Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Follow the Chef: Chef Poupée @ Bad Burger Bangkok

Anyone who remembers the On Nut Market, yes the rowdy one right opposite Tesco Lotus On Nut connected to On Nut BTS station will not forget a stall called Burgers and Bangers popping out of nowhere to sell gourmet burgers (that cost 4 times as much as any other meal sold by its neighbours) like hotcakes.

Much has changed since the the abrupt closure of On Nut market, but thankfully Chef Poupée is still finding her way to get her burgers into our tummies. During the Songkran break, I braved the waters, getting really really drenched in the process, and managed to catch up with her at her new baby, Bad Burger to discuss what ensued after being forced to leave On Nut.

Bad Burger, nice and comfy

My first impression of Chef Poupée was her incredible command of English, especially for someone who did not attend international schools nor went abroad for studies. Her cooking background was even more eye-opening. She honed her skills at Tables, Le Beaulieu and L'Atelier Joël Robuchon before deciding to share her talents with the mass market at an unlikely night market, with the most accessible dishes you can think of, the burger and the sausage.

Some familiar bad asses will watch you wash down burgers with craft beer.

According to Chef Poupée, she promptly started a new Burgers and Bangers at a permanent location in Asoke with a team of partners after the closure of On Nut Market, which built on the momentum of its predecessor. However, some board decisions stifled her freedom to make products that she wanted to present to her regulars. It soon became impossible for her to continue. Unfortunately, the partners decided to keep the name after her departure, so she had to accept the decision and start from scratch again with a new name. So, the birth of Bad Burger, this time with the full support of her immediate family, including her mum and brother.

The stars at Bad Burger, burgers and ribs.

In our short chat, something about Chef Poupée shone through, that is her passion for cooking, and the need for her to give what she thinks is the best to a large audience. She could have sold anything with her experience in the best kitchens in the country, but she still chose burgers after numerous obstacles threatened to end her run in the food business.

With her departure from Burgers and Bangers, she has moved away from sausages into BBQ ribs, which are sous vide for 24 hours (a disciple of the finest French chefs after all) before finishing off on the grill. I personally find the ribs refreshingly good, and also recommend her rib burger if you are not into beef.

In terms of the burgers, there's nothing much for me to say, but to tell all lovers of the original Burgers and Bangers that the founder is now showing off her skills at Bad Burger, and for all who have not tried her burgers before, give it a go and you will not be disappointed.

Update: Burgers and Bangers has since closed for good.


"Follow the Chef" is a new blog series where I sit down face to face with chefs and help them tell you what they want to say, in their perspective. My inspiration for this series stems from the fast-changing dining landscape in Bangkok, which is both exciting yet confusing for consumers like us. Do we follow the restaurants, or follow the chefs? I hope I can help you make a better decision.

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