Annie’s Burger Shack, Nottingham

If you ask anyone where the best burger in Nottingham is, 99% of the time you will get told ‘go to Annie’s’ (and the other 1% are just wrong).

Hailing from Rhode Island originally, Annie brings the taste of America to the rainy streets of Nottingham. Originally based within a local pub, her reputation grew to the point that she had to eventually expand into her own venue – and am I glad she did!

The first thing you notice when you walk into the ‘new Annie’s’ is vast bar, with its wide range of beers on tap. Annie admits she is a bit of a beer fan herself, so you are always guaranteed a good selection of both locally brewed beers (such as Blue Monkey) and wider-ranging breweries. If you’re not sure what to go for, just ask the bar staff who always seem happy to make suggestions. For those of you who prefer a glass of wine over a pint, make sure you try Annie’s very own selection – she has a white, red and rose. Not only do they taste good but they come with her very own personalised labels.

One of the biggest problems at Annie’s (according to Trip Advisor) is that the constant levels of demand can lead to long delays and poor service. Luckily, we saw none of that when we visited last Friday – although this may have been due to the fact we went quite early in the evening before the rush. Our waiter was friendly and enthusiastic, and managed to put up with our constant indecisions over the menu without losing his smile. Making reservations can be a bit of an issue, but they are supposed to be updating their website to combat this.

Having spent about 30minutes agonising over the menu (seriously, there are a lot of great burger options on there!) I finally settled on the monthly special ‘The Hoisin’. This is burger topped with a Chinese pancake, grilled duck breast strips and a hoisin/orange sauce, on a bed of crispy seaweed and finished with homemade candied citrus peels and curly spring onion. It’s not cheap at £12.90, but it is definitely worth it if you are after a bit of a treat.

As you can see from the picture below, presentation is another strong point. Believe it or not but there is actually a burger under that pancake! The burger was cooked a perfect medium rare (if you don’t like your burger pink make sure to tell them when you order) and the duck was crispy. I had worried that the sauce may be too sweet, but the citrus peel gave it a really tantalising freshness that I wasn’t expecting. Just make sure you have plenty of napkins as the sauce WILL go everywhere when you try to eat it – a knife and fork is not cheating when your dignity is at stake!

Sadly, this burger will only be there until the end of January but there are plenty of other interesting combinations to entice you in. Personal favourites include ‘The Elvis’ (peanut butter and jam), ‘The Deathray’ (hot chilli sauce topped with a whole scotch bonnet) and ‘The Delta’ (Mississippi burger sauce, jalapenos and onion rings).

Annie’s have just celebrated their one year anniversary in the new venue, and to celebrate they are running a ‘suggest a burger’ competition. So if you have the perfect burger combination make sure you pop in and submit your entry before it’s too late – the winner will get their burger featured on the menu. They aren’t accepting entries online so you will have to pop in, but that just gives you a perfect excuse to stop for a beer!

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