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I went to W Burger bar when it first opened on College Street. I thought it was a great burger and I was a very happy customer. About a year or two later a friend of mine went and came back saying he thought it sucked. I couldn’t understand why but I thought today would be a good day to get a second opinion.
I went to the new location on Caledonia Road and having some trouble with the street location I finally found it in the middle of what looked like warehouses but in reality weren’t. I walked in and sat at the bar; W Burger is a sit down burger joint with a rather large menu for a burger place. They have starters, salads, sandwiches and fish. They also have a variety of burgers including beef, Kobe beef, chicken, and lamb and as per usual a variety of toppings such as fried egg, portobello mushrooms and cilantro yoghurt.
I order the usual, a double beef (two 6 oz patties) with ketchup, mustard, tomato, lettuce, onion and pickle, with a coke and fries. The grill guy was out in the open but I was distracted and didn’t see him put the burger on the grill (actually a flattop). It took about 10/15 minutes which is the longest I’ve waited since starting these reviews.
I got the coke first, which came in a frosted coke glass which is always good and keeps the drink nice and cold. Then the burger and fries came. The burger was massive, the fries thin and fresh cut. I dug into the fries first. They were okay. Nothing special. I think they needed to be thicker which would make them better.
Then I tried to squish the burger down so it would fit into my mouth. I couldn’t so I just bit into it as best I could. Now remember I said I thought the burger all those years ago was very good. Well this one wasn’t that good. It wasn’t the worst burger but it also wasn’t very good.
But let’s get the good out of the way first. The onions were crispy red onions that were whole rings and very tasty. And the pickles were yummy, the best part of the burger. The bun was a good size for the patty and had a nice flavour (more to be said about the bun below) and the burger patty was still juicy. That’s about it for the good.
The bad. Where to begin. Let’s start with the patty. It’s a flattop burger like I said, but there was no crust, no burnt edge, nothing. It had the taste of a grilled burger which is kind of weird and it felt rather tough for a flattop burger. Usually a flattop keeps the burger very tender, not here, not by a long shot. After two or three bites I noticed a strange taste which I thought was something other than the patty. I ripped a piece off one of the patties and ate it. I was wrong, the strange taste was the patty. It tasted like something was in the patty that wasn’t beef. Egg maybe? Maybe the lamb or bacon that’s grilled on the flattop along with the burgers? Either way it just wasn’t the greatest taste for a pure beef burger.
Then there were the toppings. The lettuce was chopped but so soft and wilted and the tomato was stringy and tasted old, not like a fresh tomato should. And now back to the bun. It had a good flavour but it just wasn’t soft enough. It wouldn’t crush, it wouldn’t bend to my liking, it was annoying, it wasn’t what I would call a perfect burger bun by any stretch of the imagination.
When I was close to done a new order was taken from a new table and I got to see the patty pulled out of the drawer and placed on the flattop. It wasn’t a fresh red beefy colour, it was brown and looked like it was made a day or two ago which could account for the taste I had experienced. Then I got the bill and after tip (15%–it is a sit down restaurant with servers) it came to $21.50 (rounded).
So it turns out my friend was right, this place just wasn’t that good. Maybe it was better when they first opened but man was I disappointed today. The quality wasn’t there, the taste wasn’t there and it was one of the most expensive burgers I have ever had. For that money it sure as hell wasn’t worth it. There are by far worse burgers out there in Toronto but there are so many better burgers that I can’t really see myself returning here, nor after this experience, would I want to.
Out of 7 W Burger Bar scores 3