Thursday, 15 November 2012

East Side Burgers

For a long time, vegetarian options in Paris were the same as vegetarian options in 1970s Britain. Over the past couple of years, that's changed a lot. The move away from spirulina-walnut roasts and undressed side salads is continued by the newest arrival, East Side Burgers. This very modern place opened up in October, as Paris' only vegetarian burger joint. I finally managed to try it out yesterday. It's great.

There's a rotation of four different burgers, three of which come in vegan versions. Check out their facebook page for each day's burgers and other news. I had the Forestier - a tofu-based mushroom burger with lettuce, tomato, fried onions, and - get this - a vegan cheese slice. Good old Tofutti.

Everything is made to order and cooked properly, including a perfectly toasted bun. My omnivorous dining partner really enjoyed his Fromager burger too (the only one that's not available vegan style). The chips are amazingly good. I care a lot about the quality of chips.

A burger on its own costs around €6, and there's a good meal deal which includes a burger, a choice between chips and coleslaw (not vegan), and a drink for a very reasonable €9. There are even vegan quiches. I need to try a hotdog next time. There are sweet treats too, including two vegan options: cookies and cake slices.

The place itself is lovely: cosy, clean, modern, and run by super friendly staff. As well as a couple of tables outside, there's a nice downstairs eating area where you can help yourself to a good selection of sauces including American mustard. Everything is available to take away.

East Side Burgers
60 Boulevard Voltaire, 75011 (map)
Métro: St Ambroise (line 9), Richard Lenoir (line 5), or St Sébastien Froissart (line 8).
Closed Sunday and Monday. Open 12-6pm (12-8pm on Friday and Saturday)


  1. Lunchtime approaches, and I can't stop looking at this picture. There's something irresistible about these meals when they're served in rustly paper, as opposed to foam packaging or, perish the thought, served on a plate. Environmental friendliness; a good thing in any situation besides presenting burger and chips. And Dr Pepper, it's all too much. American diner retro = still great despite corporate burger monster hijacking.

    As an omnivore I have to say I find veg burgers far more appealing than the meat variety, especially when they're more creative than just using a silly meat substitute. I used to go to a place in London called Eat and Two Veg (now closed) that specialised in a burger made up of a substantial pile of sliced veg such as mushrooms, aubergines, beetroot and other stuff. Being a traditionalist, I always insisted on eating it burger style (pick up in two hands, shove in gob) even though you were clearly meant to utilise a knife and fork for the job. A delicious and thoroughly satisfying complete mess, every time.

    I'm sure when I finally visit Paris I shall be terrified of French restaurants, so this place might save me from eating only ham and cheese baguettes.

  2. Thanks Jamie! You should definitely come and visit, and could do much worse than eating here! You'll also get to recoil in horror as you watch French people eating burgers on plates with knives and forks. It's quite a sight.


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