Triple B: Burgers, Bacon & Beer

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: 50% off Bacon Cheddar Burger!

Now, we’re all about value here on Triple B, so when I found out that Earls was dishing out half-price burgers on Skip the Dishes, I was all over that like Jason Lee’s mustache! Now, for nine bucks, you could get a Bigger Better Burger with fries, but for just a dollar more, you can upgrade to their Bacon Cheddar Burger. That’s about the easiest dollar I’ve ever spent, son!!!

Now, there’s definitely no shortage of bacon strips on this bad boy, and they cook ’em till they’re nice ‘n crunchy, just the way I like it. Combined with other classic toppings — lettuce, tomato, onions, pickles, mustard and mayo — on a lightly toasted bun, and that’s some pretty good eatin’ for 10 bucks, bro!!!

Fries were about the same size as McDonald’s, but not as crispy or as salty. Came with a double pack of ketchup — dude, Double Pack of Ketchup was my nickname in Lunch Lady Land — but I still needed a couple more packs of ketchup to finish ’em off. Let’s just say that after 13 months of takeout, I’ve got a whole fridge fulla ketchup, bro!!!

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: This really nice burger needs some really big rings!!!

Now that Toronto is into State of Emergency No. 3 like a bad Lou Bega number, let’s just say I’m not getting a lot of exercise these days. So when I saw that The Irv, this funky little joint in Cabbagetown, was serving up a Dad Bod Burger, I was all over that like a fat dad on a Smartie, son!!!

These are a few of my favourite things, right here. You’ve got blue cheese, bacon strips, caramelized onions and a whisky-glazed BBQ sauce, all on top of a thick, juicy patty. This burger is sooo outta bounds, it almost held a gathering of more than 10 people, bro!!!

The only thing that brings it down a bit is the thin, weak bun that was completely soggy by the time I opened the box. So instead of a 10/10, it’s maybe like a 9…

Now, when I saw you could upgrade from fries to house-cut onion rings for just two dollars more, I was all over that like a fat dad in a Speedo, bro! And man, these were like, seriously, some of the best onion rings in Toronto. They give you about a full onion’s worth, with a thick, doughy batter that really kicks things up a notch! I mean, like there are 3-4 bites of onion ring for every bite of burger in this takeout box…not that I’m complaining!!!

Man, the last time I had rings this good was in Buffalo…but who knows when I’ll even be allowed to go to Buffalo again, bro??? 😦 😦 😦

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Dirty Deeds… Done. With. Beef.

Now, whenever I get 30% or 40% off with Uber Eats, I’m looking for something that looks good…but I don’t really wanna pay as much as they’re charging for it (especially since Uber pays the difference). Case in point: The Dirty Double, a $32 bacon double cheeseburger from Stout Irish Pub. Now, they’re packing a pair of 8 oz patties on this thing, so you definitely get your money’s worth — but if I can take 14 dollars off, that works out even better!

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Sometimes a burger doesn’t have to be fancy, as long as it’s tasty. You won’t see any pulled pork, potato chips or mac ‘n cheese on top of this big boy — but with two thick ‘n juicy patties, a nice chew from the bacon, bit of crunch from the pickles and onions, and some oozy, schmoozy cheese, that’s all you really need!!!

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And if you want another great deal, get the Chipotle Bacon Cheese Fries. This $18 item can be added as a side for just 3 bucks when you buy a burger, bro! Now, poutine might be more popular — especially up here in Canada, eh? — but when you got a nice pub fry with a melted cheese blend, some green onions and a pretty decent amount of bacon bits, that right there is the winning ticket! Plus, unlike some other places (I’m looking at you, Tragically Maple Poutine), the amount of chipotle sauce on top adds just enough flavour without taking away from everything else.

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Now, speaking of stout, this burger pairs nicely with Unify or Die, a hearty spiced stout from Blood Brothers Brewing. I first pounded one of these bad boys with a very nice steak dinner from Jacobs (RIP), but its message definitely still applies now that we’ve been dealing with this thing for over a year. Dude, if someone comes out with a Vaccinate and Party beer in 2021, I would slam the shit outta that, son!!!!!!!

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: This Shillelagh Burger is like St. Patty’s Day on a bun!!!

Last year, Toronto went into the first COVID lockdown just a couple days before St. Patrick’s Day, where I remember drinking beers (not even Guinness!) and eating some takeout corned beef and cabbage at home, then maybe watching Contagion with Matt Damon on TV. I didn’t even blog about this, but I think it’s on my Instagram page, if you go back far enough. Now, one year later, we’re celebrating another St. Patty’s in lockdown, which totally guzzles leprechaun farts, bro!!!!!!!!

If there’s any pot of gold at the end of this rainbow, though, it’s that a few local Irish pubs have stepped up their St. Patrick’s Day takeout and delivery game for 2021. Like the Brazen Head, this funky little joint in Liberty Village, that’s offering up a sammich special that’s about to go all Riverdance on my taste buds… This is the Shillelagh Burger!!!

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What we’ve got here is a 6-ounce patty, topped with corned beef AND cabbage, along with lettuce, tomato and onions, oozing with Thousand Islands dressing, all on a pretzel bun, son! Now, I gotta say, Liberty Village is about 4 km away, and my delivery arrived even later than the latest predicted time (Uber didn’t even give me no refund, son!), which means the bun was soggy, the fries were cold and the sauce was all over the bottom of the box. But even in these less-than-ideal conditions, this was still a pretty tasty burger, nice ‘n thick, with just a bit of pink in the middle. I’m sure it would have been a lot better in-person (Kiss me blarney stone, Doug!), but hey, at least I got to have a proper pint of Guinness…

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…even if I had to pour it myself! Speaking of which, the Brazen Head also delivers a four-pack of Guinness, Harp Lager, or two of each for $14 — which means I’ll probably be drinking at least four beers tonight. 😉

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: 6 Degrees of Kevin Bacon Burger, bro!!!

Now, The Works Craft Burgers & Beer has been bringing the beef since 2001 — it’s also where I slayed a (double) Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Burger in 2016, so I know they know what’s up! They’re still dealing out some wild and crazy burgs with names like Obi-Wan Kobe’s Man Cave, Gettin’ Piggy With It and Elk on a Beech, but when I saw the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon burger, you KNOW I’m gonna kick off my Sunday shoes, bro!!!!!!!

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This massively meaty monstrosity is packing back bacon, smoked bacon, maple bacon, and even bacon sticks — which are kinda like Hickory Sticks‘ porkier cousins — on top a slab of well-cooked beef. It comes with lettuce and tomato, but you can also add extra toppings from a list that’s like as long as the menu at The Cheesecake Factory! So I went with pickles (which were free), an onion ring and some Kraft Dinner (each a dollar extra). Also, in a nod to the last time I ate at The Cheesecake Factory, I paid two dollars more for a cheese-stuffed patty…although I don’t see any cheese inside, bro???

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Dude, this burger’s so outta bounds, it’s gotta quarantine for two weeks when it gets back! I mean, if you like the taste of meat on top of meat, on top of meat, then this is the sandwich for you. Just a little crunch from the lettuce and pickles, but the onion ring kinda gets lost here. And about half the bacon sticks and the KD ended up in the container… Good thing I brought a fork, bro!

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Now, this place also lets you pick from 12 different sides, so I went with the Tragically Maple Poutine, which is topped with maple bacon, more of those bacon sticks, and then completely drenched in bacon garlic donkey sauce. So much sauce that you can’t even taste the curds ‘n gravy, which makes this dish about as tragic as its name suggests.

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Man, even though The Works Craft Burgers & Beer has got beer right in its name, they don’t actually deliver the booze — you can get it for pickup through their website, though. So instead, I reached into the fridge for this renegade of funkalicousness, Autopop (you don’t stop!), a session sour with cherry cola from Blood Brothers. And I gotta say, when you lift the glass to your mouth, you can really smell the Cherry Coke. But in the taste department, it’s much more sour beer than soda pop…not that there’s anything wrong with that.

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Greek burger with Greek poutine

Before the pandemic, I’d sometimes head down to Alexandros on Queen’s Quay for some quick and easy Greek food. It was mostly a takeout spot, although they did have a small front patio that was right on the lake, which wasn’t a bad place to sit in the summertime. So when I found out they had another location downtown on Church Street, you know I had to check it out. Only, instead of ordering a Greek classic like gyros or souvlaki, I went with more of a mashup with this Greek burger and a side of Greek poutine.

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Now, the burger patty had the taste and texture of a frozen burger from like M&M Meat Shop, but then they added Greek toppings like tomatoes, onions, tzatziki and feta cheese, and served it all in a really big bun. I gotta say, the flavour combo works. I mean, it’s like having a gyro, but instead it’s a burger. So I can go for that…

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Now, I have had Greek fries before on the Danforth, and maybe somewhere else, like W Burger Bar or something. But Alexandros is kicking it up a notch with this Greek poutine. You’ve got fries, a classic poutine-style gravy… but with feta instead of cheese curds. Now this gravy was actually more authentic than a lot of the poutines I’ve had in Toronto, and the saltiness of the feta didn’t seem outta place, but the problem was with the fries. They either didn’t cook ’em long enough or hot enough, cuz they were soft, and not crispy. A nice, crispy fry couldda tied this thing together, but now they’re making me wish I ordered a Greek salad — and that’s a crying shame in Flavourtown, bro!!!!!

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TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Double bacon burger with foie gras on top!

It was a sad day in Flavourtown when the Holy Chuck burger joint at Yonge and Wellesley, where I once took down a double-triple cheeseburger, announced it was shutting down on New Year’s Eve. And this wasn’t even due to COVID, but rather thanks to redevelopment, which probably means they’re putting up a fancy condo or something. At least the OG location at Yonge and St. Clair is still serving up some redonkulous burgers, fries and shakes…even if it takes a little longer to get them down my piehole.

So when I heard about this funky new culinary creation, topped with foie gras, maple bacon and truffle oil, you KNOW I had to make mine a double. Say hello to The Holy Duck, bro!!!

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Now, this burger is taking me straight down to Downtown Flavourtown, son! These aged beef patties taste more like steak, cooked medium with a little pink in the middle. You’ve got the richness of the foie gras, a nice little chew from the bacon, and the aroma of truffle oil oozing all over the place. 10 on 10 would eat again! I just wish they couldda made the bacon a little more crispy, like they do on their Bacon, Fudge & Sea Salt Milkshake…

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Now, the good thing about a milkshake delivery in January is you know it’s not gonna melt, bro! This creamy McDreamy had nice little pieces of fudge, and was topped with perfectly crispy bacon. If I was more thoughtful and less hungry, I wouldda broken down the bacon into little bits before going at ‘er…but even still, that ice-cream-dipped bacon was sooo outta bounds!!!

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Now, this order took almost an hour to get here — and it was over 30 minutes in transit, since Uber sent the driver to finish another delivery that was several blocks out of the way. And if there’s one thing that suffered as a result, it was the Italian white truffle fries, which were a slightly soggy glob of potatoes by the time I got ’em. They still tasted pretty good, what with the truffle oil, truffle mayo and the Greek kefalotyri cheese…but the extra time left sitting out definitely did ’em no favours.

Of course, I probably wouldn’t have this problem if I could still order from Yonge & Wellesley, which is much closer to home…but I’m sure the developer will use that space to create some much-needed affordable housing for residents of the area. Yeah, when monkeys fly outta my butt, bro!!! 😆 😆 😆

 

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Double pierogi burger with a side of pierogi poutine!

Now, I’ve had some funky pierogis in my day, but when I heard that Burgers n’ Fries Forever, this cool little joint on John St, was serving up a pierogi burger AND pierogi poutine — for a limited time only — you KNOW I was all over that like cheese in potato, bro! And when it comes to the burger, you know I gotta make mine a double…

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Now, there ain’t actually any pierogis on this burger — instead, it’s more of a deconstructed pierogi, with mashed potatoes, onions, cheddar cheese and a whole helluva lotta sour cream. Like half the sour cream ended up on my hand, bro! I also paid a couple bucks extra to add beef bacon (the only kind of bacon they had) cuz the First Rule of Flavourtown is Always Add Bacon!

Now, meat and potatoes is a classic combo, so there’s nothing wrong with that at all, but I think if this burger had more mash, and less sour cream, it would make for a better pierogi-eating experience.

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Speaking of pierogi-eating, this pierogi poutine really kicks it up a notch! They replace the fries with these little mini cheese pierogis, which are melt-in-your-mouth goodness. And then they add gravy, cheddar cheese, beef bacon, green onions and a whole boatload of sour cream. Again, the flavour distribution could maybe be a bit better (maybe things got moved around in the delivery process), but when you get a bite with that pierogi, some cheese, bacon and just a bit of sour cream, that is the real deal, right there!!!!

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Who needs a BLT when you can have a PLT, bro?

Now, back when I lived in The Annex, I knew that Insomnia was the place to go for brunch, and even during Second Lockdown, they open for takeout at 9 a.m. so you can get your brunch on. This place is serving up legit dishes like Challah French toast, huevos rancheros and off-the-hook chicken and waffles, but when I saw the General PLT, I was all over that like Run DMC on a Sucka MC, son!!!!

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OK, now let’s break it down. You’ve got not one, but two slices of peameal bacon on a milk bun, topped with a fried egg, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato and a garlic donkey sauce — it’s like a five-star breakfast in Flavourtown! Plus it comes with a side of homefries and a salad…for some reason.

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These fried potaters are smothered in their Legendary Sauce, which is sorta like a house-made ketchup. Plus, I paid a dollar more to add bacon bits, cuz the first rule of Flavourtown is Always Add Bacon, bro!!! Man, this meal was so good, I even ate all the salad — but next time, if I could swap it for a side of sausage, y’know, that would be great…

TORONTO’S TOP TAKEOUT: Who needs Migos when you’ve got migas???

Now, the last time I had huevos migas, this Tex Mex take on breakfast nachos, was in Austin — actually, it was at the airport, son! I never expected to find this dish in Toronto…so when I heard that Lady Marmalade, this funky breakfast/brunch joint on Broadview, had migas on the menu, you KNOW I was gonna twist it like it’s stir fry, bro!!!!!

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Basically, you’ve got every part of a balanced breakfast, right here. We’re talking scrambled eggs, sausage, cheese, rice, beans, pico, nachos…plus I paid 4 bucks extra for a buncha bacon, cuz the first rule of Flavourtown is Always Add Bacon! Now, when I had this dish in Texas, the tortilla chips were mixed right in, but in this order, they came served separately in a paper bag — which probably prevents them from getting soggy on the way over, I suppose.

Dude, this was one of the most filling breakfasts I had in a long time…and you KNOW I left no crumb behind, bro!!!!!!!!

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