgers marketing personnels reached out to us to ask if we wanted to try their new Wagyu burger range. Usually someone from the restaurant or an outsourced marketing company would reach out to us. It was kinda funny because they offered to send us a loyalty card via snail mail with a preloaded amount, which in this instance was $40. It’s a rather unusual way of doing things because we’d usually be offered a free meal or have a set amount deducted from our total bill.
What I really enjoyed about this invite to Ribs & Burgers was the fact that we were treated just like any other diners! It’s a refreshing change from the sometimes smothering great customer service. We agreed to dine at 7:30PM, but no table was reserved for us and the girl behind the counter didn’t know what an invite was. We were puzzled as to why they even agreed on a time with us, as we literally could have come at any time we wanted to! It was hilarious because she even asked us if we wanted to redeem our loyalty card… Helen and I just looked at each other with amusement, then responded with “ummm yeah??”
Now for all you guys yelling at the screen… “TELL US ABOUT THE FOOD ALREADY!”, well here goes… the Wagyu burger was pretty ordinary to say the least. Holding the burger in my hands, I could tell it was lacking substance. It’s hard to describe, but think of it like the difference between holding an iPhone compared to a cheap plastic prepaid phone. The bun looked good when we took the photo, but it collapsed instantly from the weight of my fingers. I’d thought I was quite gentle but maybe I don’t know my own strength! One would think that the Wagyu beef patty would be the highlight of the burger, but it was completely overwhelmed by the other ingredients. It seems simple enough, there’s no way any beef flavour can shine through when it’s smothered by pickles, caramalised onions, mustard, BBQ sauce. These are all powerful and punchy ingredients, which must be treated with respect. The end result was an unenjoyable soggy and sour mess, it was not pleasant at all.
Fortunately we got some pork dinosaur ribs as our second dish. The pork was delicate and the meat detached itself from the bone with minimal effort. The BBQ basting was spot on, and was not too sweet like a lot of other BBQ sauces. If I was to nit pick, it would be the fact that the middle part of the rib was a bit too charred for my liking, but after my experience with the Wagyu burger, I wasn’t complaining. The chips were also fresh and crunchy!
Well there you have it peeps… the Wagyu burger which we were invited to try wasn’t good at all. It’s ok, these things happen. On the other hand, I can wholeheartedly recommend the pork ribs, they were fantastic! I hope you guys enjoyed this little insight into the workings of a food invite. We would normally finish the night by thanking the restaurant for their invite, and have a chat with someone about the experience and the quality of the food. On this occasion we didn’t get a chance to do this with Ribs & Burgers because they were unaware of our invite. We feel that it’s always important to be honest, even when complimentary food is provided, otherwise we’d be sell outs. I hope that they read this blog post, and appreciate the feedback with regards to their Wagyu burger.
Ribs & Burgers
Approx $30 AUD per person
Address: 1/862 Glenferrie Road, Hawthorn VIC 3122
Phone: +61 3 9818 8142