Metro: Mont-Royal, Sherbrooke
Bus: STM 29, 30, 144, 427
Visit: May 15, 2013
A reputation is something that is very important. I can only imagine what kind of reputation I have. Through life, we strive to create and foster the best kind of reputation. Based on that, decisions in all aspects of life are made. From time to time, there are those who don’t follow the natural course and go towards a different direction. Then there are those that boldly call themselves La Mauvaise Reputation.
It’s been almost 2 months since I’ve had a beef burger on the island of Montreal. So, when it comes to choosing a place to get back in the swing of things, I had to go with a place that’s been getting some buzz. Even though La Mauvaise Reputation has been open to the public for the last 6 months, they’ve just recently had their grand opening.
It was just about any normal Wednesday when I decided to see what the fuss was all about. If you remember this particular day, you’ll remember just how much rain we were getting. There were moments where I was considering not going at all. But, if I just let a little water get in the way of a burger, this search would have been over a long time ago.
La Mauvaise Reputation is located on a trendy stretch of Saint-Denis between Duluth and Roy. Make sure that you keep your eyes peeled because you might just miss this place altogether. But, once you make it past all the tables and staircases, you’ll find yourself inside a charming little place.
Now, I wasn’t completely sure of the opening hours to the restaurant. So, I went in and took a chance. It was a little past 4 p.m. when I went in on a Wednesday afternoon. I also happened to be the only customer in the entire place. If you look around on the internet, the opening hours actually vary from Facebook, to Yelp, and to Google. But, I didn’t have an issue as I got to choose my table and we were underway.
I’ll be honest, the restaurant looks like just about any other place I’ve ever been to. You had your row of tables by the way. There was this large screen showing a bicycle race at the end of that row. There was the bar by the front door where the staff converged. So, if I was to find something different, it would have to be in the food.
The service was also quite interesting. I have to say that I was actually in pretty good hands. I was checked on regularly and my water was filled with great consistency. Even my misreading of the menu was met with a really polite response. It’s the kind of thing that you do look for in any kind of restaurant. Things were looking up.
The menu is a split between burger selections and different kinds of poutine. There are a few other items on the menu, but you’ll find that burgers are a big deal here. It should be noted that the sides only come with the signature burgers. For the regular burgers, you have to purchase a separate side dish, which wasn’t a big deal to me.
Le Cheez Classique
This double burger contains lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, onions, cheddar, and bacon.
For my side dish, I went for the baby sized classic poutine. I get really worried with what passes off as small or regular sizes in Montreal restaurants. So, when I saw that the baby sized poutine was the way it was, I was relieved.
With the curds being a tad bit cold at the beginning, I started to wonder if I made the right choice. But, as time passed, those thoughts went away. The cheese melted somewhat and provided the proper coverage for the fries. When you combined the sauce in all of this, things worked really well. The poutine played its role well as a side dish as it didn’t overpower the burger whatsoever, but let you wanting to take more bites of cheesy goodness.
Despite taking vows of no longer going for double burgers, I just had to go for that this time around. The patties in the burger are quite small, which in a way, negate the fact that you have two patties. Even with that being said, the biggest difficulty that the majority of double burgers have is the fact that it’s hard to keep together.
In this burger, that was the case as well. There were times where I could feel the contents slipping out. Luckily, I was able to push them back into place when necessary and that issue became a moot point. Then again, I have almost 200 burgers under my belt and these things tend to pop up from time to time.
The other thing you almost immediately notice is just how greasy the burger is. To most, it is off-putting. To me, it is a good sign. Knowing that, the odds of having a decent burger greatly increased. Since the patties were so thin, the juices were lacking somewhat in that department, but the taste more than made up for that.
The combination of ingredients is another thing that I have to mention. I was doubting the addition of the onions on top, but they actually meshed well with the more classic components on the bottom of the burger. It actually shows that some thought went into making this burger, especially when you see the lettuce under the meat patty, protecting the bun.
In all, I was pleased with this burger. Things went rather well and the ingredients were well chosen. The problems with structure are unavoidable mainly due to the fact that there were two patties in it. I would definitely give this burger another shot.
To finish things off, I decided to have a piece of chocolate cake. There is one thing that you can’t really ignore and that’s the fact that this piece of cake is nearly 7 dollars. When your burger is almost that much, it’s just strange that a cake is about the same price. So, what goes through anyone’s mind is that it has to be a pretty darn good chocolate cake.
With those things floating around in my head, I went in for my first bite. The outer edges of the cake didn’t really do it for me. If I were to stop right there, I would be kicking myself really hard today. The thing is, you have to move towards the center to get the really nice stuff. That was the case right here, as the center of the cake was like a chocolate mousse cake and that worked really well for me.
La Mauvaise Reputation launches itself in heavy competition when it comes to burgers and Saint-Denis. While it will take a lot to set it apart from the rest, one will have to actually taste the food to see that. It’s clear that great thought went into the design of the burgers. For me, that’s something that I can’t ignore. So, I do encourage people to come see for themselves why they do have such a Mauvaise Reputation.