I was sat having dinner last week two tables away from a couple of girls I recognise from Instagram. As we order food theirs arrives en masse; one pulls out a lighting rig out of a bag for pictures, then the videos of scanning the food from above and then from the side profile. I am fixated as they take it turns to get stills of them pretending to eat, and then more videos of the food going perilously close to the mouth without ever entering it. When our food arrives some fifteen minutes later they are still recording footage. Maybe they also have a microwave in the bag. Our two tables are cleared at the same time, their food is mostly untouched yet I have just noticed that “everything was amazing” on a latest post. Funny world is Instagram. Not sure it’s for me.

That environment couldn’t be more removed from The Flapper. I’m not sure your average Instagrammer knows it exists, and if they did, I’m almost certain they wouldn’t be in here filming reels. It’s a Birmingham institution, a pub I’ve been coming to for two decades, bar the few years it was closed. They play rock music loud, they have two pool tables, and crucially, the clientele really couldn’t give less of a fuck how many followers you have. Shortly after they reopened they announced Stackz burgers in the kitchen. I’d had one before, second day of their previous kitchen stint at Sommar brewery a minutes walk up the road. I enjoyed it quite a bit.

I enjoyed this less. Quite a bit less, mostly due to an extremely heavy hand on the salt that left me dried out and gasping for water for the following 24 hours. First the burgers; good patty that’s not going to threaten the big guns of the city anytime soon, excellent bun. The big cheese is the best way of experiencing this, being essentially a double cheese burger. Far less successful is the special with pork belly and ‘nduja joining the patty. The belly salty and fatty and not particularly nice. I take it out. The rest is okay but still too salty. It doesn’t get finished.

I remember the chicken being great from that first visit. I think the recipe has changed. It’s heavily brined and I’m guessing that the coating has some kind of cereal involved, given the crunch on the outside. It’s way too salty. The chips are great. Really great. I’ll order the chips again. The bill for the food alone is thirty quid. And here lies the problem with Stackz; Birmingham has arguably the strongest burger scene in the UK with some superstars dotted across the city. I won’t be drawn into the conversation of who is best, but I can say that on this showing it isn’t Stackz.