The Byron story began in a small diner in the US. During a four-year stint in America, Tom Byng would frequently end up, late at night, with two or three friends in the Silver Top in downtown Providence, Rhode Island. They always ordered hamburgers – simple, tasty things – a bit messy, but made with good quality meat and only the classic adornments; some lettuce, tomato, red onion, and maybe a slice of cheese or bacon. The ultimate comfort food and so satisfying in their simplicity.
In 2007, frustrated at the lack of authentic US burgers in London, Tom set up Byron and opened its first restaurant on Kensington High Street. The menu is short and sweet with just a handful of hamburgers, sides, salads and desserts. It has proved a huge hit amongst critics, foodies and customers, combining an obsession with delivering the perfect hamburger with stylish design, personable service and a hip brand.
Then, in 2012, Tom heard about a London chef, Fred Smith, who was making some of the best burgers in London. Tom and Fred met for several coffees over many weeks, and eventually agreed to collaborate on a special burger for the Royal Jubilee that summer. It was cheekily named The Chilli Queen, and it was a huge success. Fred soon started work with Byron full-time. Together, Tom and Fred have put together the recipes for a cook-book to be published by Quadrille in 2016.
Byron continues to grow rapidly, and is on course to reach 70 restaurants by mid-2016.