Delicious Animal!

Posted in Fast-Food/Sit-in Counter on August 10, 2011 by beefwhisperer

Had the Animal Style Burger for lunch at The Stockyards (http://bit.ly/pJynJT) today. Yummy goodness as always!

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Some thoughts on the perfect burger

Posted in Uncategorized on August 6, 2011 by beefwhisperer

A slightly older article, but definitely has some good thoughts about different burger-cooking methods… worth the read for anyone trying to figure out their ideal home recipe.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/01/dining/01burg.html?_r=1

East End Toronto – Where are the options?

Posted in Uncategorized on January 8, 2011 by beefwhisperer

Trying to think of a new place in either the Beaches or East York to check out tonight. Kind of a last minute thing. What would be a good place to check out tonight, readers? I’ve already considered Buger Priest and Great Burger Kitchen but want to try something new.

Let me know your ideas!

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The Stockyards – Animal Style Burger

Posted in Fast-Food/Sit-in Counter, Take-out Counter on January 7, 2011 by beefwhisperer

Date: October-21-10

Restaurant Name: The Stockyards

Location: 699 St.Clair Avenue West

Phone: (416) 658-9666

Email: info@thestockyards.ca

Web: http://www.thestockyards.ca/

Price Range (Burger): $8-$12

Price Range (Total Meal): $13-$19

Service/Style: Lunch Counter

Reservations: Not Required

Short Review: A “smokehouse and lardery”, with options for ribs and chicken as well as burgers. They make a mean “animal style” burger as an ongoing special! Tasty and different

The Meal

Meat Type: Custom Ground Beef

Patty Weight: 2x 3 oz. patties

Cheese Type: American Cheddar

Bun: White, Toasted

Toppings: Pickles, Lettuce

Garnishes: Special Sauce

Sides: Fries

Drink: Ginger Ale

Service: Friendly – service counter with a tolerable wait

Presentation: Basket

 

The Ratings


Burger: 8.0

Sides: 6.0

Service: 6.5

Atmosphere: 6.8

Overall: 7.0

 

The Long Story


On a last minute lark, I decided to join a couple of friends who were going to The Stockyards for lunch. They were trying the fried chicken, but when I got there I noticed the “”Specials”” chalkboard had an “”Animal Style”” burger listed. For those who aren’t familliar with In & Out Burger, an Animal-Style burger is basically a double cheesburger with pickles, lettuce, and special sauce – think a Big Mac with no centre bun. Having never visited the legendary In & Out chain myself, I decided to give this interpretation a try.

I was not disappointed 🙂

After seating myself with my friends at the counter (which is the only option at The Stockyards – take-out is also a readily-available), it was a short wait for my burger, which arrived with my fries in a basket. Cosmetically, the burger was gorgeous. Off to a good start, and upon biting in, the verdict was final: delicious.

Beef nerds: This Animal-Style burger was two 3 oz. patties, listed as custom-made, which I assume means made in-house. The meat was perfectly-cooked, with a slight hint of cripness on the outside, leading to a light-brown juicy interior – one wouldn’t expect to see pink from such a small patty, but although well-done, t had the flavour of a medium-well cooked piece. On its own, the beef was tender and had a tiny hint of pepper. With crisp lettuce, pickles, and the special sauce on top of a melting pile of cheese, I was in heaven.

Although listed as a special when I went, I’ve gone back to the Stockyards twice since, most recently just before Christmas, and it was still on the chalkboard then, so if you’re in the area of St. Clair and Christie, most definitely make sampling this burger a resolution!

Burger Shoppe (2009) – Part 2

Posted in Fast-Food/Sit-in Counter, Gourmet Burgers, Take-out Counter on January 7, 2011 by beefwhisperer

Date: June-23-09

Restaurant Name: Burger Shoppe

Location: 688 Queen St E

Phone: (416) 850-7026

Email: N/A

Web: http://www.burgershoppe.com/

Price Range (Burger): Under $7

Price Range (Total Meal): $8-$12

Service/Style: Counter

Reservations: Not Required

Short Review: A classic cheeseburger with all the traditional toppings. Totally delicious. At 4oz, perfect for the small appetite!

The Meal

Meat Type: Naturally-raised beef

Patty Weight: 4oz.

Cheese Type: Cheddar

Bun: Toasted, White

Toppings: Lettuce, Tomato, Onion, Pickles

Garnishes: Mayo, Ketchup, Dijon Mustard

Sides: None

Drink: Vanilla Milkshake

Service: Friendly

Presentation: Metal Basket

The Ratings

Burger: 7.5

Sides: N/A

Service: 7.0

Atmosphere: 6.5

Overall: 7.3

The Long Story

So here is an older review of Burger Shoppe’s quarter-pound “baby” burger.

Having already reviewed the ambience and service in my previous post on the Riverdale location of Burger Shoppe, I’ll get right into the burger.

Beef Nerds: The baby burger patty at Burger Shoppe is thinner than the regular one, but still fresh and juicy. I was particularly hungry that day and this was a side-snack to my main course burger, but for anyone looking for a light meal or something to satisfy a quick craving, this burger would hit the spot on its own. The beef was flavourful, tender, and medium-grind. Not too much evidence of spicing, but the beef itself had good flavour and didn’t need too much complement. The toppings were pretty much the standard burger toppings, but of course you can pick and choose as you like from the default toppings Burger Shoppe puts on their sandwiches. All in all, a tasty snack or light meal on its own.

All in all, I liked my baby burger snack at Burger Shoppe, and since my first experience there almost two years ago I’ve gone back and enjoyed the same thing several times. If you’re in the Queen/Broadview area and looking to grab a meal on the go (or standing at the lunch counter for some quick people-watching), you won’t go wrong at this tiny, tasty shoppe.

Burger Shoppe (2009) – Part 1

Posted in Fast-Food/Sit-in Counter, Gourmet Burgers, Take-out Counter on January 7, 2011 by beefwhisperer

Date: June-23-09

Restaurant Name: Burger Shoppe

Location: 688 Queen St E

Phone: (416) 850-7026

Email: N/A

Web: http://www.burgershoppe.com/

Price Range (Burger): $8-$12

Price Range (Total Meal):$13-$19

Service/Style:Counter

Reservations:Not Required

Short Review: Tasty burger, good beef with juicy flavour. The “garden” style toppings and balsamic reduction added a simultaneously rich and light flavour contrast. Tasty fries, medium cut and crispy.

The Meal

Meat Type: Naturally-raised beef

Patty Weight: 6oz. (estimated)

Cheese Type: Mozzarella

Bun: Toasted, White

Toppings: Portobello Mushroom Cap, Fresh Greens

Garnishes: Balsamic ReductionSides: Fries

Drink: Boylan’s Root Beer

Service: Friendly

Presentation: Metal Basket

The Ratings

Burger: 7.5

Sides: 7.5

Service: 7.0

Atmosphere: 6.5

Overall: 7.4

The Long Story

I’d done this review a while ago, but then got distracted from this blog for about a year and a half. I’m hoping to get back into it and keep people entertained and informed about good new burgers in and around the GTA (as well as wherever else I travel), so to start I’m posting some older reviews that have been sitting on my computer since 2009 – a double-review of Burger Shoppe over on Queen Street East.

First off a little about Burger Shoppe. I tried out Burger Shoppe’s (also known as BQM – Burgershoppe Quality Meats) Riverside location, a lunch counter which was the original location. Since then, a 2nd and 3rd location have opened up near the corner of Ossington and Dundas, and on Queen West, respectively. The 2nd location is a full-size restaurant with a slightly upscale feel, including plentiful and attractive seating as well as a full bar area. The 3rd location is listed as a “diner”, and I don’t know anything else about it. I’m going to make a point of going to both of those locations for another review at some point.

Burger Shoppe on Queen E. is a cozy location with a counter along the outside window where about 6 people could probably stand and eat at the same time (not in a bad way – it’s just a small location), so I was just grabbing take-out this time around, but the location, while tiny, is cute and friendly, and the service is good. As this was near the time Burger Shoppe had first opened, things were a little chaotic with the staff and service, but I’ve since been and it seems like they’ve pretty much figured things out.

For my first time at Burger Shoppe, I decided to try a burger that at the time was called the “Riverdale”, but that I see on the online menu now as the “Ossington”. It’s a standard BQM beef burger with greens, mushrooms, and a balsamic reduction, as well as mozzarella. Sounded like a light but hearty flavour, and since I was also going to be trying out the BQM “baby” burger on this same outing (see next review), I decided, why not?

Beef Nerds: BQM uses locally-sourced, naturally-raised beef for their burgers, so as to be expected, the final product when properly cooked is flavourful and juicy and healthy-tasting. The patties are medium-grind and relatively tightly-packed so retain moisture despite the burgers being relatively well-done (as is the requirement in Ontario). Long story short, Burger Shoppe makes a juicy, fresh-tasting patty. The toppings were also a very nice complement, with the mushroom adding a hearty flavour that nicely countered the light flavour of the balsamic reduction and greens. If I have one criticism of the burger, it’s that the balsamic reduction, while flavourful, did make the green kind of mushy on the burger. If the greens had been a bit crisper, I think the taste would have gone from very good to amazing.BQM makes medium cut, crispy fries which were enjoyable and gave a light crunch.

All in all, I enjoyed Burger Shoppe very much, and having gone back several times now, can say that when you want to stray away from the typical cheeseburger with standard toppings, the “specialty-topping” menu options here offer some really tasty alternatives such as the Ossington I tried this first time. (Mental Note: do a review of the Hawaiian sometime soon too….)

Cheers!

It’s 2011??!? Time to get back into it!

Posted in Uncategorized on January 7, 2011 by beefwhisperer

Happy 2011 everyone!

Well, I guess I totally just let life and work and family and everything else get in the way for a bit, and just plain forgot about blogging. But it’s a new year, and time to get back into it! Hopefully some of you out there will be interested in my new reviews still 🙂

Here come a few old reviews, and I promise some new reviews soon and regularly from now on. Cheers!