Burger Travel Guide: Toronto

This week we’re doing something TOTALLY DIFFERENT for the blog. Ms.D of the broad house (a group much like ours in Toronto) and I thought it would be fun an informative to exchange a blog post of our top three burgers in our respective cities. Read on to learn all about awesome burgers in Toronto!

Read my article about Philly burgers on their site!

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Story by Dawna (http://thebroadhouse.com)

We know how much our American cousins love burgers but I am willing to bet we Canadians love burgers more! Toronto has a variety of world class restaurants and that goes for burgers too. Whether it’s a veggie burger, beef, camel or bison, over the past few years this city has exploded with burger places popping up what seems like every month and the variety of choices are unlimited.

Well, You can see the dilemma.It’s impossible to keep up! From grandma’s greasy spoon to gourmet burger joints there really is something for everyone regardless of budget.Torontonians are also becoming increasingly more aware and concerned about eating local and organic and these burger places are filling the demand, sating cravings and filling bellies.

There’s always lists being published..The top 10, the top 5 , the top 20 , the best of this, the best of that, that it gets overwhelming and redundant so when I was asked to talk about the best 3 burgers in Toronto at first I thought that this would be an impossible mission as truly there has never been a burger I didn’t like but yes, some have been more burgasm worthy than others.

So here it goes!

Dangerous Dan’s
(www.dangerousdans.com)

Located in the heart of Broadview Village on Queens St.E across from a strip joint called Jilly’s has been around for about 20yrs.Run by James and his wife Amy, they named the place after his Grandfather.James makes no beef or bones about giving you more for your money’s worth. The meat is honest to goodness greasy, juicy beef not overly spiced and with names like The Big Kevorkian,The Big Pig,The Bulls Ball and The Coronary Special to name a few, well let’s’ just say If you want to eat ‘healthy’ This is NOT the place.

Watch our showcase video here (http://youtu.be/JK0tGUAvVH4) No men were harmed in the making of this video.

Warning: It gets messy.

The Beet –Organic Café
(http://thebeet.ca)

The Beet-Organic Cafe is located in the Junction , an area of the city that was dry from 1904 right up until 1997, meaning the sale of alcohol was banned because of the Temperance movement but I digress…

The Beet has been part of the neighbourhood now for almost 5yrs and is owned and operated by 2 women. One a Certified Nutritionist, the other a Homeopathic Doctor. Not only is the food they make and serve local and organic the décor was planned with eco-conscientiousness. Even the take out cutlery is biodegradable being made of potato starch. What is most fascinating about this place and their burgers is that they are baked in the oven and served on a kamut bun. In fact, all burgers should be served on this type of bun.You can read more about it here. (www.kamut.com)

The Beet only serves 3 kinds of burgers. A lamb burger, bison burger and a veggie burger made of tofu and cashew nuts. Being a meat eater, not liking tofu and being hard to please when it comes to veggie burgers I have to say hands down this is the best veggie burger I have ever had. I cannot rave about it enough!
You can see the showcase video here (http://youtu.be/CT4qHcRpu5E)

Burger Stomper Burger Bar
(http://www.burgerstomperbar.com)

This is one of the newest additions to the burger scene having opened this past summer of 2012.They are a welcome sight in the heart of Greek town that is lined with health food stores and Greek restaurants on The Danforth.These guys are also the inventors of The Burger Stomper (http://www.burgerstomper.com/ a hamburger press that guarantees a perfectly cooked (meaning keeping the juices in, cooking it evenly) and perfectly shaped burger in 5 seconds.Their burgers are dreamy, delicious and unrivaled with the local triple ‘A’ Canadian beef being grounded fresh daily and stomped into 6oz patties or 2oz sliders. If you’ve ever been to Montreal you understand what real bagels are and what real poutine is and Burger Stomper will also give you “poutinegasms”.

I could go on but I’ll let our showcase video speak for itself.(http://youtu.be/nBPkBBj7Gxk)

It’s also the place where we are hosting our first annual Burger BROADS Burger BALL on November 22nd so, should you ever make your way to Toronto we would love to show you around and share a burger experience with you.

We Find.we Eat.we Share.

Ms.D ( Madame of www.TheBrOadHouSe.com )

burger news 10/12/2012

Good burger day everyone!

It’s a great time to love burgers! A few weeks ago I had the chance to go to a cheeburger cheeburger. WOW! This is like a burger lover’s heaven. The restaurant is set up like a diner with all the focus on burgers – I don’t mind that! Now I know you’re thinking that burgers from a silly chain could never be good. I’m here to tell you that they are!

I got the “serious” size burger (1/2 lb) with bacon and blue cheese. The burger was cooked perfectly and the toppings were amazing. The toppings are what really make this place – the combinations are endless. Topping choices range from traditional LTO to peanut butter. There is truly something for everyone. Another great thing about the cheeburger cheeburger in Newark is the staff. They were almost creepily the nicest people I have ever met. This restaurant is right smack dab in the middle of the University of Deleware’s campus. You’d think that after being worn down by college kids the staff would be nasty and short tempered, not the case!

If you’re driving through Deleware, this spot is a quick ride from 95. I would highly recommend this as a fun and delicious stop!

Also, Devon visited Gino’s burgers (NOT Gino’s cheesesteaks) in King Of Prissia, here’s what she had to say:

“Gino’s burgers and chicken on first glance is a lot like 5 guys without the peanuts. You order at the counter and someone brings you your food. Everything there is cooked fresh and you have several options for toppings and sauces to customze a burger.

They also have a few other burgers to choose from. I got the Bang Bang burger with american cheese, chipotle BBQ sauce, jalepenos, and frizzled onions. I also added sauteed mushrooms. When the burger came is was unbelievably juicy as those griddled burgers will be. The beef had good flavor and nice texture from the griddle. I like the jalepenos with the BBQ sauce as well.

The other two people I was with really enjoyed their Burgers too. The fries were basic and under whelming. The onion rings were salty, but I’m attributing that to the seasoned flour. We also ordered a batch of chicken tenders and what we got was basically a whole chicken. These tenders are enormous and very juicy. I will add a side note that one of the really fat ones (aka half a chicken breast) was a tad under done, and the breading was salty, but again, I think thats cause someone got a little over zealous seasoning the flour. All in all it was a great meal value with the Group we had and we’ll probably go back.”

I think I’m going to go to Gino’s sometime and check it out too! It’s nice to know of a good burger wherever you go. Driving through Deleware? Cheeburger cheeburger. Doing some holiday shopping at the KOP Mall? Gino’s. These are excellent notes to have in your back pocket.

Last but never least, our friends at Sketch have an announcement that they’re adding Chicken burgers to their menu!

“As much as we love our brisket and short rib burgers (not to mention our Kobe beef), we have a new favorite at Sketch.

Our variety of chicken burgers will keep your palate interested week upon week. The coarsely ground chicken that we use adapts to an infinite amount of flavor combinations and still has that hearty burger feels, without any of the fat. A few of our favorites have been the Mesquite BBQ with purple cabbage cole slaw, Vietnamese Bahn Mi with lemongrass and daikon pickle, Bollywood with cilantro and coconut chutney, Buffalo Chicken with Bleu cheese, sliced onion and a carrot and celery slaw and a Tandoori Chicken burger topped with a snack-filled Pappadum.
Chicken burgers will now be on the menu permanently, in rotating flavors.”

It’s always good to know what’s going on at Sketch! Well I hope everyone has another amazing week living and loving burgers. Oh, did I mention that this month’s burger club meeting is going to be at Hickory Lane?? I CAN’T WAIT to try their burgers! Get excited about this meeting, people! Till then!

September burger club meeting at Smokin’ Betty’s

Story and Photos by Julianne Huegel (of two eat philly)

I’ve missed the past few Burger Club meetings thanks to the brilliant decision to take a class this summer, so I knew I needed to make it this month! This month’s burger venue of choice was BBQ joint Smokin’ Betty’s (116 S. 11th Street), located directly across from Jefferson Hospital. I’ve been here several times for pretty average BBQ, salads, and sandwiches but had somehow never tried any of the burgers. For our meeting, Smokin’ Betty’s cordoned off a section of their upstairs dining room for us burger eaters, and even printed out special menus with our logo- so fancy! Contrary to what my photo depicts, there are five burger options at Smokin’ Betty’s- standard Angus, turkey, or veggie burgers plus a couple of spruced up, unique sandwiches.

Before my food arrived, I snapped a pic of Megan’s housemade veggie burger ($9.95), which I thought looked representative of a really well-formed meat-free patty- nothing too crumbly or wet. The patty appeared to include quinoa, carrots, lots of herbs, and possibly peas- a good mix of ingredients typically lends a more flavorful hand. Decorated with poblano relish, sprouts, and the requisite lettuce and tomato, the burger also comes with a side of decent hand-cut fries.

I was feeling particularly adventurous (nothing new there) and opted for the Tur-Duck-En Burger ($12.50). I have to preempt my description with my opinion that this doesn’t qualify as a burger- it was actually a Thanksgiving sandwich. Reminiscent of a solid day-after-Thanksgiving lunch of leftovers, the patty is a mix of turkey, duck, and chicken. Juicy and flavorful, though the second patty slipped underneath the meat demanded it’s share of tastebud attention. Homemade stuffing full of sage and thyme is shaped into a smaller disc and crisped up a bit, distributing its flavors through each bite.

A chunky cranberry sauce adds sweet and tart elements and replaces any moistness that you might typically get from ketchup or other condiments. The menu advertised southern style gravy, but I didn’t notice any. The last element was curly ribbons of sweet potato- slightly chewy and without much flavor, but they did add a bit of textural interest to an otherwise all-soft sandwich.

The other jazzed up option is the Betty Burger ($12.95), based around a hefty 1/2 pound sirloin patty. Perfectly formed and cooked exactly to order, the meat set a delicious tone for the rest of the sandwich. The Betty tries to do it all- a thick layer of melted white cheddar, a few pieces of shredded confit pork belly, slices of ripe avocado, roasted garlic aioli, AND a runny fried egg, all on top of the usual lettuce and tomato.

I thought that the overall flavor combination was superb, but my more minimalist boyfriend was a bit overwhelmed by this admittedly somewhat ridiculous conglomeration. The avocado and egg made the burger lopsided, making for a bit of a mess as the bun tilted precariously after a few bites. Speaking of the bun, the one’s they use are unoffensive- not distracting in taste, texture, or density.

The two sandwiches were drastically different, but I enjoyed both- though the Tur-Duck-En alone isn’t going to quench any burger cravings. Overall I thought Smokin’ Betty’s was a great choice for Burger Club- the open space easily fit our larger group and the range of choices meant everyone left happy. Smokin’ Betty’s is actually currently holding the second place overall rating amongst our club’s rated burgers!

Smokin’ Betty’s
116 S. 11th Street