Sunday, September 14, 2008

More Mini-Burgers:

Yonge & Dundas Square
(plus other fine establishments across the nation)

As an avid protester of anything and everything onion, I was sceptical about these tiny burgers at first. They were described by the lovely Stephanie as Kobe beef patties, cheese, onion 'strings' (which I was assured were different from onions and would not affect my burger experience), and mustard, all in a 3-bite-sized package. I have to reluctantly admit that the first bite won me over with ease. The buns were so nice and crispy, grilled with some kind of oil, the beef was tender and juicy, although quite different from your typical hamburger beef, and the onions were barely noticeable, as advertized.

Four and half...hamburger patties out of five?

Matthew Nixon

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Magically delicious

1121 Broad St
San Luis Obispo, CA

In the world of vegetarian burgers, there are 2 types: the ones that try to taste like "hamburgers" and the types that don't, but are simply shaped to fit on a burger bun. At Big Sky Cafe, I think I have found the mecca of the rare 3rd type - the fucking delicious one.

First off, let's look at the menu description, shall we?

VEGETARIAN BEAN BURGER - (vegan) tofu, pinto beans and black beans mixed with oats, salsa & rice. Served on a wheat bun with lettuce, vine-ripened tomatoes and roasted tomatillo salsa .....$8.95

If a Mexican was a vegan, he would want to be buried underneath the kitchen at the Big Sky Cafe in San Luis Obispo.

Never have I seen such a unique combination of ingredients formed into a half inch patty and placed on round bread. And speaking of bread, it wasn't just a wheat bun made for the complaining douchebags over starches and carbs, but made as if wheat was the ONLY kind of bread a real human would have. It was crunchy on the top like a bowl of rice krispies, but so soft in the middle you thought it was cotton candy. And I'm not sure what kind of special powers vines have over tomatoes, but they should certainly be allowed to leave Hogwarts more often.

If you ever have the glorious chance to drive along the coast of California, and are craving something of the local land, hit up Big Sky and douse your troubles with a VB Burger.

- Siobhan
Californian Veggie Connoisseur


So, a week or so ago, we had a group of guys get together for a bachelor party for our friend, Jesse. We decided to go out to eat at a well-known Atlanta restaurant, The Vortex. The Vortex has been voted in the weekly newspaper, Creative Loafing, as having the best burger in Atlanta every year since 1993. I don't know if I could agree as the BEST, but definitely top 5. Anyways, they offer a burger known as the Double Bypass burger. Everyone was trying to get someone to order it, but no one felt up for it. I decided later to avoid the $15 price tag on it and just make it at home. Maybe the actual burger wasn't as good as The Vortex, but it gave me a good idea of what this monster would taste like. The Double Bypass consists of an 8 oz. burger (your choice of a beef, bison, turkey or black bean patty. I used turkey.), 4 slices of good ol' American cheese, 4 slices of bacon and a fried egg. Oh, did I mention the bun is replaced with 2 grilled cheese sandwiches? yeah… So once this was completely done, I dove in. This thing is about 5 or 6 inches tall, so on first bite, I missed the patty all together and it tasted like a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich. I continued consuming this surreal burger and it was phenomenal. So juicy, so cheesy, so bacony… so ridiculous. I did have to pace myself, as overwhelming as it was, but I made it through and finished after taking a couple of breaks. Overall, if you are very hungry, and don't plan on doing anything for at least 2 hours and are up for a challenge… this burger is for you. Maybe I should try The Luther Burger next time…


If at all interested, the Vortex can be found at:
878 Peachtree Street
Atlanta, GA.


438 Moreland Avenue
Atlanta, GA.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Thanks Maggie!

455 Myrtle Avenue
Brooklyn, New York

Saturday was basically a hurricane in New York City, so we decided to leave Manhattan, and just hangout in Brooklyn for the night. As soon as we got home, Carly was like "Okay! We are ordering Maggie Browns!". Everyone placed their orders, and Jeff braved the wind and rain to pick it up from around the corner for us. First of all, the fries were a mistake - it was supposed to be a side of mac n' cheese (which Maggie's so glady gave us additionally for free when we called them back!) I ordered my hamburger 'medium', with swiss cheese and avocados. I still find it so weird that only in America they ask you how you want your hamburger cooked. I thought for some reason that hamburger was a regulated thing, and always had to be cooked well done. In any case, it was way less cooked than medium! I bit in to see bright pink, and was instantly freaked out! Everyone reassured me that it was fine, so I continued eating (obviously). It kept getting more and more rare near the center, but was still pretty good. I couldn't finish eating it though, since I was already filled with beer before eating, as well as still a little concerned about possibly getting sick from it.

Overall, I was happy with Maggie Brown's, although would like to try their hamburger a little more cooked next time. I'd also like to go to the restaurant itself, since they seemed so nice over the phone, and apparently have Happy Hour with 2 for 1 draft beers daily.

Definitely a cute little gem in Clinton Hill.

i just realized that I actually have been to Maggie Brown's before! About a month ago I was in Brooklyn, and my friend John and I went there for lunch and a drink. I didn't eat anything, but I really love how the place looked. Amazing textured wallpaper, and a really weird waiter who forgot we were even there...all good though!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Wendy's abomination!

6000 restaurants worldwide!

Approximately once every other month, I take a drive up to Ottawa for a weekend visit.  Back when I lived in Montreal, I would travel the 401 to native Toronto at least once a month, and traipse the 2hr expanse between Montreal and Ottawa on a bi-weekly basis.  Road trips in my adult life are frequent and plenty.

Within this time of travel, I would always - without fail - stop at one of the many cookie cutter rest-stops littered alongside the highways.  Without fail, I'd consume more than my fair share of fast food and without fail, I'd be excited as Gary Glitter in a toy store.

So when an enthusiastic Ms. Holmes approached me about doing a review, I could not help but wonder why none of the fast-food burger shacks along these well travelled roads hadn't been subject to review.  I mean, sure, McDicks was recently dissected.  But It's not the same as making a mission of rest-stop food. There is indeed a perceived and yes, delusional difference between eating Mickey D's for lunch on a hump day than there is eating it at a pit stop.  And since, the glorious Golden Arches have already been subject of review, I'd figure I'd hone in on a personal favorite - the Wendy's Triple Decker.

I should preface this critique first by stating that of the fast food burger magnates, Wendy's ranks as my favorite.  This is squarely based on me not feeling like shit - both literally and figuratively - after sucking back a burg (as much as I love Big Macs, I will say this:  they slide out your ass faster than you can say poop). Shit value notwithstanding, Wendy's also doesn't really make you subconsciously feel like a mid-western pile of shit like a McDonalds or Burger King does.

Okay, so the Triple Decker.  This burger isn't really for the faint of heart.  With three square patties, cheese, trimmings and an extra order of bacon, the flagship 3D (get it? Triple D?)  weighs in at a hefty 3lbs.  Okay maybe not 3 lbs.  That could be a bold face lie.  But shit's heavy.  And not only heavy, but it gushes grease and juices out every corner upon every squeeze.  Its theatrics alone are enough to ward away the weak.

Unlike the BK's and the MCD's, Wendy burgers actually taste and feel like well...real meat (this could also attribute to the non-white trash feeling many get after scarfing down a Whopper).  Fast food's authenticity has never been a point of contention with me, but it's definitely a cherry on top when the meat is actually meat.  it's kind of the same way we look at the Canadian Olympic team:  our expectations aren't very high, but when someone does achieve higher than the bar, we bathe in all its glory to make us feel good.

Unfortunately I didn't feel good an hour after eating this thing thus rendering my initial paradigm useless like tits on a nun. I felt like I swallowed a baby who shat its diapers. The mammoth of a burger never sat well in my stomach and although I did hold her in till we got to Ottawa, the aftermath wasn't pretty. I basically gave birth to Biggie. A big black mess left my ass and that kind of spoiled the elation and sense of accomplishment that swept me when I was eating it. It kind of bummed me out. It deflated me and crushed my burger ego. Note to anyone: fast food burgers - delicious or not - are mounds of processed crap. And processed crap doesn't make you feel hot. They just make you birth black babies.

- chenyip

Monday, September 1, 2008

Homemade goodness!

Oh hi there...

Being the last weekend of the summer, Christina and I decided to have a bbq this afternoon, and I homemade hamburgers for us. Not to blow my own horn here, but they were super delicious, and a perfect meal for such a hot, sunny holiday Monday. I would love to give you the actual recipe, but the way I cook is all about experimenting. No recipes required...

However, today I used:

- 1lbs. of extra lean ground beef
- 1 egg
- 1 sleeve of soda crackers
- tons of black pepper
- worcestershire sauce (very important!)
- hot sauce (all I had was Franks Chili Lime sauce, which worked surprisingly well!)
- a giant clove of garlic

Squish everything together with your hands, form into 4 patties, then bbq those guys up! If you have some time to let them sit in the fridge for a bit first, they'll absorb all the flavors a little more. Either way though, so yummy!! I got these really fresh baked garlic and rosemary buns to put the hamburgers in. All we had were cheese slices, which I felt a little disappointed paring with this, however it worked out for the best!

*If you have any good hamburger recipes to boast about, please let me know, and I will post!