Annex 39: Paulo & Suzanne | Mr. Lew's Great Burger Search

5501 Gouin Ouest
Montreal, Quebec

Bus: STL 55, 144, 151, 902, STM 64, 68, 69, 117, 180, 468

Visit: August 30, 2011

A year ago, I entered a small 24 hour restaurant for the first time.  During that occasion, it was to try their burger offerings.  I’ll be honest, it was one of the better burgers I’ve tried over the last 2 years.  Since I’m back at work and in the middle of the preparation that requires most of my attention, my colleagues and I needed something quick to get the job done for the day.  Paulo & Suzanne was within reasonably quick driving distance from where we were.

Paulo & Suzanne is a small casse-croute location with a decently vast menu that is served at all hours of the day.  You can get breakfast at any hour of the day.  We were five people in all and one of our participants decided to get a breakfast option.  When we entered, we were lucky to get one of the few tables as we seated ourselves.

At the front, there is a call window where a line of people waiting for take-out.  The location of the place is quite good.  With a major hospital right across the street, the potential customer base is huge.  So, it was no surprise that the restaurant was full, the terrace was full, and the line was long.  There’s nothing like crowds of people to tell you how well a place does.

The service is interesting.  For the people in the restaurant itself, there was one server.  I think I even recognize them as the person who was on duty for Burger 61 back in October of 2010.  With so many people in the restaurant, they handled the masses as well as anyone could.  The server also had a pleasant personality which made things all the better.

It was the fact that the place was packed that had me a little worried.  Having only an hour to eat doesn’t sound like a hectic thing.  But when you have to make your way there and back, it starts to add up.  Now, the fact that our meals came out at different times didn’t bother me, because it’s not a fine dining location.  So, I’m happy to report that we managed to make it on time.

BBO Poutine

This poutine has pepper sauce, which contains beef, onions, and bacon.

When I accompany my colleagues to a place that has a burger on the menu, the question is obvious, “you’re ordering a burger, right?”  Well, my interest in Paulo & Suzanne was peaked once again when I was told about their inclusion of new poutine combinations.  I’ve already had the burger and was really looking forward to having the poutine.  So, looking at the menu, I scanned, looking for the one with bacon in it, for obvious reasons.  There was only one option with bacon and I found the list of ingredients to be rather interesting.

When I got the poutine, I noticed 2 things.  The first thing was the immense size of the portion I’d be getting.  That worried me because with the limited time I had, timing and speed would be a factor.  Over the years, I’ve tried to slow down while I’m eating, which now makes me one of the slowest eaters of our group.  The amount of poutine was good because I really felt it for a little while after completion.  The second thing I noticed was the unique shape of the bowl.  It doesn’t show in the picture, but one side was higher than the rest.  I think it’s to better facilitate the scooping of poutine out of the bowl.  While it was something interesting, I don’t know whether it made me eat faster or not.

If you’d ask me to order a poutine and have any ingredients I want, I don’t think I’d pick the ones in this poutine.  It’s not that they’re bad of anything, it’s just that they’re not my favorite things to have.  For example, I could’ve done without the onions.  Now, you’re probably asking yourself, “why didn’t you ask to have the poutine made without what you didn’t want?”  The answer is simple.  I, at no times, ask to have a menu item changed.  Unless I can add on, I like to taste what’s there and what was supposed to be original.

The unique factor of this poutine, in my opinion, was the beef.  What it looked like was a hamburger patty cooked, then broken up to form small pieces.  While, the meat was fine, I was on the fence as to its place in the poutine.  It seems so unusual to have something like that in a traditional poutine.

The main ingredients were fine.  The french fries were easy to eat and consistent with what you’ll get in most Quebec small fast food restaurants.  The cheese posed the biggest challenge as it was the strings made the eating process a little awkward and messy.  Trying to do it cleanly wasn’t easy for me.  Though they call it a pepper sauce, I didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary with it.  There are so many powerful ingredients which overpowered the sauce.

Overall, if you’d ask me about ordering a poutine at this restaurant, I’d would not hesitate for one second.  However, if you’d ask me to order this specific one, I don’t think I’d be as willing.  On paper, it sounds like a good idea, but for me, it didn’t really hit the spot.  In a way, it makes my dream of a bacon cheeseburger poutine wash away.

If you’re interested to see what Burger 61 at the same restaurant looks like, click here.