Treat every man like a gentleman. Not because they are, but because you are.
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Treat every man like a gentleman. Not because they are, but because you are.
I love my job. Not only because of the satisfaction I get from creating something that moves people to action. But also because the environment at ad agencies is a cross between a college dorm and behind-the-scenes at Mythbusters. We’re always having fun, shooting the shit and coming up with outlandish activities.
Exhibit A: Cattle Battle
We like burgers. We wanted an excuse to eat more of them. We were curious about which places in Toronto make the best burgers. Voila. Cattle Battle.
Let’s go out every friday, pick up burgers from two different restaurants and compare them in a controlled environment. Ok…. now let’s dial it up a notch. Let’s create a 32 restaurant bracket, a la march madness, and run it until we have but one champion!
This is our gift to the world. We want you to follow us to keep tabs on which burgers are up to snuff. But more importantly, we aim to inspire you to hold Cattle Battles of your own. After all, two burgers are always better than one.
A Taste of my Childhood: Weber’s Hamburgers
Growing up in Ontario, I was lucky enough to make my way up north to cottages or camp from in the summertime. But for me, not the weather nor the calendar indicated summer quite like a stop at Weber’s.
I’m not going to tell you that it’s the biggest patties you’ve ever seen or the freshest you’ve ever tasted. But these little bundles of burger joy taste in your mouth the way the sun feels on your face. Ridden with charcoal flavour and packed into a fluffy, yet seemingly ordinary bun, Weber’s burgers are side-of-the-highway burger simplicity at its finest. You can get cheese if you want, but the only other toppings available are pickles, tomatoes, onions, ketchup and mustard – because nothing else is necessary.
As ridiculous as it sounds, there’s a lot more to Weber’s than the hot, beef sandwiches they sling from their grills. There’s a history there. A story that people from Southern Ontario just gravitate towards. Starting with the bridge.
As you’re driving up Highway 11 just north of Orillia, you’ll eventually see the big orange bridge that leads the southbound traffic across to the Weber’s. That bridge didn’t always live there. In fact, people used to dodge highway traffic to get to the promised land. It was the only burger that people were actually willing to risk their lives for. When Weber’s finally put up that iconic bridge, they truly carved out their section of that highway. Now it’s sticks out like the beacon of charcoal flavour to come.
You’ll also notice all the parked trains that you can eat in or see children playing on, all the grassy landscape, tons of picnic benches and the crunch sound of gravel under your feet as you shuffle towards ordering. The smells and sounds are almost as recognizable as the taste of their offerings.
And their ordering system? Genius! Because of the long lines that build up, Weber’s has got the waiting line analysis down to a science. They have order takers making their way down the line who fill out your order card and give it to you. The the money handlers come and take your cards to the front one by one. When they come back with your bill, they also have any change you’d require no matter what cash denomination you choose to pay with. By the time you make it to the front, it’s smooth sailing.
I could go on forever about Weber’s because it truly is the original favourite burger of a many young kids growing up in Toronto. I know it was for me. But sadly, nobody can understand what it’s about until they’ve stopped there with your sunglasses on and take it all in, knowing that a weekend up north is waiting on the other side.
Ok. I get it. I’m not the best burger critic. And it all boils down to one reason; I love burgers way too much. Sue me.
It’s like that episode in the Simpsons where Homer becomes a food critic and gives every restaurant a sparkling review. The Springfield townspeople end up getting overweight because of all the delicious establishments they now know to try.
Truth is that I’ve had a few people come back to me and tell me that the places I rave about weren’t up to snuff. Nothing makes me feel worse than sending a person to a place that doesn’t live up to the expectations I create. But everybody has different tastes. It’s not my fault if your tastebuds aren’t as advanced as mine and cannot decipher good burger from bad. If that’s the case, you’re on your own.
Hail to the Priest
Usually, it takes me a bit of time to absorb the whole burger experience when I sample a new spot. I have to let it stew before I can accurately portray my reflections. But this time, things are different. I don’t think I’ll ever get off the high I’m on since enjoying a beefy offering from The Burger’s Priest (http://www.theburgerspriest.com).
The love I had for what I just ate is very real. To the point that I came home and got typing immediately. I couldn’t let these emotions settle and fade. I had to pour my thoughts on a page.
I initially heard about The Burger’s Priest a while back. An old high school friend was telling me to go there and try “The Big Mick.” His beaming portrayal of this interpretation of the classic McDonald’s favourite, “The Big Mac,” sparked something in me to get there ASAP.
Which brings me to tonight. It was a tough day at the office – being the weekend and all. Going to work on a Saturday is never an easy pill to swallow but it was that much worse because I hadn’t eaten all day. So when my girlfriend picked me up, I needed an emotional pick-me-up as well. “To the Burger’s Priest,” I exclaimed.
Off we went, not really knowing what to expect. The anticipation was high as we ventured out east. When we arrived, we realized it’s more of a hole in the wall than expected. Regardless, we were pretty psyched to finally wrap our chompers around this highly touted, delectable tower of goodness.
When I walked in, I eavesdropped on two strangers on the tail-end of their conversation. Here’s how it went.
Guy 1: “I wonder why this place doesn’t advertise.”
Guy 2: “Why would they advertise? They sell out every night”
That’s when I tuned out and it hit me. Sell out…Sell out? How the hell can a burger place sell out? The simple answer is because they use freshly ground beef every day.
This place had to be good.
At this point, I was salivating so much that I could barely speak clearly enough to order my food. Although it probably sounded like gargling, I ordered “The Big Mick.” The guy at the counter immediately corrected me, “You mean the High Priest?”
Apparently they changed the name because “The Big Mick” was stepping on some toes. Whether he meant Ronald McDonald’s or Irish people’s, I couldn’t know for sure.
Either way, our order was in. I was so focused on getting that delicious work of art in my hands, I couldn’t even tell you what my girlfriend ordered. Lo and behold, there it was. This juicy, simple rendition of a Big Mac. Complete with pickles, lettuce, onions, cheese, two patties and the sauce. It even had that extra piece of bread in the middle. It was glorious.
It couldn’t have taken me more than 40 seconds to down that bad boy. Although the place may not have been a gourmet, upscale burger joint like some of the others in Toronto, it was a perfect example of the KISS theory. Keep it simple stupid! The patties were freshly made, thick enough to be significant and so juicy that by the end of my meal, my basket looked like a 6-year-old had dined on top of it.
What’s also interesting is that according to legend, there’s a “secret menu” that you only get access to if you “LIKE” The Burger’s Priest on Facebook. I have yet to check it out, but you can be sure I will. After all, I need to know what to order the next ten times I go there. Because if nothing else, one thing is for sure; this place just made its way into my regular burger roster. If every burger I eat for the rest of my life is a “High Priest,” I’ll die a happy man.
I just feel like writing. So here it is.
1) BQM – Once touted as my favourite burger place in Toronto, I have to correct myself. Be sure to go to the location on Ossington, as last night I went to the Diner-style BQM on Queen and although delicious, it was not quite the same.
2) Check out my friend’s blog http://stmy.tumblr.com/
3) Don’t fear change.
The Boss Tweed
m : brgr
Every topping costs extra, the service was overbearing (I mean, guy, stop talking already and let me eat) and the burger was simply par.
I don’t even want to waste my time finding a picture and writing a more in-depth entry. This place on King st (just east of Bathurst) is in its early stages, so hopefully they’ll get their act together and I’ll give it another whirl later on.