The race to become Saigon’s next top burger joint intensifies with a new contender in town. By Khoi Pham. Photos by Vinh Dao.
Everyone knows how to make a burger: toast some buns, grill some meat, slap on a few greens and there you have it; it’s not take rocket science. Making delicious burgers, however, is not an easy feat, if whatever they are serving at KFC and McDonald’s is any indication. And it seems the chefs behind Relish & Sons have gotten it down to an art with their range of unique burger creations.
Opened in March, the restaurant’s arrival only adds to the already eclectic mix of cuisines currently on Dong Du’s list of offerings. On the ground floor, customers are greeted by a homey atmosphere with wooden tables, white painted brick walls, a chalkboard of daily specials and an impressive collection of neatly arranged butcher knives on the wall.
Burgers are the stars of the show in Relish & Sons, with six varieties, all composed of different but expertly combined ingredients. The Classic (VND 160,000) is my new go-to remedy for beef cravings, with layers of juicy grilled beef, gherkin, lettuce, mustard and bourbon onion relish that will melt in your mouth. The New Porker (VND 150,000) – consisting of sticky pulled pork, apple slaw, pineapple and chili chutney – is also worth a try, judging by the way my friend was humming through hers. If you’re feeling like a full meal, the All Day Combo (VND 190,000) gets you any burger with a side of chips or onion rings and a soft drink or tap beer.
The menu also offers a variety of dishes for all manner of dining: start your day the English way with the muffin, bacon, egg and spinach (VND 110,000); share a quick bite with your friends munching on cheesy fries topped with bacon and beans (VND 85,000); or grab a Bulgur salad (VND 100,000), a refreshing mix of apples, parsley, cucumber, tomato and chickpeas.
To be honest, I’m not really a burger person, having become so used to Saigon’s abundant offerings of rice and noodle-based dishes. However, if I have to pick a place that has the power to potentially convert me, I’ll go with Relish & Sons, not only because their burgers are delicious, but also because of the amount of thought and consideration that went into creating them. Prices are a bit on the steep side but sometimes good food is worth it. Besides, any restaurant that can turn dangerous cutlery into tasteful decoration deserves a chance; it makes you wonder what they might do with fresh, beautiful ingredients.