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Le 28Thiers / Lille, France

…the French love a good burger, much as they don’t like to admit it.

Hey! France! Stop being so complacent!

Bit of a disappointing trip, this one. Lille seems to have suffered a bit from its Eurostar hub status:

The Euro is still walloping us.

Paul seems to have turned into a strange Disneyland / Starbucks hybrid (but the bread still looks OK).

It’s all a bit odd.

Fortunately there is a ray of pink, soggy light at the end of the tunnel and it’s called Le BCBG burger, and it’s available from a strangely outfitted club/bar/restaurant thing in the old town called Le 28Thiers. We stumbled in there with sore feet (too many cobbles in Lille, apparently) after clocking a business luncheoning group wrapping their chops around some rather tasty looking burgers. Certainly not the standard three course prix fixe we were looking for, but they looked good enough to make the decision to stop.

And I’m rather glad to say we did. Foie gras is a tricky beast to wedge into a burger.

It’s rich. It melts. It’s flavour can be lost when it’s not kept simple.

The classically French steak haché traditionally holds its posh, naked head high: sneering at its American counterparts that have been blackened and cloched with plastic cheese. But the French love a good burger, much as they don’t like to admit it, and this was a great find. In fact I’m glad to say this was a truly excellent burger. The patties were cooked only just enough, as you’d expect, and the tremendously generous slab of foie quickly liquified all over everything on the plate in a most satisfying manner.

Needless to say, the cheese-baked brioche was perfect, and somehow managed to encase the bloody contents without incident. Tasty too.

I did need a nap afterwards. The best non-traditional thing in a town that needs a good kick up the cul.

- Simon.

28 rue Thiers - 59000 Lille, France

The BCBG burger
Down the middle...