BurgerUp is the latest F&B concept to join the recent burst of eateries that have opened up in the Sembawang/Yishun neighbourhood after several cafes and ice-cream parlours had opened in the area.
Taking over the former spot of Wendy’s, BurgerUp sits directly beside yet another homegrown fast-food name; one albeit with more history and had made its name in the Fried Chicken business; Arnold’s Fried Chicken. Much of the furnishings seemed to be reused from Wendy’s somehow, and the decor seems a bit haphazard somehow with weirdly placed seating and seemed barren in a few places. One thing unique about BurgerUp is its self-service ordering system, where one would use an automated machine to place orders and make payment at the collection counter while sides and drinks are served, with the burger being prepared just at the same time. Menu items include DIY burgers where one is able to choose a combination that fancies them, or choose from a few pre-determined flavours as well as rice sets and a variety of side dishes. Each set comes with a side and a soft drink.
Two of us ordered the Breaded Mushrooms. Breaded Mushrooms is one dish that’s pretty hard to get wrong; we loved the succulent and juicy mushrooms but the batter seemed a tad too light. We would have preferred a thicker coating of bread crumbs so that it would bring more crunch for the mushrooms, besides the fact that some pieces seemed a tad more floury than the rest. Consistency issues perhaps?
The Crispy Winglets were not really better off either; it seemed pretty meatless, dry and aired out for a bit too long. Not to mention it was slightly on the bland side?
(Grilled Chicken Rice)
Since the rest of my dining partners decided on the burgers, I decided to take on the Rice Set. Went for the Grilled Chicken Rice and it comes with a Grilled Chicken Patty with few pieces of lettuces and a slice of tomato. It was not too bad, honestly, but at $10.35 with the Breaded Mushrooms and a regular cup of Iced Lemon Tea I felt it seemed a tad overpriced. I quite liked how the rice tasted fragrant from what seemed to be garlic, and there were a few bits here and there that were crisp to bite. Chicken was tender, and had a nice char-grilled flavour to it but I quite disliked how there was mayo over the original sauce, where the mayo just seemed a tad dominating in flavour somehow.
(Turkey Bacon Burger)
The Turkey Bacon burger was actually one of the suggested DIY combinations that was recommended by them, printed on a paper that was stuck to all the ordering machines. Again it was not too bad; beef seemed less coarse and more tender than the commercial fast-food joints, but the Turkey Bacon was stiff and dry. The burger bun was also a tad uninspiring, while the whole burger seemed to taste of mostly BBQ sauce. Not particularly bad tasting, but there was just nothing to mention either.
My dining partner’s Fish Burger felt like an in between of a coffeeshop western stall burger and a Fillet-O-Fish; a real pricey one though. It was pretty normal and average at its best.
BurgerUp seems to be trying to introduce a new concept to fast-food dining, but there’s some things that seems to need a fix. For a start, a DIY Burger system is a great deal; it encourages patrons to come up with a burger which condiments they would really like, but it seems weird that the DIY Burger system comes with suggested combinations to combine together which seems more practical to integrate those options into the usual menu. The self-ordering system also seems problematic; order was placed, then customer pays for meal and collects sides and drinks. There was no display (not that we have noticed) nor buzzer system that notifies the customer about the burger being ready, and the poor counter staff was shouting away for people to collect orders in a space so huge the staff are having a hard time and the customer has to do a double-job to collect their food. Probably they should look into how their operations can be more efficient. Food is also pretty underwhelming somehow; I am pretty sure I would not be back especially when they are neighbours with a name so much stronger in the business. Let’s hope they will do better in the future …
51 Yishun Central 1
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/BurgerUp/1480849292135625