MANILA -- Have you tried Raging Bull Burgers at Shangri-La at the Fort?
For two years now, Raging Bull Burgers has been churning out burgers at Bonifacio Global City, while being consistently on the list of top burger places in Manila.
Perhaps the secret of its success is that it straddles that beautiful balance of elements with its cool ambiance (subway tiles, a raging bull mural at the back), great location, terrific pricing, and tasty eats. It’s the most accessible of all of Shangri-La at the Fort’s food outlets, and its casual vibe is welcoming to all — whether you're an urbanite in need for some grub before/after drinking, or a fun family of three or more.
Turning two years this month, we take this moment to review Raging Bull’s six regular burgers, in the hopes to entice the uninitiated, or to temp the versed.
First comes the Pretender. The patty that took the most time to create, this is the vegetarian option in this meat-centric joint. You get the heft of the burger from a breaded red bean and quinoa patty, joined by fix-ins of guacamole, beet root, lettuce and bell peppers in a Scottish bread bap -- the bun of choice in Raging Bull Burgers.
Let’s take a moment to discuss the Scottish bread bap, a soft roll that’s similar but more rustic to the brioche. It reminds me of a soft giant pandesal roll but with a less crusty exterior, with that same hint of salty-sweetness. It makes for a great sandwich bun and lends itself beautifully to the burgers here.
Now, it’s time to get to the char-grilled meat of things.
We start with the Kick-Ass. This is their basic burger with 1/3 lbs of Angus beef (they have a meat-to-fat ratio of 70/30 for their patties) with lettuce, a dill pickle slice, and the Raging Bull Sauce. While basic, I find it’s the perfect canvas to taste the sauce bar, which includes house-made sauces like the Raging Bull BBQ sauce, You’re so Damn Hot Sauce, Lone Steer Brisket Sauce, El Mayo Classico, and different ketchup flavors from around the world (Black Pepper, Chipotle, etc), which I must add, also makes eating fries here really fun.
Most premium of the burgers, the Raging Wagyu is the signature burger of restaurant. Using Prime Australian Wagyu for its 1/3 lbs patty, accompanied by braised onions, chili chutney, lettuce, tomato, and dill pickle, it’s a must-try at least once.
This author’s personal favorite though is the Mighty Beast. Falling in love at first bite isn’t hard with this beauty of a burger -- 1/3 lbs of premium US Angus Beef, with griddle cooked maple bacon, aged cheddar, spicy beer mustard sauce, lettuce, tomato, and dill pickles. It hits all the right spots of fat and salt, to spice and tang in the mouth.
The remaining two options are chicken and fish.
Kickin’ Chicken has a 1/3 lbs grilled chicken thigh with griddle maple bacon, Raging Bull sauce, iceberg lettuce, tomato, and a dill pickle slice. It’s very seldom that we get a grilled chicken burger/sandwich that has grilled chicken that comes to you with dark crispy caramelized flecks with a reddish hue (and tastes) reminiscent of southwestern chicken BBQ, instead of the usual thing you get -- white chicken breast with grill marks. A great non-beef option.
If you’d ask me my two favorite burgers on the list though, it would be hands down the Mighty Beast and the Naked Fish.
A grouper fillet is battered (we guess a beer batter) and fried until crispy and joined by criolla (tangy fresh onion salad), romaine lettuce, and Nikkei tartar sauce in the bun. Fish that’s crispy outside, juicy inside with fixins that create an interplay of salt and acid, to even bitter and spice with the bite of onion, for this author, the Naked Fish is the full potential of what a fish sandwich/burger can be.
Burgers are best eaten with a side of thick cut fries. Or try the messy fries – topped with pulled pork, cheese, and their BBQ sauce, for something with more oomph.
Enjoy all these while sipping on alcoholic libations (bourbon shots, draft/local/imported beers, etc), or their thick and creamy milkshakes.
While lines and waiting are often the norm especially during the evenings in Raging Bull Burgers, it’s a challenge that’s taken up by many, and why not? In Raging Bull Burgers, burgers are tasty, sauces are plenty, and the prices are spot on.