Burger 107: Gringo | Mr. Lew's Great Burger Search

7270 Saint-Zotique E.
Montreal, Quebec

Bus: STM 18, 44, 95, 141, 460

Visit: August 2, 2011

I’ve been doing the Great Burger Search for 2 years now and there has always been a little thorn in my side. It is the fact that I have a hard time finding real burger locations east of Pie-IX. Well, until just recently, my search has finally brought me back something of value.

Just by reading the name of the restaurant, you can guess what you’ll get in it. Now, I nearly walked in to the restaurant next to it by accident. Once I set myself straight, I finally entered a Wild West take-off. The ceiling and walls are very much like a saloon, or what I think a saloon looks like. As a matter of fact, my booth was facing this huge movie poster for a Western.

I found the restaurant to be a little tiny for my taste, but then again, it was cozy. Most patrons seemed to know the staff well, which speaks a lot for their customer care. I saw some people just sit there, for what seemed an eternity, drinking coffee and chatting. So, I don’t think you’d have trouble getting seated during “lunch rush.”

The server responsible for me was very kind and courteous. They seemed like a real sympathetic kind of person. I noticed another server delivering a pizza to another table. They proceeded to slice it up for the 2 patrons. After given them their portions, that server joined in on their conversation for as long as it took to eat the first slices. Once those slices disappeared, the server handed them the final slices. Point being, that server didn’t move the entire meal. That leaves a few question marks in my mind.

Decor and service aside, it was finally nice to see options in this part of the city. Despite the fact that I felt the menu was too broad (too much Gordon Ramsay of late), it delivers for the kind of clientele that would go to a restaurant like this. I mention that because there are at least 5-6 major chain restaurants competing for business within walking distance of this place.

Wild Bill Burger Combo

Wild Bill Burger

This burger contains coleslaw, tomatoes, mustard, cheese, and bacon.

I don’t know what I was thinking when I ordered this burger, or even when I was supposedly reading the menu. On the menu, it clearly said half pound burger. I don’t think that sunk in too much. I also felt shortchanged recently and went for the double. That didn’t seem to register either with my ever so shrinking burger brain. I didn’t do the math before, during, or after ordering.

My lack of awareness didn’t prepare me for what was about to come my way. The second I laid eyes on this plate, my jaw wanted to drop so low, that it would’ve dug its way to China by now. This burger is huge. It didn’t properly fit in my hands. It took me a few moments to figure out what I did to myself. How on Earth was I to eat this thing? No matter what method I chose, I was stuck with my credo of “no matter what, finish it all.” The road was going to be long.

The first bite of this burger pretty much allowed me to figure out this burger really well. This is an all-dressed casse-croute burger with cheese and bacon on steroids. It tastes exactly the same and has the same components, but a million times bigger.

The biggest concern for me was the structure and the ability of the bun to hold everything. I was surprised that this burger held up the entire time. Even though, at the mid point, having used my upside down placement strategy, hardly anything fell apart or out of the burger. Even though there were things that fell out, they weren’t the essential components to the burger.

I have a love-hate relationship with mustard. I love it on sandwiches and hate it on burgers. This was no exception. The mustard hurt this burger two ways. The first way was because it weakened the bottom bun creating a messy situation. Luckily, the bun didn’t collapse, but my shirt felt the mustard enough. The second downfall was the fact that the mustard overpowered all the other ingredients, even the cheese and bacon. Mustard does not belong on burgers.

I can’t go on without delving into the immensity of the burger and meal. This, out of 107 burgers, to date, was the most difficult challenge I’ve ever had. There was so much that the meat became redundant and tasteless. I don’t think I ever really truly enjoyed what I had here. In retrospect, it would’ve been wiser to order something like this without the sides. The sheer fact that I finished this thing is a miracle, one that I didn’t really feel good about.

Overall, while some claim that this is a great burger, I have my doubts. It is nothing more that a casse-croute style burger that you can get at any local place. The only big exception is that it was genetically engineered to overtake humanity. The taste is no different than its smaller counterpart, but the extremities make it so much harder to detect that taste as you finish. If you want to challenge yourself, as a big eater, you can try it. If you want a real burger, this is too ordinary for that. Sometimes, extraordinary doesn’t equal great.

Proof that I actually finished this monstrosity.

Gringo on Urbanspoon

  1. mrlewburger posted this