Review: Black Tap JBR
There’s a reason Black Tap is always mentioned when talking about the best burgers around. The popular Jumeirah Al Naseem joint has been dishing up exceptional gourmet burgers, with creative toppings, for the past few years and word of the New York franchise has spread far and wide across the emirate.
Such is the popularity, a second, bigger and more vibrant, Black Tap opened earlier this year at Rixos Premium Hotel JBR. It’s got that same grungy/cool aesthetic with graffiti and bespoke artwork across the walls that’s capable of whisking you away to the Manhattan original and the eclectic vibe that comes with it.
There’s a fully stocked bar with all manner of craft hops and mixed beverages on offer, plus a special station where the signature shakes are put together (more on these later). Black Tap JBR even transforms into a party spot with a DJ taking to the decks so you can work off your meal with some silky dance moves.
Of course, we’re here for the handcrafted burgers and pluck out The Mexico City and The Texan from a packed menu of equally tasty sounding creations.
The Mexico City is built with a prime beef patty and topped with Latin flavours such as pickled jalapeños, chipotle mayo and a jack cheese that comes together in a soft brioche bun superbly. And, as you expect from The Texan’s namesake state, this one digs deep into barbecue territory with crispy onions, sharp cheddar and smoky BBQ sauce combo.
Black Tap burgers aren’t enormous, in fact they’re a little smaller than we were expecting. However, what they lack in size they make up for in perfectly balanced ingredients - each flavour complimenting the next and pulling together expertly. Every mouthful is both a joyous moment filled with “ooohs and aaahs” and the sad realisation that the burger will soon be gone. Believe the hype, people, Black Tap burgers are well ahead of the game.
And so to those shakes we talked about. We order Oreo, and peanut butter laced concoctions and immediately see why folk in New York used to queue five (FIVE!) hours to buy one. Not content with just making them taste great, they’re also decorated with a number of Instagrammable bits. M&M encrusted rims, pretzel rods and huge Oreo biscuits jutting out all over the place, they taste as good as they look.
Sure, the burger prices are a little higher than your average takeaway fare, but then, well, these aren’t your average burgers and that’s why Black Tap remains the talk of the town.
Where: Rixos Premium, The Walk, JBR
Contact: +971 4 399 9076, website