The UK’s National Burger Award winner, Libertine, is now available nationwide for the very first time. The Warwickshire-based independent restaurant group are taking their cult American-style burgers far and wide with delivery of their brand-new DIY kits across the UK.
The limited-edition kits champion their top-selling burgers - including their No. 007 trademark patties with house chilli and chimichurri and their remake of California’s famed In-N-Out burger. Libertine’s new DIY kits remain true to their ethos – pocket friendly, without sacrificing on quality – priced at £25 a box and serving four.
It’s the details that dazzle from start to finish. Boxes are beautifully branded and carefully packaged, so ingredients arrive chilled. And they even put four sheets of greasproof paper inside, so that you can wrap your patty and serve it as though it were being ordered from your favourite burger bar. While the standard of box meals has improved dramatically during lockdown, Libertine are out in front, offering branded cheese slices, house sauces and even a blend of salt and pepper.
Libertine started from small beginnings, as a decked-out street food van in 2017. It quickly built a name for itself touring the best street food markets and events across the Midlands, including Birmingham’s Digbeth Dining Club. Founder Charles Harris and his team found themselves working round the clock to cater to demand and soon set up a flagship restaurant in Leamington Spa. A second bricks and mortar site quickly followed in Rugby. On Libertine’s success, and step to nationwide delivery Charles Harris says: “While we might be a little late to the party, we’ve taken the time to perfect our process and make sure this DIY kit is as good as we want it to be, and nothing less! It’s crazy to think that Libertine, which started as my little passion project, has grown into something that we are now sharing with people across the country, and in a relatively short time. I’m very proud of us all today.”
Libertine-branded kits include everything to make their most popular, classic: 150g beef patties, Libertine house spice blend, house pickles and home cured streaky bacon, American cheese and of course bottles of Ketchup and Frenchie’s mustard. It’s their classic for a reason. Vegan options including their No. 111 trademark Beyond Meat buns will be available in the coming weeks.
The Libertine kit is designed to be pocket friendly, without sacrificing on quality. Beef is sourced from Warwickshire’s own award-winning butchers Aubery Allen. House patties are made using Aberdeenshire 50% chuck, 20% flank and 30% brisket cuts, dry-aged or a minimum of 28 days and ground twice just before being packed up. Boxed with Libertine greaseproof paper, diners can put together a proper American-style burger from the comfort of their own home.
Simple instructions tell you everything you need to know, from how to cook the patties perfectly, to how to cloche your burger, Libertine style, and ensure you get that all-important melted cheese middle. Order extras like house sides, sauces, and canned wines from ‘Nice’ winery (Nice Pale Rose or Nice Malbec) and their Wales-based brewery partner: Tiny Rebel.
The patty, of course, is where all the action is and the blend of Aubrey Allen beef makes all the difference. Using cuts that mix great flavour and great texture with plenty of all-important fat, it is bursting with flavour. After a hot scorch to caramelise the outside, the burger benefited from a short rest before being popped into the bun. There it was added to perfectly acidulated pickles, squirts of tomato ketchup and mustard and fabulously smoky bacon that had been pre-cooked and just required a quick warm in the oven. The buns were great, beautifully topped with sesame seeds and deliciously tender.
The fast food market is a tough one to crack. After all, if you can buy a packet of four half-decent burgers from your local supermarket for considerably less, why spend £25 on a burger box? The answer is simple: quality. Libertine smash their competitors out of the park. The pattys are of a quality that you won’t find in a supermarket, deli nor even a specialist butcher. They are, in a word, better. The ease with which it’s possible to assemble the whole shebang, with plenty of salt and pepper for seasoning, and extra slices of fast-melting American cheese, takes away any of the inconvenience of buying a range of ingredients. The hard work is done. Libertine’s box is all about fun in the kitchen using an easy-to-assemble-and-cook ingredient box before feasting like Elvis on a fabulously calorific, couldn’t-care-less-about-the-diet indulge-fest.
There are cool burger houses across the region, with a number in Birmingham comparing favourably against the best in the UK. Libertine has their number – which is perhaps no surprise given their status as national champion. And at £25 to feed a family of four, it’s decent enough value.
The eat-at-home box is a phenomenon that began with high end restaurants offering people the chance to enjoy fine dining at home. The fact that Libertine has muscled in on that market and delivered where others don’t cut the mustard says everything. Bright packaging, swift delivery, great customer service, stunning ingredients, simple instructions and an end product that knocks the spots off anything that’s available from anywhere beyond, well, Libertine’s own bricks-and-mortar restaurant make it the ultimate mid-week treat or weekend feast.
Eating in has become the new eating out and with Libertine taking the pretence and fussiness out of the whole experience, it’s never been more fun. When restaurants gradually re-open, we can but hope that some of the best delivery services will remain. Because at £25 Libertine delivers two things with aplomb: the first is taste and the second is fun.