Mine is slathered- and it’s the only word, here- in a thick old school gravy, a deep dark concoction. I’m bored with words like ‘dirty’ thrown around with this type of food- but this has me reaching for ‘filthy’. I find myself resorting to the heinous act of using knife and fork to finish mine off, hating myself, but only because I have already littered our table with enough gravy-stained napkins for it to resemble some kind of dirty protest. Crucially, the challah has held, despite the gravy. That’s impressive in itself.
In the spirit of thorough research, I have the buttermilk chicken breast on the side, and very good it is too. The mushroom duxelle in the Beef Wellington ‘burger’- a special- brings an unmistakably properly earthy tone, the gravy tangy with red wine and thick (too thick for some around the table, over-reduced a touch, but with impeccable depth of flavour.) There’s salt and snap from Carmarthen ham and a star turn from a flat iron steak. The gravy is a treat, good enough to grace a ‘proper’ meal: a hefty, tart-sweet reduction of red wine, vinegar and local honey, glossy with animal fats.
Recommended? Absolutely. Hills has a mission in mind and boasts a quiet dedication to getting it right. You sense they are not content to sit on their deserved laurels, and if they were to tweak these patties- perhaps with even longer-aged beef- and consider moving south, Cardiff burger specialists would be have sleepless nights. This menu would dominate the burger scene like Cassius’ Caesar, bestriding the narrow world like a Colossus and rewriting all current standings. Yes, they really are that good; that I mention them in the same bracket as Hereford’s Beefy Boys should tell regular readers (yes, both of you, and bless your souls) how highly I rate this visit.
I left Hills more burger than man. A leisurely drive back makes for a memorable evening all round, despite the regrettable seasonal knitwear. You may get many things in Hills: juice-spattered, sauce-mottled. My fingers were sticky for some time; and yes, I licked them clean. Several times. But you won’t leave hungry. Or unimpressed.
Telephone | 01874 611714
Email | firstname.lastname@example.org
Twitter | @HillsBrecon