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Burger Week - $5 Burger specials at various restaurants in Toronto - The Grid newspaper - may 30 to june 2, 2012

  • y

I saw this posted on RFD, looks like it could be interesting. A bunch of restaurants are featured and will have a $5 burger

The list of participating looks awesome... In addition to places like Burger Bratz, Holy Chuck, etc there is smaller places like Keriwa Cafe,

The week ends in an event at Wychwood Barns on June 3rd.

Details here:

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  1. You are a nicer person than I for publishing this! : )

    1. Thanks for the heads up...been wanting to try Holy Chuck for a while now....Great excuse to stop over....

      1. i don't understand it, though.
        places like Keriwa cafe: they doing the $5 burger for sit-down customers only? might sound like a dumb question, but i'm envisioning them having a separate bbq outside for it.

        1. Anyone try any of the burgers today?

          13 Replies
          1. re: ylsf

            Caplansky's. Its really dry... :-S

            1. re: ylsf

              Stockyards was delicious. They made their own smoked cheddar, but in the style of "American" (kraft singles) so it melted perfectly. They also threw on pickled red onion, which was excellent.

              I'm debating between Holy Chuck, Burger Bar, and Union for lunch tomorrow.

              1. re: ylsf

                Holy Chuck. Still so good. Total steal at $5!

                1. re: jlunar

                  had the holy chuck burger today, had been meaning to try the spot for a long time
                  i mean yeah it's 5 bucks but the burger they picked for their special is lame. it's just some plain ass watery cooked down onions on a double burg. no cheese. mustard and pickles. it was underseasoned and boring. i can see it being a real good burger with some cheese and maybe mustard grilled but plain with plain onions just left me scratching my head

                  1. re: disgusti

                    Thanks for the heads up. I think we may do the $5 burger and another burger off their menu ... We were gonna go try them sometime soon too. Good excuse with Burger Week in place.

                2. re: ylsf

                  Had Hadley's burger last night. The meat was well seasoned, the portion was about half of the regular burger on the menu, and the flavours didn't really work for me. The use of blue cheese did not pair well at all with their marmalade, and I can't say I could taste the bacon.

                  1. re: dlw88

                    I asked for no marmalade. The bacon was excellent - smokey and chewy - but I found the blue cheese overpowering. Great fries! Really crispy, with coarse salt.

                    1. re: OTFOODIE

                      The fries were indeed great, but how many did you receive for the additional $3?

                      1. re: dlw88

                        I didn't count, but the quantity seemed reasonable.

                    2. re: dlw88

                      Giving you a half size burger for a reduced price doesn;t really make it a "special" imho.

                      1. re: terrycar

                        Yeah, wondering if other places are doing "mini" burgers....

                        1. re: ylsf

                          The Depressed Cow at Holy Chuck is the full size -- a full double. Total deal for $5. Note that this burger doesn't come with cheese, though I'm sure you could ask for it.

                        2. re: terrycar

                          The regular burger (8 oz), without the bacon and cheese is regularly $12, $14.50 with cheese and bacon. The Burger Week special is 5 oz and includes the cheese and bacon. I didn't feel ripped off.

                    3. the stockyards rendition was nice -- double patty, lightly pickled red onion, aioli and cheese sort of blending together into a hot mess. a dab of arugula as well. i got it w/a side of fries (a very generous portion), and made for a great lunch for $10, all in. the burger was cooked to medium well (as the menu says is their default)...next time i will ask for medium rare, my preference. forgot this time around.

                      1. I went with a few friends Thursday night around the western block of restaurants.

                        Keriwa Café – if you don’t have reservations, only seating available is at the bar of around 8 seats. It’s booked solid this weekend. Slightly larger than slider size, but overall very good! We liked the crisp char of the bison. Pricey for its size.

                        Barque Smokehouse – was not aware that it was participate at lunch only :(

                        The Beet – great lamb burger with jalapenos. They do their own Dijon (?) mustard and ketchup, but can ask for grainy mustard as well. Slightly small if it’s their full portion at $15

                        Holy Chuck – grabbed their last patties for the night just before they closed. They may have just given us the rest of their cooked onions because they were spilling out of the burger. I would have liked these cooked down more so the burger wasn’t so “wet”, but still as expected from Holy Chuck.

                        Got a Muskoka IPA and dark ale. Both were quite tasty! They come with a commemorative beer mug! Can’t go wrong for $5

                        Anyhow, it’s probably good form to order a few things off their normal menus … whether it be shakes, fries, other apps. But if you’re planning to hit up a few places, it’ll be difficult…. Or artery clogging. Haha!

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: msprnt

                          had the Holy Chuck special today and was a little disappointed. very greasy and a few too many wet onions made for a very messy burger. If you get off on fatty meat this place is for you. Shared a poutine with my dining partner and it was about the worst I've ever eaten - ice cold curds and lukewarm packaged sauce over adequate french fies. gross. I found it odd that they didn't have any info about the burger promotion and I had to awkwardly ask if it was available. won't bother going back.

                          1. re: malpeque

                            I went on the way to the game this afternoon and the sign about burger week was on the door, which is as much as I'd seen at any place participating. Hadleys had no signage. I saw nothing at Barque, Gladstone or Habits Gastropub.

                            My rundown:

                            I might as well start with Holy Chuck: The depressed cow (double hamburger with fried onions, mustard and pickles) was their special. I ordered without the pickles and had I known how much mustard would be on it, I would have asked for the mustard to be cut in half. Overall it was still a fantastically tasty burger. I'm getting seriously addicted to the fattiness of the burgers at HC & BP. [Comment: I do think they overgrind their meat, however, and I saw why. One of the partners was grinding a batch and there were chunks of lean and chucks of fat that were being fed through as different times. On the first pass, sometimes the grind was bright red and other times white. It took two more grinds to get the meat/fat blend homogeneous. I remember, years ago when I was having a whole side butchered, the butcher saying it was important to cut up the fat and lean into smaller pieces so that they could be fed through the grinder together and to never grind more than twice.]

                            Habits: It was interesting and tasty for something without beef: A large cremini mushroom, stuffed with crab and deep fried in tempura. Not really something that gets me excited, but I can see how many would love it. If you avoid red meat, this would be awesome.

                            Gladstone: The burger was very good: A light sesame seed bun with an tasty, burger, cooked medium rare, topped with two of the smallest pieces of bacon I've seen on a burger and yummy white cheddar. As it was medium rare, the meat was juicy, but I would have expected more fatty flavour from short rib, which was what was advertised abd being their offering. Overall it was very good, but I found the atmosphere and service snooty. When I ordered "the burger week special" the server kind of gave me a look as if to say "Another of you riff-raff."

                            My favourite burger of the event was Barque Smokehouse. First their bun was the best I've had holding a burger. It was light enough that it didn't get in the way of the burger, but there was a light crusty that gave away easily to the bite. Additionally, there was a good bread flavour. I'd love to try cold cuts, cheese, or Barque's brisket on one of these buns. The meat was not as fatty as BP/HC yet it was still juicy and had a great smokey flavour. Nit pick: I think the meat was too finely ground. And the toppings put me over the top: Aged cheddar melted over outstanding smoky bacon with mushrooms and moderately spicy mayo! (I skipped the pickles.) This burger was flippin' fantastic!

                            Also, the staff at Barque was friendly and engaging. There was zero up-sale pressure. They asked about how I was enjoying Burger Week, how many other places I had been and how I had enjoyed them. They weren't shy about promoting other places in the BW event either. I look forward to returning to try the brisket, the dry rub baby back ribs, the beef ribs (!) and the smoked wings.

                            Hadley's was probably second in terms of friendliness; they were also friendly and engaging, but the atmosphere was just not as inviting. Holy Chuck was business as usual, which in my experience has been good: Bringing out orders, checking to see if the burger was to your liking, etc.

                            And to me Barque had it right: This is an opportunity to win new clients. Make them feel at home and comfortable so that they want to come back. The Gladstone's Cafe is a very nice room, but their haughty arrogance is off-putting to me. I can't wait to go back to Barque; the Gladstone, eventually, but it's not a priority.

                        2. Who is going to Burger Day tomorrow at the Wychwood Barns... They do not say who is having booths (except for the "Bonus Booths"). Any one know who will be there selling burgers?

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: ParkerQ

                            I am heading out for 11:30 opening.. Anyone else?

                            1. re: ParkerQ

                              Guess no one else went... I showed up at 11:30 and there was already a line up.. all the restaurants that participated in Burger week were there plus a few more. The organisation of the event was a bit of a mess including them running out of food tickets to sell and then going around to the vendors and collecting used tickets to resell again. I think 3 times as many people showed up then what they were expecting which had the unfortunate effect of long waits and many booths runnung out of food by 2:30 even though the event was supposed to end at 4:30. At one point they were still selling entrance tickets and food tickets after 1/3 of the vendors were out of food and the rest were running low. which made for even longer lines at the booths that still had food.

                              Now for the Burgers...

                              The Grindhouse did one of the biggest burgers the "La Vacas Locas" on a cornbread bun... lots of flavours going on and the they also won the prize for the most smoke coming out of their tent..

                              Keriwa Cafe did a great Bison burger and Ontario Gouda on a bannock bun I would tie them as ny favourite with the Gladstone who did a Short Rib Burger house bacon, cheddar & pickled red onions.

                              New York fries added some starch to the day but I wish there were some other options available... Bottled water was free but that was the only drink unless you went to the beer tent where you could get beer or wine.. no pop or juice anywhere to be found..

                              The mystery of the day was "AAA" they were right at the entrance and do not have a restaurant "at the moment" but said they are opening a BBQ place in the St Lawrence Market area by August.. They had a guy with a mullet serving southern pulled pork sliders with a choice of creamy, sweet or spicy slaws.. Their sign was a really cool vintage Mississippi licence plate "AAA 000". The pulled pork with the spicy slaw was amazing.. Has anyone heard of this place opening?

                              1. re: ParkerQ

                                Free water? Where did you see that?

                                For the record, they were selling water (2 tickets) and juice boxes (not sure how much) inside. Also surprised they didn't have other drink options.

                                Were all of the proceeds going to The Stop? I think the organizers totally underestimated the turn out on this one. You would think they would know after all of the demand for food events in the past, and all of the advertising they were doing in their own publications + internet buzz, etc. I over heard the Haggis burger spot saying they were told only to make 200 burgers. Not sure how the money split was working though so don't know if restaurants were making money?

                                I also got there close to the start. They had a bunch of tents around for tickets/wrist bands but it was kind of confusing because it wasn't really a "closed" space and I am not sure who was enforcing the wristband thing. At the start a few extra people were selling wristbands/tickets which helped to speed up the lines but I didn't see them around later.

                                I liked the Keriwa burger too... Was unique. But, they started serving it later as an open face sandwich which made it hard to eat (my friends had it later in the day). I liked the Barque burger best.. Was one of the first ones I had but I really enjoyed them all... My least favourite was the e11even burger.

                                Thanks for the pics, if you have more would be great to see them. In particular looking for a picture of the Yogurt burger.. That was pretty good (frozen yogurt dessert burger with jelled mango as "cheddar cheese" ..

                                1. re: ylsf

                                  Grindhouse was giving water out free as was the booth beside them.. again it could have been a miscommunication because the organizers were providing the water to the booths... maybe they forgot to tell some booths that people needed a ticket for the water!

                                  From what I heard each booth paid $250 to be there and that covered the rentals - tents / bbq / napkins etc... and they could not be getting any money from the tickets as no one was keeping track of which booth was selling how much.. especially when they started reselling the used tickets again...

                                  These type of events are usually a money loss for restaurants but they are great PR and such but they have to pay to be there get not cut of sales and have to pay for their own ingredients and staff...

                                  The wrist band thing was strange.. they should have just sold food tickets it would have been less confusing especially when the food was running low...

                                  As for pictures once the crowd grew it was hard to take pictures of each booths food as I had intended and there were no tables for me to sit and put it down.. sorry..

                                  1. re: ParkerQ

                                    All Restaurants were told to bring 400 sliders. Some brought less some brought more. It was $500 to participate in the event and all proceeds went to The Stop. (My friend was a vendor) All the food was donated by the restaurants as well as the staff.

                          2. Went to Holy Chuck today.....had the Depressed Cow....loved it....the onions just made it taste so much better.....I normally like my burgers with just onions and tomato....so this was a great burger for me....might even get them to skip the mustard and pickle next time.....loved the beef flavor.....very juicy.....service was quick .....went around noon...place was starting to get busy....the promo was not advertised.....I heard the lady after me asking about the promo and the girl at the counter had to point it out to her.....

                            1. Originally, we wanted to go to Keriwa Cafe or Barque Smokehouse but neither were taking reservations and there were long waits.

                              We ended up going to the Drake on Saturday (no reservations either but there was no line) and split the Black-Tie one-pounder burger which came with home-made onion rings. The burger itself was huge (and it was listed as "fit for two") and was "naturally-raised chuck and short-rib with Grand Chevalier, arugula, red onion, and tomatos."

                              I found the onion rings to be really delicious and the burger itself was juicy and tasty, though I did have to remove some of the cheese as I found it a bit overwhelming. (Yes, a bit messy but fun to eat as it was huge!)

                              (The burger was $27.95 with $5 from the sales of each Black Tie burger going to the Stop Community Food Centre.) Worth it in my opinion, especially with proceeds going back to the community.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: bluefirefly

                                I THINK, but maybe wrong, that Keriwa was only doing them at Dinner, and Barque was only doing it at lunch, so it was difficult to do them back-to-back.