Reviews

New Burger Spot Lazy Bastard Holds so Much Promise, but the Food is Another Story

May 8, 2015

We haven’t done a negative review in awhile. Maybe we’ve been scared or put off by it, because we gained a bit of a reputation; we were told that we were ripping into places for no reason but for sport. It’s a struggle sometimes, whether we should inform the public or keep opinions to ourselves, and chalk it down to experience or a systematic glitch. But sometimes, there are meals that are a little bit too disheartening, you’ve got no other choice, really, and pray that you won’t get crucified.

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Left: Hamburger, PHP 160. Right: Breakfast Sandwich with pancake, sausage patty, and egg: PHP 140.

This is why we debated so much on whether or not to talk about Lazy Bastard. On one hand, the relatively new restaurant holds so much promise. It has everything going for it: a semi-hidden location, an infinitely cool-looking tiny space complete with neon signage and a chalkboard wall, and a beautiful speakeasy tucked behind it. It is nothing short of awesome. But the food is another story entirely.

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Foreground: Honey Parmesan Dog, PHP 140. Background: Avocadog, PHP 190.

The concept is very much inspired by Crif Dogs in New York, which is also the location of secret bar PDT. Lazy Bastard, is home too to a speakeasy, ABV, which is hidden behind a nondescript door at the front of the establishment. The short order menu is almost the same, too, with an emphasis on hot dogs that are wrapped in bacon then deep-fried. Aside from that, you’ve got a basic list of other greased-up grub: burgers, make-your-own breakfast sandwiches, and a few deep-fried sides. It’s a menu that’s easy to please, with comfort written all over it. And because their inspiration has such an exacting reputation, you’d immediately think that this place should do them justice, or make them even better.

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Left: Sloppy Joe, PHP150. Right: Tater Bombs, PHP 220.

Instead, orders come to you, and while things look a little promising, expectations are quickly let down. Burgers come with flat buns, which sadly take away from the patties as they are cooked to an acceptable medium and are almost on the right side of juicy. Sloppy joes are weird, with meat that has an odd way-too-mushy texture leading to indiscernible taste, rather than robust flavor. Tater tots covered in bacon are on the wrong edge of hedonistic—way too oily and burnt, that one bite releases a little too much grease. Make your own sandwiches don’t fare any better, with sausage patties that don’t have the herbaceousness you’d expect. The hotdogs are definitely much better, but only marginally. The bread is still slightly depressing, but the dogs themselves snap well, and the honey parmesan version was surprisingly exciting, after a meal that didn’t quite live up to the promise.

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The thing about Lazy Bastard is it could be so much more. Aesthetically, it has all the makings of a place that could build up quite the cult following. It could offer the best hotdogs in Manila, the most irreverent burgers in town, and deliver food with the experience that it promises. At the moment, it lives up to its moniker. A great shame, because ABV is one of the best bars in Manila at the moment, a shining spot and well-appointed, well-executed addition to our growing small bar scene. Lazy Bastard needs to meet its standard.

Have you tried Lazy Bastard? What were your thoughts about it? Tell us with a comment below.

This review was conducted solely by the author, who did not accept any form of cash advertising, invitation, sponsorship or payment. It was paid for by the author or Pepper.ph, and the views represented are purely the writer’s own. It is based on several anonymous visits to the restaurant.

Lazy Bastard

Address: Basement Floor, 22 Jupiter St. corner Galaxy St., Bel-Air, Makati
Follow On: Facebook / Instagram

13 comments in this post SHOW

13 responses to “New Burger Spot Lazy Bastard Holds so Much Promise, but the Food is Another Story”

  1. Paul says:

    Its good to see a critical review from my perspective. My only suggestion is this line doesn’t make much sense:

    “The hotdogs are much better, but only marginally”

  2. Mike says:

    Why is it that when an unfavorable review is written, the author becomes incognito and if its a raving one, the name and pic is proudly displayed! Don’t be scared to reveal yourself and man up to what you write!

    • Mikka Wee says:

      Hi Mike, thanks for your comment! 🙂 It’s not that the author wanted to hide behind the curtain, but the review above was produced by a bunch of our writers who have been to and have tried Lazy Bastard. As the byline suggests, this is a collaborative piece, and since it is a combination of several different opinions, we wanted to balance them out in this article. Hope this clarifies!

  3. Elena says:

    Not a paid review for a change. Well done.

  4. Christian says:

    I respect a food critic for writing a negative review. They’re usually afraid to offend and therefore will not write negative reviews. However, I have to disagree with this review.

    I work nearby and have been to Lazy Bastard several times. Those bacon wrapped deep fried hotdogs are so wrong, yet so right in so many ways. The burgers are cooked perfectly, nice and juicy. The burgers are more about the patty, and less about all the fancy toppings, the way a good burger should be. And the breakfast sandwiches are nothing but pure indulgence!

    It’s usually pretty busy when I go with my office mates after work. I have to assume the reviewers just didn’t get the place. To each his anonymous own, I guess. But we definitely love Lazy Bastard!

    • jbabs7 says:

      I think it’s not that the reviewers didn’t get the place, but they made the comparison with Crif Dogs in mind (a joint known for high standard comfort food) since it’s obvious LB got their inspiration from them.

  5. Sylvia Changco says:

    Seriously?! Where did your taste buds run off to? Lazy Bastard’s one of the burger joints in town for me!

  6. Sylvia Changco says:

    Seriously?! Where did your taste buds run off to? Lazy Bastard’s one of the best burger joints in town right now. I’ve been going back and forth because that medium-rare, brilliantly seasoned, overly juicy patty is divine!

    • jbabs7 says:

      The author said that the patty was good (“the patties as they are cooked to an acceptable medium and are almost on the right side of juicy”)—it’s just that the buns were a letdown.

  7. Spanx! says:

    I’ll try their burgers… maybe a head-to-head match-up with Sweet X a block away :))

    Fair and Constructive review, Pepper.ph Team ~ keep ’em coming!!!

    My main beef ~ pardon the bad pun~ is the too obvious nod to
    Crif Dogs; it could have been more subtle, since so many
    of us have seen it featured on many Food Network
    and Travel Channel food shows.

    (Feed the Beast : ))

  8. margauxie says:

    You’re known for not being biased with your reviews… please keep them coming! 🙂

  9. Tere Tenorio says:

    The burgers and hotdogs must be so bad they’re opening a second branch at UP Town Center. :p

  10. Iggy says:

    The word perfect is very subjective so when som dude sayz “perfectly done” … I know its wrong. My idea of a perfect hotdog is grilled and burnt all over. Takers?

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