On Sunday 9th of November 2014, after a long wait by many (myself included) Burger King finally opened in India to much fanfare and brought with it just the hint of royalty…a red carpet for all the guests at the launch.
Yes, that’s right, a red carpet for all the customers on their first day was a brilliant move on their part as it gave a sense of exclusivity and we all know that Delhites are all about being exclusive.
Having had the good luck of tasting Burger King through the years, I knew what was in store. And to be honest, they were some of the yummiest and most delicious burgers I ever had the pleasure of tasting.
On learning that Burger King was opening here in India, my joy knew no bounds. I had always mourned the fact that Burger King was not available to us all in India and well, here they came bringing with them all of their most delicious treats, tweaked just a little to suit Indian standards.
Alright a quick recap for anyone who has no idea what I’m talking about. Burger King is one of the most popular burger franchises with branches all over the world. Their worldwide famous burger called the ‘Whooper’ is supposedly the greatest and most unique burger and Burger King itself has declared themselves as ‘Home of the Whooper’ but for a longest time they had evaded India, but now with their first ever branch in India opening at the grand Select City Walk Mall in Saket, they have started their intense and power packed operation of opening 10-12 branches in Delhi and then moving on to the whole of India.
For the grand opening the Burger King representatives had also collaborated with eBay the on-line shopping giant and offered for the first time and for a limited period from 3rd November till 5th November for all the ‘Whooper’ lovers to pre-order their choice of chicken, mutton or vegetarian ‘Whooper’ burgers. All this was available at a very special promotional price of Rs. 128 all inclusive of taxes.
Imagine now food can be pre-ordered by the power of the almighty internet. And according to staticstics eBay has pre-booked around 540 chicken, 380 mutton and 240 vegetarian ‘Whoopers’ and they are sold. That’s an awful lot of burgers to be sold!
Now on to the actual event, although the timing on the pamphlet for the opening was 12p.m., they had already opened the gates at 11 a.m. due to the massive crowd collecting outside, which you can witness from the picture below.
Credits: Ankush Goel and Zomato
Credits: ETizen 101 and Zomato
Yup, that’s right guys. It was a pretty long queue but as they say about all good things, the wait was so worth it.
The wait although to be honest, was not much and in just 20-25 minutes we were already inside. But before that, in a great and time saving maneuver the Burger King employees handed out these tick sheets with the names of the dishes and a menu to choose from. All you had to do was take your pick of burgers, chicken, fries, shakes and drinks and mark your choices in the tick sheet and give them to the employees whenever they pass you by. They will have your order ready by the time you reach the front.
I found that to be pretty impressive and smart move as it saved the time of both the employees at the cash register and us foodies, as we could take the time while waiting to decide from the multitude of choices and then have it ready for us by time our turn came.
They also gave out these paper crowns that you could fit around your head and that along with the red carpet certainly gave it a true royal feel.
It was pretty nice.
Credits: Ankush Goel and Zomato
Yes, so fortunately I and my friend found a place to sit quickly, at least by the standards of the line and as we had already decided our menu,
- Crispy Veg
- Veg Chilli Cheese
- Chicken Tandoori Grill(combo)
- Ice Bolt
We ordered everything quickly and surprisingly we didn’t have to wait long there too. And miraculously, we even found a table for two and did not have to stand around awkwardly holding our trays in our hands.
Now for the food, I ordered for myself a Chicken Tandoori Grill Combo, although I am disappointed that they did not have their Fish burger which I had the absolute pleasure of having in both the London and Hong Kong branches. So on that half, they did disappoint me as they didn’t have a few of their regular ones in the Indian menu, but I suppose they will either release it later on or maybe its not meant to be. (
Anyways, the grilled burger that I did have was delicious in its own way.
The burger was very simply prepared with two slices of soft burger bread and lathered with some delicious and strong mint sauce and some onion rings. But the actual perfection was the big piece of perfectly grilled chicken. The chicken was not in the uniform shape of a patty, it was a misshapen large piece of chicken grilled to perfection. Not burnt, not left raw. The inside was a healthy white and the outside had that beautiful crispiness and just a hint of smokiness that we all love in a nice grilled chicken. My mouth is watering just thinking about it again. But yes, on that note, they did not disappoint, it was a very worth my money type of burger, with no fancy decorations to it and yet being just scrumptious.
My friend also enjoyed her vegetarian burger although she did say that it was pretty similar to the McDonalds one. And I suppose she might not be wrong, after all how many different ways are there for a burger to be prepared.
While standing in the queue we got to talking to a few people and although some were genuine fans, they either had had it while travelling or they had heard about it from some relative or friend of theirs. There were also some who had heard so much about this ‘Burger King’ that they thought to go and see what the fuss was about.
Now there was another couple that we encountered. Seeing as it was a busy time there were a lot of people milling around our table looking to grab it as soon as we gave even a hint of leaving. But one such couple who asked us if we were vacating the table or not were talking to us and the man was reminiscing about how people had a similiar reaction when McDonalds had opened some two decades ago.
Yeah….I agreed with him. Times have not changed much yet so much in other matters.
The tight quarters let us overhear few people’s reactions to their food. While some were apparently enjoying their food a little too much, assuming by their moans, there were some who were lamenting that they would not be able to try the true ‘Whooper’ as beef is not allowed in North Indian regions. Also some were not really impressed by Burger King wondering that it was not that different from some of the other burger chains already available in India.
Now…coming on to the interiors of the place, I can’t say much about it. In honesty the interiors are not that much different from McDonalds or KFC. The same table and chairs the same counter. But…then again I was not really expecting some museum or beautiful interiors too. So…very generic that way.
Yes, maybe Burger King is not that different in looks from the other burger places, but whats that saying of not judging a book by its cover.
Well, that applies here very well. You can only decide your opinion on it once you’ve had a burger from Burger King. And to be fair its not that expensive. I suppose it is a little more than McDonalds. But…its still a little new, I’m sure in some time they will reduce prices on their own.
So, even if just out of curiosity, but do give it a try. Because you never know, unless you try it.