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Nov 24, 2009 12:59 PM

W Burger Bar, Yonge & College

My husband and I recently tried out W Burger Bar, which is on College west of Yonge, just east of Fran's. It's refreshing to find a burger restaurant that offers table service; somehow, lining up at a counter just doesn't do it for me. And I really enjoyed most of what we ordered.

We had the bison burger and the lamb burger, both ordered "pink" (I used to be a fan of medium-rare burgers until I realized there's usually more flavour and juiciness when they're done to medium). While not as pink as we'd have liked, they were nonetheless juicy and had great flavour. They give you the option of having your burgers done on the grill or on the flat-top; we had the bison on the flat-top and the lamb on the grill. The buns are made in-house, with a choice of white or whole wheat; we chose the whole wheat and found them to be tasty and to hold up nicely until the last bite.

Another thing I like about this place is that most of the toppings, no matter how many you order, are free. We also ordered poutine and onion rings, as well as a side of chili. Both the fries and onion rings are home-made, with the onion rings thick-cut and breaded with panko. (I much prefer breaded to battered onion rings.) The gravy on the poutine brought back memories of apres-ski noshes in the Laurentians years ago, and the cheese curds were plentiful. And the chili was actually decent and provided quite a kick.

I also ordered a chocolate milkshake, which was the only disappointment in that it was a bit too sweet and not chocolatey enough; maybe I should have ordered it spiked. My husband had a Maudite, on tap.

The service could be improved upon, but it wasn't too bad. Not crazy about the servers' outfits. I do like that the TVs are not totally in your face and distracting. Anyone else been? I know Amy Pataki has, but I take what she has to say about food with a grain of salt. Literally...I don't think she really knows -- or appreciates -- food. A thumbs up for another burger joint's McCain's onions rings? Please!

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  1. I tried this place last night when I needed a timeout from dress shopping, sad but true.

    The host was sitting at the bar when I walked in. I wasn’t sure if he was a patron or a worker but he promptly got up when he noticed me.

    The place was about 1/3 full. There were a few other solo diners but most were two tops or four tops.

    When the host sat me at a table near that back (after offering the bar, which I appreciated but didn’t want) he immediately gave me a menu and their equivalent of a bread basket; carrots and celery sticks with ranch dressing.

    I opted for the turkey burger on a white bun. For toppings I added, sautéed onions, jalapenos peppers, garlic mayo, bbq sauce and jack cheese. I also got a side of 50/50 sweet potato and regular fries.

    The burger was tasty and juicy. There was a discernable turkey flavour with a hint of their in-house spice rub/coating. The topping were tasty but the bbq sauce was something similar to what you’d get from a plastic squeeze bottle at a cheap picnic or outdoor event. While I’m sure it would be for kids who want to dip nuggets or chicken fingers into something sweet and red, for a so-called gourmet burger place it was rather out of place.

    The fries overall were meh. Kind of hot, kind of crisp but lacking in any real flavour, including salt.

    Now onto the servers (the women’s) uniforms - WTF? I mean really? Should a servers skirt be so very short that I can see the bottom of the control top panty built into her stockings? Should I clearly be able to see the outline of her bra under her shirt? Really truly not necessary!

    Overall the burger was a solid 7.5 our of 10. The fries I would waste the calories on again and b/c I found the servers uniforms so distasteful, I’m not sure I’ll bother going back unless I just happen to be in the hood and craving a decent turkey burger.

    1 Reply
    1. re: JennaBean

      Never heard of this place. I'll be downtown tomorrow so I will check it out. Love trying a new burger and the price is quite reasonable from their website. I don't think I'll mind the waitress uniforms.

    2. Hubby and I went there for the first time two Sundays ago, its a very attractive looking place, clean lines, approachable and modern. And if you live in the area, you know there is not much choices for decent lunch on a sunday afternoon.

      I appreciated the platter of veg crudite once we sit down, menu is simple, price reasonable with the unlimited toppings you can choose.

      We ordered just a regular burger medium on a lettuce, with wasabi mayo and jalapeno and Bison burger, and chillie poutine to share

      When we placed the order, other three tables were already served, they only had to prepare ours, as the kitchen is an open kitchen concept, you could see clearly that they were very hesitant with the order. Maybe new staffs??

      My burger on a lettuce4:

      Honestly, tasted like Taco Bell meat, dry and smelly. Lettuce was not fresh either.

      Bison Burger,
      Moisted, but the bread was cold and hard.

      Poutine, it was fair.

      I completely agree, with the uniforms!!! what? v neck super thin cotton pink shirts where you can see the wires of their bra with a short black mini skirt? I felt bad for the staffs that have to wear that, I will be super conscious all the time.

      Bill came out around $50 dollars with two tap beer and a soft drink.

      Will I go back? Only if i am dragged, and i am going to only order poutine and a soft drink

      1. I really enjoyed it and have been going back regularly for a month now. My favorite item on the menu is the beef burger with the suggested toppings (chili, sour cream and swiss cheese although I often substitute monterey jack). It reminds me of chili burgers I had when I was younger.... delicious, nice and pink in the middle and with some kick.

        The onion rings are the best I've ever had in the city! I was told they're made to order and it tastes like it. The Panko breading is light and crispy. The fries are meh.

        The chicken tenders which use the same breading are pretty good and the boozy milkshakes make me wish I wasn't so sensitive to dairy.

        The service can be up and down but I always sit at the bar anyways.

        1. FYI, today's Wag Jag features this thread and a 3.85 Burger+drink combo.

          Not a bad deal!

          5 Replies
          1. re: jlunar

            jlunar...thanks for the WagJag notice. I just purchased one myself. Looking forward to sample the burgers at W Burger Bar.

            1. re: jlunar

              The W burger bar burger is alright for event its normal price.

              I don't know anywhere else that you can get a hormone and antibiotic free burger, of its size for 6 bucks.

              I'm not accounting for flavour though.

              1. re: jlunar

                Thanks for that WagJag link. I signed up. Looks great.

                1. re: jlunar

                  Hi jlunar. Thanks for the tip! I might have to try this place out - what a good price. Have you ever used this Wag Jag service before?

                  1. re: Yum2MyTum

                    I totally haven't, so.. YMMV...! It's been around slightly less than and while I've bought from the latter, I haven't redeemed yet.

           -- food. is. love.

                2. Went here last Saturday around 7 and the place was packed with people waiting at times. Very large room so looks like they're doing well. It was mostly a yonger crowd that was slurping down the $9 pitchers of Pabst.

                  There's a lot of really good deals here that happen after 7PM. One was two sliders and fries for $5, I was in the mood for sliders so got that. Was able to chili cheese my fries and sliders are dressed as requested. They were slightly overcooked but the meat was still flavourful. The chili is outstanding with a spicy kick and made for excellent chili fries.

                  Hubby got the beef burger and really enjoyed it, with a side of onion rings. The rings are really outstanding. Panko breading beats the usual batter as it seems to cling to the onion better. The were very crispy and no greasy slide offs that can occur with a battered ring.

                  Burgers were decent, sides were excellent and drinks were reasonable so we'd gladly go back. Due to rush didn't get a chance to try the spiked milkshakes that apparently contain 3oz of booze each. Will check it out next time. Service was really quick and attentive despite the place being jammed.

                  3 Replies
                    1. re: grandgourmand

                      $9 for a pitcher of PBR? They used to be a buck a can at the finest dives along the Brooklyn waterfront before it became trendy amongst the hipster crowd. Anyways, I like the sound of lamb burger so I'm gonna add this place to the list of places to try.

                      1. re: grandgourmand

                        Promise it's not a typo! Actually it's $8.95 and you get frosted pilsners with it. Ice cold PBR is decent but that after taste pops up as it warms so drink it fast.