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My wife and I were in the Beaches on this cold and rainy afternoon and were in need of some comfort food. Now, with all the great burger bars in the East end and with my own Cumbrae burgers on the Green Egg, I haven’t been in Lick’s in over ten years. Yet, here we were in front of the joint and my recollection was that they were not bad and at least their patties and dogs were tasty and fresh. NOT! The worst food I’ve had in the G.T.A. in many a year. I ordered the Chili Dog, Five bucks and change. The dog was the thinnest I’d ever seen in a commercial joint, not pure beef, undercooked, smothered in a bland chili that tasted like it came out of a can. The bun disintegrated under the weight of too much chili and I had to attempt to eat it with their fine plastic cutlery. Garbage…left it. My wife also had an issue with the disintegrating bun and said the patty was defiantly pre-frozen and tasted like Harvey’s mystery meat. Balloons everywhere and lots of Sunday kids. Chucky Cheese light. Don’t go…unless with a litigious minded lawyer.

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Cumbrae's
481 Church St, Toronto, ON M4Y, CA

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  1. It's not the Lick's that it was back in it's heyday. It's a shell of it it's former self as I remember it in let's say, 1985. Nobody who enjoyed the great burgers that Lick's served 25 years ago is going to set foot in one now. They should change the name to "Suck's".

    1 Reply
    1. re: foodyDudey

      Damn, that's harsh!

    2. I know at least one person that prefers Licks over, let's say, 5 Guys. I remember my first trip to Licks. My wife raved about it. I couldn't understand what she was raving about. Weird texture and flavor that was far distant from ground beef w/ a little s&p.

      4 Replies
      1. re: GoodGravy

        How long ago was your first trip to Lick's? It sound like it was in the last 10 years.

        1. re: foodyDudey

          That's about right, 10-12 years ago. I was unprepared for the singing and the option of sweet chili relish and other things available as toppings. For me, the usual toppings are lettuce, tomato and onion, and they're all served on the side, but that's mostly cuz I order from burger joints and diners, not fast food places.

        2. re: GoodGravy

          oh and the god awful singing they do, its horrible, im embarassed to be standing in that place. I think its time they change their name by the way, they should rename it "Bricks" because that more closely resembles what they pass off as burgers these days...

          1. re: jmarcroyal

            Didn't they stop singing about 1994?

        3. Think it became a chump franchise operation years ago. Gave up on the food as respite from McD's kids' nosh. Even the ice cream sucks now. Avoid at all costs.

          1. I went to the Licks on Yonge in Thornhill a couple of weeks ago. The dry, overdone, tasteless burgers make the Beaches location of Licks seem like a gourmet burger place.

            5 Replies
            1. re: ManAbout

              Whatever machine they have that processes the meat for the patties does strange things to it.

              1. re: abigllama

                How about their frozen burgers. Are these any better?

                1. re: terrycar

                  In the late eighties and early nineties, my friend and I would look forward to the weekend so we could eat at LIcks. The burgers were so good back then!

                  1. re: callitasicit

                    They sure were. And I loved the Guck and the fact you could get sprouts on your burger.
                    Well I bought a pack of the frozen ones(on sale this week at No Frills) and I'll get a pack of sprouts & see how it goes.

                  2. re: terrycar

                    The frozen Lick's branded Nature Burgers at the grocery store are ok. We get them every once in a while, when Mr Vuitton has not had the time to make his own beef patties. We prefer them to frozen, supermarket beef burgers.

                    (in re-rereading this, it sounds very much like a back handed complement)

              2. After havinng a good burger at places like Craft/Burger Priest and even South Street I went back to Licks a few months ago and it tasted so off. I also find the meat texture to be odd and off putting. I don't think I will be back but if I am forced to eat there in the future I will probably try out their chicken burgers (from what I recall they use a chicken breast).

                1 Reply
                1. re: ylsf

                  Licks seems to be one of those operations that becomes a victim of its own success once it starts franchising-Amato is another that springs to mind. Inevitably the quality control starts slipping, they start using inferior ingredients, prices start creeping up and before you know it , all you're left with is your memories of something that was once great but now is just a third rate shadow of itself.

                2. I enjoy their nature burgers. That's the only burger I've ever ordered there, though.

                  1. I have a seven-year-old and I admit that I DO take her to Lick's (Beaches location) from time to time. She likes the burger and the ice cream, despite their reduced quality, and the Nature burger is a decent veggie patty. As a vegetarian, I appreciate that the veggie burger is grilled on a separate grill and handled with separate tongs. I also appreciate that you can get a side of fruit salad with the burger instead of fries--a semi-healthy option that many places don't offer.

                    But yeah, if it wasn't for the daughter, I wouldn't go there. The singing is jarring and the decor is desperately in need of an update. And in winter, the whole place is drafty as hell.

                    1. Something *REALLY* bad has happened to their hamburgers in the last like, month. As I was mentioning in another thread, I wandered into a Lick's for the first time in about a year last week and literally had to throw it out after 2 bites. It had a VERY weird, tough, rubbery consistancy. The patty was noticably thinner but way more compacted or something. And the predominate "spicing" those burgers used to have also seemed to almost be gone.

                      Has anyone eaten here within the last like 2 weeks? Something has gotten really foul at the one here in Brampton at least

                      5 Replies
                      1. re: duckdown

                        Gave up on the Mississauga shop(Eglinton+Hurontario) 4-5 years ago, thanks to greasy, tasteless, turdburgers. Tried their newer smaller shop on Britannia near Mavis for ice cream last summer. Shop was vacant at lunch. Ice cream totally iced-up and old. Staff was stunned and avoidant. Never again.

                        1. re: Kagemusha

                          The Eg&Hwy 10 used to be my go-to location for Licks back in the late 90's til I early 2000's. I used to like the turkey burgers. The owner/manager (big burly guy) ran a pretty tight ship--the place was always busy and very clean, prompt and courteous service. Last time I was at that location in late 2010 its a totally different kind of place..new management/owners not the same level of service or quality of food.

                          1. re: ParsleySage

                            The Danforth location is the WORST!! I honestly don't know how they have managed to take up prime real estate and survive all these years. Totally disgusting.

                            1. re: millygirl

                              Totally agree about Licks.. I thought at first it was me. I was craving a burger
                              last month..got it home..it was grey and the texture was very odd.. I too took a couple of bites and threw it in the garbage.. it was dreadful.. it has definitely changed
                              in last couple of months.

                              1. re: millygirl

                                That Danforth and Pape location has only been open around 5 years, but I've only been once and was totally grossed out. I was at the little shwarma place just 20 seconds north of it 2 weeks ago, and that place is good.

                        2. I went to the Kingston Road location a few months ago. Nothing special, but certainly not disgusting. I remember one of their first stores in Bronte back in the early 80's and it was great.

                          1. So sad, but so true. I was at the very first Lick's when it opened in the Beaches all those years ago - line-ups out the door, fantastic, fresh-tasting burgers, kaisers that had a nice, chewy texture to them. Smash-cut to today and that fine burger is a very distant relative to the inbred creation they're serving now. It's like a picture that's been photocopied onto cheaper paper a billion times until it's barely recognizable. Avoid.