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Burger Week: BUNS

Exberliner continues on the burger beat. Day three of our Burger Week finds a taste of France in an unexpected place – an ex-army van parked in Friedrichshain's RAW complex. Are the distinctly continental offerings from BUNS merveilleux or mauvais?

Image for Burger Week: BUNS
Photo by Ryan O’Shea.

The French/Canadian-run BUNS, one of Berlin’s newest take-out-in-a-truck outfits, offers French-flavoured fare that proves itself more gourmet than street grub. Bon appetit!

Hungry for more? Don’t miss day one and day two of Exberliner’s burger week! 

The latest Berliners to jump on the food truck bandwagon are Mathilde Bayle and Pablo Siranossian, the southern French/Canadian duo behind BUNS. You’ll find them in a bright yellow GMC van parked at Urban Spree. The truck was brought to Berlin by the US military back when Tempelhof was still used as a base. It once fed the “US boys”; now it feeds international partiers. But this isn’t any old late-night disco snack-trailer.

No, this is more like slow food on wheels. The ingredients are handpicked according to season and as high-quality as you can get: bread from Soluna in Kreuzberg, cheeses from P’Berg deli La Käserie, free-range Neuland meat from Fleischerei Kluge.

At €6, their cheeseburger is worth every penny. Made from a special mix of quality beef with enough fat for a juicy yet not greasy burger, the patty is generously sized and served… medium rare! Resting on home-made mayo, it’s topped with their take on BBQ sauce: a vinegary caramel-based tomato concoction spruced up by spices from garlic to chilli with hints of fennel.

The other gourmet innovation is the Laguiole, a raw, unpasteurised mountain cheese made from the milk of cows living on the Aubrac plateau in the south of France, only milked between May and October at altitudes higher than 800m! All this luxury is sandwiched between two Soluna buns grilled in the oven till brown and crispy. Add bacon for extra natural smoky flavour. Vegetarians will enjoy the Grilled Cheese Au Fer (€5) – as “foodie” as Imbiss grub is gonna get. Savour the pungent, dripping Morbier cheese on deliciously soft, mild pain au lait ironed (literally, with an old-fashioned iron) till light brown, served with caramelised onions and gherkins on top. Herbi- and carnivores will reconcile their differences over the home fries (unpeeled, hand-cut, oven-baked with roasted garlic and rosemary) or the dessert: scrumptious éclairs with a chocolate-caramel filling, the real French deal.

BUNS doesn’t try too hard to reinvent the burger wheel with bombastic fusion of flavours. Instead, it relies on the discerning hand choosing the right ingredients. Maybe that’s because it’s food cooked by a woman – the result feels comforting and homely. Only open since early June, Mathilde and Pablo are promising a “fish bun’’, gazpacho and a marinated veg sandwich for high summer. We can’t wait!

Originally published in Issue #118, July/August 2013.