Visited: Saturday September 5, 2009 1:30PM
Ordered: Shack Special (x1), Homemade Cheeseburger (x1), Root Beer (x1), Bottled Water (x1)
Total Cost: $14.10 + $2 ATM fee
Dave N.’s Review
The Burger Shack almost has a cool vibe going for it. The sign and roof thatching out front make you think you’re entering an awesome tiki-themed restaurant, but the atmosphere is killed almost as soon as you enter: inside, the table-tops are the only bit of decor that keep up the theme. The rest of the restaurant looks like a typical divey burger joint. There’s nothing wrong with it, but I was disappointed because it didn’t live up to my (admittedly high) expectations.
Ordering here is way trickier than you would expect! There are couple things to watch out for. First, I was unpleasantly surprised that they only take cash. That meant my ordering was interrupted by a trip to the dodgy ATM at the donut shop next door, which charged me $2 to withdraw cash. Suck. Once I finally was able to order, I didn’t realize that there were two categories of burger, homemade and "regular" (frozen?). I figured the namesake burger, the Shack Special, was the best bet and ordered it without realizing it was one of the regular burgers. Why wouldn’t the Shack Special be homemade? Ridiculous.
Service was pretty fast, the restaurant was clean. If you go in aware of the gotchas mentioned above, you should have a pretty good go of things.
I’m going to be honest, I was pretty pissed that this sucker wasn’t homemade. I was eyeing Caryl’s burger with some serious envy. The Shack Special consisted of two patties, two processed cheese slices and toppings of my choosing on a kaiser. The topping selection was pretty standard fare — ketchup, yellow mustard, pickles, etc. The only relatively interesting topping was fried onions. I opted for BBQ sauce, mustard, the fried onions and a few hot peppers.
The thing definitely wasn’t a bad burger, but it sure as heck wasn’t anything special. The frozen patties were thin and disappointing, with fairly lackluster flavour. The kaiser was nice, but they grilled it without asking me and I don’t like grilled buns, so it ended up too crispy and burny for my tastes. The fried onions really were the saving grace, but fried onions can only go so far, you know?
If I return I am absolutely going for one of the homemade burgers, bringing cash, and asking for my bun not to be grilled. Lessons learned.
Caryl D.’s Review
They say that smell is the most powerful of the senses and can remind us of past experiences. I must say that my recent trip to Burger Shack brought back memories from when I was a little girl. That smell, oh how I remembered that smell. Driving north on Highway 11 with my whole family and stopping at Webers – for those of you who haven’t experienced Webers on Hwy 11 let me indulge you: a little dive, with old trains on the lawn where we used to go and play, cars flying by on the highway, and smoke billowing out of the little store that made the hamburgers. I have no idea what the burgers tasted like, I don’t remember what I got on it, but I do remember, the smell, the greasy, smoky, fire burning smell of those burgers. Three days ago it felt as though I had traveled back in time: I pulled into the parking lot, stepped out of the car and I could see the smoke rising out of the roof, plummeting down towards me and straight into my nose, there it was, that smell, Webers burgers, only this place was the Burger Shack at Oriole and Eglinton. What a place!
The atmosphere was rather plain, although the booths intrigued me because there were individual seats that you had to pull down. It was slightly weird and uncomfortable, and as someone with OCD I had to put the seat down beside me even though no one was sitting there. As a side note, it’s cash only. That wasn’t the biggest concern because my sugar daddy Dave took care of the bill, but if you’re planning on going, be sure to have cash, or a sugar daddy/momma.
I ordered the Homemade Cheeseburger and I was sure to get the works, save for the hot peppers and I think sauerkraut. The burger was juicy; the bun was toasted, and the size was perfect. To my surprise, I could taste the burger through all the fixens, which is a bonus for me because I love putting lots of toppings on my burgers. My only problem was that there could have been more cheese.
My burger experience was great, although, I wonder, was it mostly nostalgia that made it good? Either way, if smell has the power of memory, then the taste of these burgers has the power to keep me going back for more.