Carol Godsmark reviews: 6oz Burgers, Southsea

6 Oz Burgers, 46 Osborne Road, Southsea
6 Oz Burgers, 46 Osborne Road, Southsea

SHORT STORY FOR THE WEEKEND: Red Noir by Richard Salsbury

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In Quentin Tarantino’s 1994 film Pulp Fiction, two hitmen, Vincent (John Travolta) and Jules (Samuel L Jackson), discuss how Europeans view America’s national dish, the hamburger.

Vincent: You can walk into a movie theater in Amsterdam and buy a beer. And I don’t mean just like in no paper cup; I’m talking about a glass of beer. And in Paris, you can buy a beer at McDonald’s. And you know what they call a Quarter Pounder with Cheese in Paris?

Jules: They don’t call it a Quarter Pounder with Cheese?

Vincent: Nah, man, they got the metric system. They wouldn’t know what a Quarter Pounder is.

Jules: What do they call it?

Vincent: They call it a ‘Royale with Cheese’.

Jules: What do they call a Big Mac?

Vincent: A Big Mac’s a Big Mac, but they call it ‘Le Big Mac’.

Jules: ‘Le Big Mac’. What do they call a Whopper?

Vincent: I don’t know, I didn’t go in a Burger King.

Twenty or so years ago in Britain it was mostly Wimpy. The 500th golden arches variety opened here the year the film came out.

Vincent and Jules would not find much to fault at 6oz Burgers. Simplicity’s the key with Classic, Chilli, Chicken, House and Veggie, although they might have choked on the veggie or chicken options.

They might have questioned a brioche bun too (‘them Limeys sell out to France?’). But American boxes are ticked with lettuce, gherkins, sweet pickle, cheese, chilli, skinny fries and coleslaw. They might have issues with courgette or sweet potato fries. Sliders and a few specials are part of the small menu, as are salads. Meat comes from Buckwells down the street. There are craft beers too, one from New Hampshire’s Portsmouth. Prices are from £4.50.

The décor is not trad American. They’ve gone for the hipster look with wood flooring, distressed wood panelling and a mishmash of chairs. Vast hanging lights add pizzazz.

Service is sweet and unpolished, refreshingly non-corporate.

My Classic was ace. Perfectly-cooked pink, juicy, thick meat inside an excellent bun with lettuce and plentiful gherkins. Home-made coleslaw shows up the commercial variety – chunky, full of roughly-chopped cabbage, apple and carrot. Sublime stuff. The courgette fries disappointed, all batter and no taste of the vegetable.

An excellent Malbec came in a terrific glass bowl.

There might be a brownie for afters, but you’ve come for the burger, this fine rendition satisfying the grouchiest American hitman.

Go to 6 Oz and give the chains (1,200 UK McDonald’s) a miss. And worth the £18.15 for burger, sides and wine (£5.40). And ya get beer, like Paree.

ESSENTIALS

6 Oz Burgers, 46 Osborne Road, Southsea, PO5 3LT (023) 9307 9957

MON/TUES: 17:30-21:00; WED–FRI: 12:00-15:00 & 17:30-21:00; SAT: 12:00-22:00. SUN: 12:00-21:00.

Food: ****

Service: ****

Atmosphere: ****

Disabled access: fine, space for wheelchairs.

How to get there: the restaurant is on the right hand side going east on Osborne Road (parallel to Clarence Parade, where there’s parking).