On a trip to Birmingham we were faced with the dilemma of finding somewhere to eat in the Bullring, our first choices were very busy and had long queues, so we made a hasty retreat from them and ventured outside to find somewhere less busy. Somewhere I had wanted to try for a while was Handmade Burger Company, and when we saw they were much less packed then everywhere else we finally decided to give them a try (after convincing the other half go there since he isn't a fan of burgers).
As we walked in I asked a staff member who was greeting guests if they did gluten free even though I already knew the answer, "of course we do, just ask the waiter downstairs for a menu", after this we were directed downstairs to the actual restaurant area. As we reached the bottom of the stairs another guy greeted us with menus and I asked for a gluten free menu which was no problem at all, he simply just grabbed one from a different pile, guided us to some free seats and told us to make the people aware on the till that we were ordering from the gluten free menu.
Gluten free bacon and peanut butter burger at Handmade Burger Company, Birmingham
After that he left us to make our decisions, not easy when you are faced with a menu of a good 40 burgers plus a few other options. The menu stated on the side "All these burgers are sealed in a fryer before they are grilled & therefore in certain locations we can not guarantee that there may not be traces of gluten in the oil" so always remember to check at the branch you are at just to make sure you are completely safe.
Another thing we noticed about the menu was everything was 70p dearer than on the regular menu, we put this down to the buns being more expensive, they already aren't the cheapest place to eat so with the added cost it is a bit of a down side to them. A fair few places charge more for gluten free as unfortunately they know they have us by the short and curlies, especially those of us that have no choice but to eat gluten free.
It took me a good 15 mins to make a choice but I eventually settled on bacon and peanut butter burger, something I really couldn't resist since I love peanut butter and it sounded like such an odd combo I just had to try it.
My boyfriend went to order and being the good egg he is, he double checked everything for me. First up he checked about the frying situation mentioned on the menu, and they said they could do the gluten free separate so they was no risk of cross contamination and he then checked about the chips, one thing
Chips cooked in their own fryer at Handmade Burger Company, Birmingham
so many places seem to forget about is chips getting contaminated in the oil, in this instance though all was good as the server checked with the manager who said they are cooked in their own fryer.
All the burgers at the handmade burger company are made from scratch and to order, so when you ask for gluten free they will make yours separate with no gluten which we think is great, they could easily have turned and said "no we can't do two different types of burger, so no gluten free sorry" but they haven't, they have made a whole menu suitable for us and take the time to prepare gluten free burgers for us.
The thing I really liked as soon as my burger came was that the bun was wrapped in plastic so it wouldn't be contaminated (you can also have the burgers naked without a bun),it was somewhat a "build your own" burger as all the components were there on the plate but you had to construct them yourself, something I thought was a great idea as it's another step that helps prevent cross contamination.
The bun was lovely and soft and almost like normal bread, the burger lovely and juicy and the topping, despite being an odd combo was so delicious. Oh and the chips were incredible too. We were so full by the time we had finished, when we were asked if we wanted dessert we had no choice but to decline, the waiter laughed when we said we couldn't eat another thing and said "we hear that a lot", which I am sure they they do, the burgers are filling on their own, never mind when you have a side of chips to go with them. However if you did want dessert it looks like the only option they have is ice cream like many other places.
Overall we had a great experience at the handmade burger company and we won't hesitate to visit again, the staff were fabulous and the food and drink were yummy (I can really recommend the milkshakes, the banana ones are amazing, made with fresh banana unlike a lot of places!) and they really know how to deal with Coeliacs. We can't wait to go again.