Triple B: Burgers, Bacon & Beer

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Double red chorizo burger…with a pineapple on top!

Now, with all the businesses that have shut down during the pandemic, it’s rare that you hear about a restaurant that closed last year reopening in the middle of all this — but that’s exactly what happened with Harry’s Charbroiled, this legendary Parkdale burger joint. The place shut its doors in October, but reopened in April on Uber Eats, serving up real-deal burgers and fries out of an address on College St.

Now, this is body by burgers, bro, so you KNOW I had to check it out — and when I saw they had a funky red chorizo burger, I made mine a double! This is the Red Burger:

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What I like most about this burger is there’s no veggies whatsoever. You’ve got two charbroiled red chorizo patties, melty Swiss cheese, bacon (which costs $2 extra) and grilled pineapple, shoved between a not-quite-big-enough bun. There’s a nice texture on the pork, some added chew from the bacon, a bit of sweetness from those pineapple chunks, and then the cheese, which really brings it all together. Now, I know that small buns make the sausage patty look bigger, but I *maybe* couldda used a little more bread here…

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On the other hand, I really can’t complain about the size of these spuds. The thick ‘n crunchy fries were nicely salted, and stayed warm and crispy after delivery. Man, normally I would go for some chili cheese fries or loaded tater tots or something, but these plain and simple taters really hit the spot — just like the burger did!

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: It’s a burger made outta lobster, bro!!!!

I know yesterday was National Burger Day — I had like 75 people tag me on Instagram, bro! But for me every day is Burger Day, and that’s why we’re celebrating Friday with a lobster burger from Lobster Burger Bar, this funky joint on King St West. Now, I’ve had some massive lobster rolls before, and even a burger with lobster on top, but a burger made outta lobster? This I gotta see!

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They call this the Halifax Lobster Burger, and it’s waaaay better than those nachos at the Scotiabank Centre, son! You’ve got a five-ounce Atlantic lobster patty, with mozza and white cheddar baked right in, plus lettuce, tomato and a whole lotta mayo. And of course, I paid 3 bucks extra to add bacon — dude, the Number One Rule of Flavourtown is Always Add Bacon!!!!

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Now, when it comes to sides, I couldda gone with fries, or maybe some sweet potato spuds. But when I saw the poutine, you KNOW I had to try it. I was a little disappointed to see the skinny little matchstick fries, but you know what? Even though the curds were kinda melty by the time I dug in, they still had that squeak, and the gravy was the closest thing I’ve had to proper sauce en canne in a while. On the scale of one to redonkuluous, it’s no Poutine Mountain, but for a side dish at a seafood joint, this poutine’s pretty legit!!!

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Hot dog for breakfast? Don’t mind if I do…

Y’know, if there’s one thing I’ve been missing the most during The Great Restaurant Shutdown of 2020, it’s brunch. I mean, I’ve ordered everything from mac ‘n cheese to Pekin duck to go, but I didn’t see any places doing brunch deliveries…not until I came across Ramona’s Kitchen, this funky little joint inside the Annex Food Hall, that’s serving up all three meals of the day — with a special brunch menu on weekends.

Now, we’re not just talking French toast and eggs benny, bro — this place is offering all kinds of funkaliciousness, like a green egg omelette, schnitzel benedict and this sausage party in Flavourtown, the Morning Frankfurter:

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Now, this has gotta be one of the most off-the-hook hot dogs I’ve ever had. You’ve got a thick, all-beef wiener, topped with scrambled eggs, holy guacamole, cheddar cheese slices, cherry tomatoes and some great big strips of bacon, all swimming in a spicy donkey sauce. This dog was super messy, but you know what I say — if it ain’t messy, it ain’t tasty!!!

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Now, I don’t wanna sleep on the fries, either. These fresh-cut taters tasted just like something you’d get from a chip truck, and they were still hot and crispy when I started shoveling them down my piehole, cuz the streets were so quiet on Sunday morning that my order was barely 20 minutes from start to finish, making it the fastest delivery since this whole shutdown started!!!

Man, I know there are so many other funky joints offering takeout and delivery all over this city…but I might hafta order from here again, maybe even before restaurants reopen. That chicken schnitzel benny sounds soooo outta bounds, bro!!!!

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: This burger’s gonna knock me out!

Now, I’ve had some pretty crazy burgers right here on Triple B. We’re talking double, triple, all the way up to six patties, and even some with grilled-cheese sandwich buns, son! So when I heard that Knockout Chicken, this funky, boxing-themed chicken and burger joint in Kensington Market, was serving up a burger so big that it came with extra napkins, so big that they couldn’t even close the takeout box, then you KNOW I had to order it. This is The Greatest:

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Dude, this burger is kinda like when you take a KFC Double Down, and then you double down again. You’ve got two beef patties, two great big pieces of fried chicken, slathered in their sweet ‘n tangy KO sauce, and stuffed between two grilled cheese buns. As you can see, it’s a real fistful of dynamite!!!!

Now, the app said this burger comes with beef bacon, so either there’s a beef bacon shortage going on, or they just forgot to put it on. But with no veggies to be found, it was just round after round of meat connecting straight with my jaw. Chicken was definitely the star of the show, but the beef was pretty good, too. Only problem was that once I got half way through, the sandwich started falling apart — the grilled cheese buns just couldn’t hold everything together. But I wasn’t gonna thrown in the napkin until I went all 15 rounds, bro!!!!

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Man, I already feel like I need a nap. It’s gonna be lights out pretty soon…

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: This burger’s for Rudy, coach!

Now, I was never a walk-on at Notre Dame, but I know a good burger when I see it. And Rudy, which has three locations across the city, all doing takeout and delivery, makes a pretty darn good burger, bro!

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This is the Tattooed Rude Dude combo, and it has barely a speck of athletic ability. You’ve got a bacon double cheeseburger with a side of poutine — all combos should come with poutine, son!!!

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This Rude Dude is griddled for those extra crispy edges, topped with super-melty cheese, tomatoes, lettuce and bacon. Now, the difference between a regular Rude Dude and the Tattooed Rude Dude is the bacon, which costs an extra $2.50. But you KNOW that the first rule of Flavourtown is Always Add Bacon, bro!!!!

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Now, this poutine is soooo next level! The fries are nice and thick, gravy is on point…but what makes it are the cheese curds. I can’t even remember the last time I had poutine with properly squeaky curds — normally, the cheese is all melty by the time it meets my mouth. But these curds squeaked so hard, they sacked the quarterback, son! No wonder Toronto Life calls it the best poutine in the city

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: BBQ platter for two (but really just for one…)

Dude, I’ve been wanting to check out Meat & Pie Co., this funky halal BBQ joint that’s serving up two of my favourite things — meat AND pie — down on King St, where the Lone Star Grill used to be, for a little while now. Of course, they’ve been closed due to COVID-19…but on weekends, they’re doing free delivery on orders of 50 dollars or more.

Now, it’s not hard to spend 50 bucks on BBQ ’round these parts — a couple meats, a couple sides, and you’re usually set. I wanted to try a few of the best things they had to offer, so I ordered the 2 Person Platter. But the thing is, due to social distancing, there’s only one of me to eat it…

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Dude, this was so much food that I had to put it out on a cutting board, cuz I didn’t have a big enough plate! You’ve got a smoked half chicken with Tandoori seasoning, two big, thick slices of brisket — one on the leaner side, the other more medium — two pieces of jalapeno cheddar cornbread, a tin of mac ‘n cheese, a side of pickles and two little containers of BBQ sauce…and did I mention there’s pie for dessert???

OK, now let’s break it down…

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Now, the brisket wasn’t quite fork-tender — the leaner piece was more like eating steak — but it still had a nice, smoky flavour, good texture and a nice chew. It goes great with the crunch of the pickle, and while I don’t normally like sauce on BBQ, the tangy, smoky sauce on the side was pretty darn good for dipping!

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But the real star of the show has gotta be that smoked Tandoori chicken. Bird’s nice and moist, with just a bit of a kick… I could eat that all day, son!!!

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Mac ‘n cheese was nice and creamy, with a good breadcrumb crust — although it didn’t stay as warm as the meat did. And the cornbread was everything you’d expect, with little chunks of jalapenos and cheese…I can’t complain at all.

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Of course, because the name of the blog isn’t Burgers, Bacon & Unsweetened Tea, we had to wash this all down with an ice cold beer. This here’s a Firefly, a red currant habanero coconut gose from Half Hours on Earth, this craft brewery in the small town of Seaforth, ON…about an hour west of Kitchener. Now, the last habanero beer I had was pretty spicy, but that’s not the case here; if anything, I get more red currants, along with the slightly sour taste of the gose, which goes quite well with the heavy meat platter — and you KNOW I polished it all off, bro!!!!

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Aaaaand after clearing the table, I’ve still got room for dessert…

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This homemade apple pie was absolutely delectable! You’ve got a ton of apples in here, with some cinnamon, sugar, and a nice crunchy crust. And it’s about the right size after such a big meal — I probably couldn’t have eaten any more pie if I wanted to, bro! This also goes well with a nice glass of wine…

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…except that’s not wine, it’s another beer, bro! This Delirious Night sour DIPA, also from Half Hours on Earth, is brewed with Pinot Noir grape juice, Madagascar vanilla and milk sugar. It smells like a whole barrel full of hops, and is surprisingly strong, at 7%. I actually got both of these beers delivered from The Rosedale Diner, which makes this a delivery double down in Flavourtown!!!!

 

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Aloette Burger to go, bro!!!

So, it’s come down to this. With sit-down restaurants still shut down all over this province, we’re scrolling now, looking for Toronto’s best meals on wheels — that means takeout and delivery, bro! And we’re kicking it off with the legendary burger from Aloette, one of the toughest tables in town…

Not to be confused with Alo, the award-winning, fancy-schmancy restaurant upstairs, Aloette is a funky little joint serving up fresh takes on comfort food classics. They also don’t take reservations, making it about as hard to get a table as the fancy-schmancy restaurant upstairs. So, when I saw they were delivering through Uber Eats, I was all over that like a coureur de bois on a canoe, bro-sieur!!!!

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OK, now let’s break it down. This juicy, beefy patty is cooked to a nice medium, topped with a bit of lettuce and a whole lotta mayo. But what makes it is the beaufort cheese, adding that extra richness in almost every bite. Bun was a little soggy, but with beef this good, you don’t complain about the bun, son…

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What’s even more crucial is that the fries stayed crispy — there’s no soggy spuds in this box, bro! Overall, they say this is one of the best new burgers in Toronto, and it did not disappoint!!!

20 BEERS BETTER THAN CORONA: 20. Dos Equis

So, it’s come down to this. 20 days into Ontario’s restaurant and bar shutdown, with no end in site. Is it gonna be May before you cash me outside, or are we stuck in here until July? Either way, I know when this is over, I’m gonna need a beer — or 20, bro!!!!

20. Dos Equis

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I don’t always drink Mexican beer, but when I do…I’ll take Dos Equis over Corona any day of the week! The ol’ Double-X helped me wash down a carne asada burrito with carne asada fries at The Taco Stand when I was in Miami last year!!!

Get the full story here.

 

20 BEERS BETTER THAN CORONA: 19. Menabrea Bionda

Y’know, I kinda blame Italy for getting us into this mess. When the Coronavirus came, they did nothing — and now their hospitals are overloaded, they’ve got the highest COVID-19 death rate in the world, and every other country is in lockdown, too. But even if I wouldn’t wanna visit Italy anytime soon…I’d still chug this Italian beer before taking a single sip of Corona.

19. Menabrea Bionda

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You know those European beers that all kinda taste the same, whether they’re from Poland, Portugal or Greece? This is also one of those beers. It’s tastier than, say, Molson Canadian, but you don’t remember much about it the next day. It does go pretty good with pizza, though — and I ain’t talkin’ bout Delissio, bro!

Get the full story here.

20 BEERS BETTER THAN CORONA: 18. Dead Rise Old Bay Gose

Now, this has gotta be one of the crazy, zaniest, what-the-funk-where-they-thinking beers I’ve ever chugged — I’m glad I didn’t drink more than a sample cup! But you know what? I’d still rather drink this beer than Corona, which just shut down production today due to Coronavirus. It’s like raiiiiin on yer wedding day, Alanis Bro-risette!!!

18. Dead Rise Old Bay Gose

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Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed my tour of Flying Dog Brewery in Frederick, Maryland last summer. I got to see where all the magic happens, then, at the end, there was a free flight waiting for me in the tap room! Now, I actually like a lot of their beers — Doggie Style, Raging Bitch, Brut Reynolds IPA…but when I tried the Dead Rise Old Bay Gose, I got a little bit more than I bargained for!

Y’see in Maryland, they put Old Bay on everything — crab cakes, crab dip, crab fries…I even had it on chicken wings. But brewing a beer with Old Bay seasoning in it, where you actually taste the saltiness, was no bueno, bro! Next time, I think I’ll stick with their Ain’t Nothing But a G Thang hazy IPA!!!!!

Get the full story here.

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