This time out we took a trip to Bill’s in Bluewater. I can’t count the number of times we have looked at the menu and then ended up somewhere else, so finally it was time to give it a try. Of course we just had to go for the halloumi burger, which is listed on the menu as follows:
HALLOUMI BURGER V Tomato hummus, sweet chilli sauce, roasted red peppers, pea shoots, red onion, garlic lemon mayo, fries — 10.75
It was served open, which I’m never usually a fan of – but in this case there were a lot of different things going on, and it does fill up the plate to make it look like you have more to eat when it first comes. When it was put together it was quite messy to eat thanks to the sauce and the salad, but that just made it more interesting to try and eat.
I also started with a milkshake which was just to die for. Of all the American trends to have come over in our restaurants – this is definitely my favourite.
The burger had a lovely sweet chilli dressing that was just divine. I’ve always found sweet chilli to be the perfect accompaniment to halloumi. The cheese itself was not too big or chunky, as we’ve seen elsewhere, but was rather the perfect size for a bite. The rocket added great texture and tang – this is a trio which is just meant to be together.
There was a houmous lining to the bun which was great, with chunks of chickpeas providing even more texture. It’s really important that, when the “burger” is just halloumi, the dressing works well – and in this case, it does.
The bun was also a pleasant surprise. Rather than a carbon copy of all of the other brioche buns being served in UK restaurants right now, it was actually a little different. It was brioche still, but quite firm instead of the soft and crumbly varieties you normally end up with.
Finally, the sides: the fries were just as you might expect, nothing more, nothing less. The dip was quite interesting, but ultimately a bit too thin. I chose to finish off with a chocolate fondant, which was just amazing. There’s something magical about the hot chocolate lava pouring out and meeting cold vanilla ice cream. It can’t be beaten, especially not if you are looking to eat something so filling and so sweet that you feel sick for hours afterwards.
A final thought on the pricing: there’s the old discretionary 10% added to the bill trick played here. I’m never a fan of this, and Bill’s prices are very high compared to other brands. It’s not something that makes me happy at the end of the meal.