Scotch Mist — Mac & Wild
It seems all of my blogs begin this way, but ah well: I have been meaning to visit Mac & Wild for the longest time. Their mission is to provide a genuine taste of the Scottish highlands to us ignorant Southerners, and they take the sourcing of their ingredients very seriously.
More than that however, as the menu is awash with black pudding, haggis, burgers and other delights it is right up my alley.
I decided to take the plunge after being made aware of their current Wimbledon special: The Murray Mound Burger.
Before wolfing down some meaty morsels I was able to really take in the atmosphere of the place, which I think can accurately be described as a “rustic huntsman” aesthetic. There are animal skins hanging from the ceiling, antlers everywhere, slightly eerie photos and art adorning the walls and tables that look like they’ve been taken straight from a felled tree.
I must say that I greatly enjoyed the decor despite myself. It once again called into question one of the greatest paradoxes of my identity: I really like animals but I also really like eating them…
This special burger in honour of Scotl- I mean Britain’s national tennis’ing treasure is comprised of two beef patties, black pudding, mushroom ketchup, pickles, cheese and a brioche bun. Bliss.
I am a massive fan of black pudding, and obviously a massive fan of burgers, but I have been burned before by the seemingly perfect Bleecker Black. Thankfully I can reveal that I was not destined to experience such disappointment again — the Murray Mound is everything the Bleecker Black should have been and more.
The beef was straight-up delicious. Whilst approaching melt-in-your-mouth levels of tenderness it manages to maintain a bit of bite to it so the meat isn’t lost in the glorious whole. And there’s two patties of it, so double win.
In fact there were copious amounts of basically every component; a very generous construction. The black pudding was thankfully plentiful and evidently of the highest quality, packing that distinctive simultaneity of creamy and smoky.
The whole thing was basically smothered in cheese — which is no bad thing — but I was particularly pleasantly surprised by the mushroom ketchup which was a new concept to me. This sauce ensured things didn’t get too dry (far from it in fact) but also added a subtle sweet aftertaste to each bite, working in tandem with the brilliant brioche bun.
In short, the Murray Mound blows the Bleecker Black out of the water on every possible count. Each individual component and thus the whole burger is on a whole other level, plus it’s a more generous serving. All this for only £1 extra is such a steal, though I’m left depressed that this is such a limited time special! If you miss out this time it will be a long wait until next Wimbledon.
I also tried a side of the haggis mac & cheese as it seemed like the most appropriate dish for the restaurant. Alas I was less impressed with this effort.
Whilst the reasonably-sized portion was well-endowed with cheese, the accompanying white sauce was a bit bland. Each mouthful containing some of the haggis was a little oasis of flavour, though these were perhaps less frequent than they might have been.
That said, it is still a pretty strong side of mac ’n’ cheese compared to others I have tried in similar establishments.
I am beyond ecstatic that I finally forced myself to check this place out. Not only did I get to try my favourite burger of recent times but I now know that I would happily dive into pretty much everything on the menu.
Expect chronicles of further mac and/or wild endeavours in the future.
I visited Mac & Wild Fitzrovia on 05/07/2017 and paid £18 (including 12.5% service) for the Murray Mound special burger and a side of haggis mac & cheese.