Some people say Southampton has too many burger restaurants. I disagree, obviously.
The latest burger joint to open in Southampton is Vospers, over in Centenary Quay (aka Woolston Waterside).
Vospers is run by the same team that set up the Mettricks chain of coffee houses in the city. Most Sotonians will know that it’s named after Vosper Thornycroft, a company that built and maintained ships on this site until 2003.
The Vospers restaurant sits near Mettricks’ new Woolston cafe. Next door is Supermarine, another restaurant from the Mettricks stable that specialises in wood-fired pizza.
We headed to Vospers last week for bite to eat. How did it fare in my search for Hampshire’s best burger? Let’s see.
About this burger
- Date visited: 10 August 2017
- Name on menu: “The 1966” (plus optional side of fries)
- Price: £10.50 (£8.00 for the burger and £2.50 for the fries)
How this burger scored
Patty – 9/10
Stunning. Cooked rare and nicely seasoned with an airy texture.
Vospers uses meat from local butcher. It was juicy and sweet.
(The chef can cook your burger well done, if you prefer.)
Chips – 9/10
Tasty and crispy and not greasy. A solid example of how to do chips right.
Bun – 6/10
I wasn’t keen on the texture of the bun or the chia seeds in it.
Still, it didn’t taste too bad and it held everything together well, despite the efforts of the beer-soaked onions (see below).
Toppings – 7/10
I loved the creamy, smoked cheese and mouth-watering maple-cured bacon, which was nice and crispy.
The barbecue ketchup did the job too.
My only qualm with the toppings was the beer-soaked onions – they made the bottom layer of bread a bit soggy. Normal sautéed onions would have done the job perfectly, I reckon.
Ambiance – 8/10
For a modern, purpose-built restaurant, Vospers is a lovely space and nothing like the cliched burger joint.
It’s light, roomy and airy with a mix of contemporary industrial fitting and the odd bit of an art deco flavour.
All around there are reminders of the site’s former guise, including loads of pictures of ships and boats from days gone by.
Drinks selection and quality – 7/10
There’s a varied selection of cask, keg and bottled beers at Vospers. I had a half of Thwaites “Wainwright” golden ale (4.1%), which was the only cask ale on offer (there are two lines). It’s not a great beer, to be honest. But it was in good condition. So, you can trust Vospers to serve a good pint.
There were also several keg lines of Shipyard, a US beer sold in the UK by Marston’s brewery (which owns the Thwaites brand too).
Bottles and cans were available from some of the UK’s bigger ‘craft’ brewers, plus a couple of foreign beers too.
I’d liked to have seen a few more beers from Hampshire’s 30-odd breweries.
Oh, there’s a great cocktail and mocktail menu too.
Condiments – 5/5
We had some extra barbecue sauce, as well as good quality ketchup, mayo and English mustard.
Presentation – 4/5
No nonsense presentation, and on a plate too.
Service – 4/5
Staff are friendly, knowledgeable and efficient. We had a nice chat with a couple of the staff. But, they would have quite happily left us to it if we’d have wanted.
Staff missed the opportunity to keep my beer topped up though!
Value for money – 5/5
£10.50 for a filling burger in nice surroundings ain’t too shabby.
Penalties – 0
Not a metal pail or chopping board in sight.
A great showing from Vospers only let down by the bun, soggy onions and lack of local beer.
Still, I highly recommend you check it out.
Info: Vospers is at 1 Centenary Plaza, Woolston Waterside, Southampton, SO19 9UL. Call 02381 845911. Open from 12pm but closed Mondays and Tuesdays.