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Blue Goose at the Harbourfront -- seriously outstanding hamburgers

Since no one is talking about this yet, I guess I'll have to be the one to get it started. I just had the burger at Blue Goose -- based out of a repurposed shipping container at Harbourfront Centre -- and it is quite possibly the best hamburger I've ever had in my entire life. And I don't make that claim lightly.

I don't normally link to my blog here, because I don't want to be that guy, but I just wrote the place up and it seems apropos:


The Coles Notes version: it's an absolutely outstanding griddled hamburger. Juicy, beefy, and amazing. I'm still kind of in shock over how good it was, honestly. If you like burgers at all it is a must.

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  1. Hmm I'm over burgers atm, but looks like all 3 places have the same owners, maybe I'll wander down for a lobster roll:

    1. Thank you for sharing your blog! It is utterly amazing, and I have pinned it to my burger board on Pinterest. Keep up the good work!!

      1. Thanks! I just learned the name of this place recently because they were at sponsor at a The Stop event . I usually spend a lot of time down at Harbourfront over the summer but I haven't been down this year (largely in part because I have wanted to avoid the construction!). Looking forward to checking out the food shipping containers down there.

        1. Thanks for sharing. I just had a burger there as well here is my input
          Since this place was quite close I decided to pay a visit I am not a burger aficionado by any means but I think I can tell when I have had a good one.

          The meat was a fresh dollop of ground beef (all organic and hormone free) and is cooked medium rare when I had it. A flat hot surface is used to cook the meat so the all important fat in the ground beef has nowhere to go. The bun is decent. Condiments were your regular offerings with the caramelized onions being the standout. The burger is seasoned on the mild side and lends to bringing out the umami flavor one craves from meat. Folks this is a great value proposition and will even give even the higher priced places a run for their money for a burger.
          Ding ding ding ding 4 stars!

          1. The location for the stalls is wrong in your blog entry. You can deduce the location from the photos though.

            Whoever placed the stalls at the site could barely have done a worse job.

            The food stalls are just near the side road west of Queen's Quay Terminal - in front (north) of the Enwave Theatre - not at Harbourfront Centre. The stalls are hidden behind the stairwell entrance to the underground parking lot and they are angled away from the sidewalk.

            The construction tape along the side road means most people will try walking to the stalls from the sidewalk.

            I told one of the workers at the stall that they need to put a sign near the sidewalk pointing towards the stalls. You can't see them if you're walking west unless you happen to look over your shoulder at just the right moment.

            I've attached a pic cropped from Bing Maps which shows the location.

            Now to the food portion of the comment...
            Bun was kinda dry, wasn't as soft as BP or HC, thought it might have been stale but decided it was just the height of the bun competing with the burger patty, my burger wasn't very juicy - i'd say it was well done. i'll give them another try before moving on to the other stalls.

            1. Tried the burger today - I thought it was good, but not great. Tasty, but definitely not the best burger I've ever had.

              As someone above noted, the caramelized onions were the standout topping and the burger had a relatively good beefy taste, but it was a bit overcooked for my liking (definitely not medium rare...I'd say well done), although it definitely wasn't dry. Rest of the toppings were fresh and tasty, although nothing too exciting. I think the meat needed more seasoning.

              It's a bit of a walk for me down there for lunch so I probably wouldn't do it again soon, but if I was in the area and felt like a burger I can't think of anywhere else I'd go first.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Strongbad789

                Oh OK mine was medium rare (see the pic). For the price they charge I think its a very good deal. Given a dearth of any decent places on the harbourfront this is a welcome relief.

              2. Well I had this burger again over the weekend, and it was just as good as the first time. I went with someone else -- no burger slouch herself -- and she concurred that it was quite possibly the best burger she's ever had. It's the real deal.

                It was, like the first time, a perfect medium rare -- in fact they even asked if we were okay with medium rare, so that's clearly what they're shooting for. So I'm guessing Strongbad just got unlucky with the well done burger.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Michael N

                  Tried the burger again today and the guy asked me if medium was okay - the previous times they didn't ask how I liked my burger. No idea why he said medium instead of medium rare.

                  The carmelized onions overwhelm the taste of the cheese and the burger patty. The burger was better than the previous times I had the burger but still not at the BP/HC level.

                2. Was down at Harbourfront a few times this weekend. My friend had a burger yesterday and enjoyed it. I had one today. It was good for sure. I think they need to get down their order system though... I had asked for no caramelized onions but mine came with caramelized onions. I pointed it out to the girl just for the sake of them knowing but told them I would just eat it as it was (didn't want to wait for them to re-do it). I think I prefer the BP burger between the two but would definitely get it again if I was in the area and looking for food.

                  The Lobster Roll place sold out of lobster today. All three vendors (all owned by Blue Goose) seemed pretty busy.

                  Just a heads up that it is located just to the west of the new Lavazza cafe on Queens Quay... Probably mentioned somewhere in this thread but the emergency exit for the parking garage or some other concrete structure kind of blocks the 3 cargo containers/restaurants.

                  1. Went here yesterday and skipped the burger in favor of the 3 banh mi tacos for $9. It was a solidly ok taste experience. They use one tortilla instead of two, the pork is grilled, there's no pate, the pickled veggies isn't what you'd normally find on a banh mi, and there's a combo hoisin sauce and something spicy thrown in. It's more like a fusion taco made by someone that didn't grow up on either tacos or banh mi.

                    1. The setup has changed for 2014. Instead of each of th three shipping containers offering different foods, now there's one container specifically for ordering and the other two containers prepare/cook the food and a "runner" who delivers/hands you the food.

                      Lobster rolls and sausages are gone from the menu. Burgers are still there.

                      See http://instagram.com/commongoodsto for daily specials and shorter hours of operation compared to last summer (specifically http://instagram.com/p/ogdbZMRQxN/ Mon-Wed: 11:30-16:00, Thu-Sun: 11:30-18:00).

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: mstestzzz002

                        I think you can buy their sausages at Loblaws.

                        1. re: ggom1

                          Sobeys sells Blue Goose products as well. Haven't been back since last year to try the burger but will revisit soon for sure.
                          The new timings are a bummer but heck Iive a stone's throw away so am not too concerned.

                        2. re: mstestzzz002

                          THat set up sounds much better.

                          Will definitely grab some food down there when down again but the construction mess is really making me avoid an area that I normally would check out often (i.e. not even talking about the Gardiner stuff... just the local area).

                          1. re: mstestzzz002

                            There timings are off BTW. I went in today and they were closed at 330. What the heck with no phone how is one supposed to know when to visit.
                            All is not lost though as ended up picking a decent steak to grill at home.

                          2. Has anyone tried the lobster?