Christmas is all about excess: too much food, too much wine, too much time with family members that we avoid for the rest of the year and all in all too much spent. You’d think that I’d welcome the New Year in with a month-long repentant and purgative fast. Instead I’m going in search of a good burger.
There have been recent rumblings in the principality of a restaurant where the food is unbeatable, the service friendly and the bill not extortionately high: a burger joint no less. I rush along to the port to find out more. The venue is all bare-stone walls and sleek black furnishings. It feels hip without trying too hard. The queue at the self-service counter is reassuring, the name a little less so.
Son of a Bun (30, route de la Piscine, tel: 97-98-70-70, www.sonofabun.fr) joins an illustrious line of burger restaurants whose names are dipped in heavy puns and double-entendres such as Buns and Balls, Burgatory and my personal favourite Au Cheval. It’s part of a mini-chain whose sister outlets are both food trucks (in Cagnes-sur-Mer and Carros). This bodes well as the best burger I’ve ever tasted came from a food truck at the end of a long student night out many moons ago.
The menu is short and to the point. After all, there’s no point in being over-flowery when it comes to burgers. There are eight choices of Badass Burgers including a chicken option, plus an obligatory salad of the day for those who probably shouldn’t have come to a burger joint in the first place. If the limp coleslaw were anything to go by, I’d give the salad a miss.
When we finally sit down with our burgers, I’m not disappointed. Son of a Bun gets the important things right: they’ve sourced good-quality beef and added a pillowy brioche bap. Everything else is window dressing. It doesn’t even matter that the tasty, but mysterious orange sauce bears an uncanny resemblance to Heinz’ American sauce (I spy a telltale Heinz bottle in the kitchen).
I have come with my girlfriend who used to manage the private finances of one of Monaco’s billionaires. Now that she’s a full-time mum, she simply muses about quantum mechanics in her spare time. As usual for Monaco ladies who lunch, we turn to the dilemma of Schrödinger’s cat with real-life equations*.
So I ponder: “Can I consider Monaco’s freedom of the press to be both dead and alive at the same time until I have tested the limitations of acceptability in print? Can I say this is the best burger in Monaco or not until I have eaten burgers at every other potential venue in town at which point I may turn into a Super Size Me?”
At this point, my friend turns to me and tells me that such superpositions are no longer relevant as the whole probabilistic basis of quantum mechanics has recently been turned upon its head. A deterministic approach is now preferred where the future evolves dynamically from the past. As I thoughtfully munch upon a burger that would make George Motz smile, I wonder what the future will hold for Monaco diners given the past?
*Schrödinger’s Cat is a cat imagined as being enclosed in a box with a radioactive source and a poison that will be released when the source unpredictably emits radiation, the cat being considered to be simultaneously both dead and alive until the box is opened and the cat observed.