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Apr 23
Beyoğlu Burger Wars: Counter Offensive

Six months ago we were very concerned to see one of our favorite burger joints, Mano Burger, closed down. The workers gutting the place told us there was financial trouble. Someone else said they’d opened up shop on the Asian side, in Bostancı. For six months, Mano seemed to go incognito.

We were then equally puzzled a couple of weeks ago to see a new hamburger restaurant, with the same décor, menu style and a suspiciously similar logo open in the same location. We can’t speak for the food, but in the category of originality, Roll Burger scores very low.

Skulking around Beyoğlu, thinking about the injustice visited upon our friends at Mano, we turned the corner at Asmalı Mescit, and, like a mirage, saw hanging off the side of a building the sign of Mano Burger – the real Mano Burger.

We stopped in for one of their classic “Oxnard” burgers, fries and a chat with the management about what happened. In the previous location in Tünel, it seems the municipality had complaints about their ventilation system, which often left the square smelling like one big grilled patty. When they extended the chimneys up above the roof, the whirling dervish museum right behind them complained about the unpleasant view from their yard. Stuck between the angry dervishes and municipal inspectors licking their chops, the Mano team decided to leave the Tünel location and moved over to Asmalı Mescit Caddesi.

So what about Roll Burger?

Mano’s old landlord seemed to think there was still good burger-flipping potential in the shop despite its ventilator blues. Apparently hoping to retain Mano’s traffic, he opened Roll Burger right on their heels. The Mano crew isn’t pleased with Roll Burger’s ambush but remains confident that it won’t hinder their business or their claim to be the best burger in town. “The flavor is here and people know that,” said Mano manager Cihad Bey.

Address: Asmalı Mescit Caddesi 7, Beyoğlu
Telephone: 212-292-7542

(photos by Ansel Mullins)

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8 Responses to “ Beyoğlu Burger Wars: Counter Offensive ”
  1. Hi, fellow Eaters. This article’s timing is uncanny, as I just ate at Roll for the first time last night. I, too, was also a big fan of the original Mano and was surprised and disappointed when it disappeared! I’m glad to know that they have opened up in a new location close by.
    About Roll: not bad but the burgers were pretty thin and less flavorful than Mano’s. There was also a way too high bun-to-burger ratio. I felt a bit ripped off. Cheese was good. The fries were ok. I got the seasoned ones but they were over-seasoned and limp.
    Mano is definitely better, in my opinion.

  2. Hi.
    When i read this article i was very surprised. This seems not objective, in my opinion. First, the logo of roll burger is definitely different. The concept is similar but the menu is different. For example there ise a new menu at rollburger which called country menu(my favorite), i definitely did not taste at manoburger.
    Labeling companies must not be easy like that. If this job have patents then rollburger must buy this but it has not as i know. it seems like two turnspit argue about urfa or adana kebap and blame the otherself with being not original and it seems not professional.
    I ate at rollburger a few times and i like it. First their price is lower than manoburger but their meatball is bigger. Heinz sauces(things that helps getting the real taste pf hamburgers) that i enjoy must, off course.
    and i’m a little confused. if mano had problems and must left the tunel but roll burger has not this problems? i wish they has not the same problems cause they look good now.
    and i like eating blues menu when playing mary had a little lamb. 🙂

  3. Adonita,
    Thanks for the comment. It’s true, the focus of our post was the disappearance and reappearance of Mano Burger, a place that we really do enjoy. Aside from the resemblance of the old Mano and the new Roll- something we find striking- we can’t really speak about the place. So, we will go down there soon and try the burger with an open mind and report back on this comment thread.

  4. it is a shame…this article smells obviously a smear campaign. Mano burger seems to had spent a lot of money to be on the main page:)). of course you will make advertisement, but not someone over.such initiatives shows that Roll burger better than Mano burger. So I will go Roll Burger definitely .

  5. How I wished to be in Beyoglu to check this all out up close!!

    By the way, thrilled to hear your nomination at Saveur and just voted for you – go Istanbul Eats go!!:)

  6. Ozlem hanim,

    Destekleriniz icin icten tesekkur ederiz!

  7. Pokerci Hoca

    Apr 30, 2012

    Cheap shot by Roll, but not unexpected around here.

    While we’re on the subject, you should check out Komsu Burger in 4. Levent. They occasionally have trouble with their buns, but their patty with its fresh-off-the-grill smell is excellent.

  8. Went to Mano burger in Caddebostan for the first time last week and was very pleased! Its the first time i ate a burger in Turkey and felt like i could have been back in the US

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