As a girl growing up in the Home Counties in the 80s, my memories of fast food are more about a blackened sausage in a finger roll at the school fete; followed by a fairy cake topped with water icing and hundreds and thousands and all washed down with a warm Rola Cola. Maybe's there's a gap in the market?
On this particularly frigid February afternoon it was comfort I was seeking. It had started as a Very Bad Day, and while the vast amounts of wine we had drunk over a lovely lunch at the nearby Vinoteca had helped, I still craved something simple and satisfying to soak up all the excesses of the afternoon. After enduring the hell that is Selfridges luggage department, the Ewing agreed we could walk the few blocks to Tommis, the most Northerly point of Marylebone's Burgmuda Triangle, for a pit stop.
The whole look is finished with a spattering twinkling fairy lights strung across the windows and ceiling, that just manages to successfully straddle the line between knowingly artful and twee.
Above the drinks cabinet you will also find one of my very favourite things, seldom seen on these shores, a condiment and pickle bar. Here you can stock up 'til your hearts content on mayo, mustard, sliced cukes, horseradish sauce, tomato relish, seasoning salt and vinegar (very British). There's even some little pots with lids available for takeout. A nice touch that really lets you have things Your Way (to quote another famous burger chain).
In this confusing world where everything seems to be about double patties smothered with toppings so sloppy that cutlery (or a straw) seems the only way to take your dinner down, this was a simple revelation. There were no bun crumbling issues, or fillings that turned to soup and ran down your sleeves; the patty was the right size for the bread and the toppings didn't overwhelm the meat. In short it was everything the Ewing wanted, and comforting, too.
The saving grace was the bearnaise sauce, the nectar of my gods and the perfect dip for both the burger and the excellent, Mcdonalds-esque, hot and crunchy fries.