Burger 249: Bar & Boeuf | Mr. Lew's Great Burger Search

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LOCATION CLOSED AS OF JUNE 21, 2014

500 McGill
Montréal, Québec

Métro:  Square-Victoria
Bus:  RTL 55, STM 61, 75, 168, 715

Visit:  May 13, 2014

http://www.baretboeuf.com/

After 10 months and 48 burgers, it is finally time to get to the final regular selection of the fifth season of this search.  With a lot of things happening on the personal side of my life, I had to rush to finish this season of the search.  This has given me the opportunity to try some of the places that I’ve been looking forward to.  One of those places is Bar & Boeuf.

Early on in the history of Mr. Lew’s Great Burger Search, I had a list of places that I wanted to go to.  On that initial list was Bar & Boeuf.  Over time, the burger disappeared and reappeared.  At that time, there was a little six degrees of separation thing happening that, in a way, kept me away.  My sister was involved with someone who was a good friend with one of the people behind the restaurant.  That sounds complicated, but that’s life.  Whenever I know someone who is connected to a restaurant, I have large hesitations in making a visit.

Now that time has passed us by, it was time to finally visit Bar & Boeuf to check it out for myself.  One of the reasons that the place stuck to mind was that a few days earlier, I had an outing down the street.  It was the funniest thing that happened on my way there.  As I was walking to the other restaurant, I skipped by Bar & Boeuf without really noticing.  The worst part was that I thought about it for a few days prior.  Again, that’s just life.

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I made my way to the restaurant on a decent looking Tuesday afternoon.  I wasn’t really in the best of mood, but there’s nothing like any restaurant visit to set that straight.  As soon as I walked in the door, the server greeted me and took me to my table.  Since it was still a little early, I was really the only one in the entire place.

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For me, the true highlight of the entire visit was the service.  I’ve been on a lucky streak lately with servers and this one was right up there.  This individual was polite from the first interaction to the very last one.  All requests and questions were dealt with in the most professional manner possible.  Things like that sometimes outweigh any food you’ll ever eat.

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Before the appetizer came, the server came to the table with a basket of bread and asked me what I wanted.  I have to note that one of the choices was a fancy raisin bread.  That hit the spot and it just had to be the most unique raisin bread I ever had.

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French Onion Soup ($7)

It seems like when I have onion soup, I tend to have them in bunches.  The last burger visit included a similar soup.  I’m starting to really like ordering them and they do include cheese.

This particular soup was interesting.  The soup itself wasn’t as piping hot as you would expect it to be.  Some might see that as a bad thing, but I found it much easier to eat.  The cheese was also a nice component and no one can complain about the generous serving of onions.  It was the right way to begin this visit.

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Hamburger ($19)

This burger contains lettuce and cheddar.  There is also a bacon and red onion relish.

To be honest, I didn’t really have big time expectations for this burger.  Usually, I either expect them to be good or just really awful.  But, this time, I wasn’t really sure about what I was about to get.  The interesting component in this one was the unusual relish combination.  I misread the menu a bit and thought that I was getting bacon separately from the red onion.  Then again, it was one of the more unique bacon presentations I had in a burger ever.

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Structurally speaking, there were two things that bothered me a bit.  The first issue is one that I’ve been noticing a lot lately.  I’m not sure if it’s just me, but does bread have to be larger than the meat patty?  This burger had that happening too and it created an issue when it came to getting complete bites of all the ingredients.  I might be asking too much, but I really like it when I’m not getting mouthfuls of bread.

The item was something that I haven’t seen so much of in the past.  The way the cheese melted over the burger was interesting.  At certain intervals, certain globs of gooey cheese would just drop out.  Compared to the above mentioned issue, this was relatively minor.  On the bright side, I got a chance to taste the cheese alone and it was pretty awesome.

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The last thing that I need to mention involves the make or break aspect.  The meat patty came to the table a lot closer to well done.  Most of the time, that breaks the burger experience.  Unfortunately, it did here as well.  Plus, it seemed like the meat was coated in something that resembled BBQ sauce.  At the beginning, it might taste pleasant, but as you’re in the later stages, it makes it so much harder to put down.

In the end, some of the minor components were the shining stars.  However, those smaller elements weren’t enough to raise the superstar to play with the rest of the team.  The end product of this burger really didn’t do it for me.  But, I have to mention that it was the only thing that really work for the whole visit.

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Profiteroles ($7)

These hollowed out pastries contain three types of ice cream.  The types are vanilla, caramel, and chocolate.

Going into this visit, I thought I had my dessert choice down, but I had second thoughts.  I was scrambling a bit to choose properly and that’s when I got to the “profiteroles.”  They don’t seem like the traditional kind, but who is going to argue semantics with you when there’s chocolate involved.

The selection of ice cream was really something.  The vanilla was the softest of the three, followed by the chocolate.  The caramel was a little tougher, so to speak.  The fun of it all was dividing the “cups” into two and placing ice cream into them.  There was also a flask of hot chocolate syrup, which made things a little more interesting.  Plus, when you mix ice cream flavors, you can’t go wrong there.

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Final Verdict

My visit to Bar & Boeuf was one of my favorites of 2014 so far.  While the main event burger wasn’t up to par in my opinion, everything else really worked well for me.  Plus, the service elevated everything, which allows me to forget about the burger.

Bar & Boeuf on Urbanspoon

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  1. mrlewburger posted this
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