Hicks Weekly Dish: Classic Burger Wars


None of that fancy stuff – lamb burgers or rib eye burgers to sit down diners.

It was a hunt for the best mass-produced burger in town.

The burger had to come from a well-established chain – McDonalds, A&W, Harvey’s, Dairy Queen, Wendy’s, Burger King.

Fat Burger, in Canada since 2005, went under the wire.

The burgers had to be comparable – no specials of the month, either a big meat patty or two doubles, always with bacon and cheese: tested were a McDonald’s Quarter Pounder, a DQ Grill Burger, a Harvey’s Angus Burger, a Burger King’s Double Whopper, A&W Poppa Burger, Wendy’s Bacon Deluxe Single and a Fat Burger Baby Burger.

They weighed more or less the same, 250 to 300 grams, with the two patties adding an additional 50 to 100 grams.

In terms of calories, most recorded between 900 and 1,100 calories. Even without fries or onion rings, that’s still half the recommended daily calories for a short adult.

No matter what brand or model, open them up and they all have the same toppings, top to bottom – mayo, ketchup, lettuce, pickle, tomato, chopped or sliced ​​onion, a slice of Kraft style plastic coated cheese and beef. patty. Or if it were two patties, the cheese could be in the middle.

Burgers aren’t that cheap. These burgers, with cheese and bacon, cost from $ 5.50 to $ 6.50 each. (With one exception. The McDonald’s Quarter Pounder was $ 4.39. But it was smaller, at around 600 calories.)

In first place… Harvey’s Angus Burger (with bacon and cheese): 4.5 out of 5 Suns! $ 6.59.

Harvey’s makes a beautiful hamburger thing. Others may pretend they’re just talking about natural Canadian beef etc, but Harvey’s respects size, quality, and taste.

They all claim to be fire grilled, or charcoal grilled or whatever, but it’s only at Harvey’s that you can really taste the light charcoal of the grill. And the big pancake is hot and juicy! With a “salad bar” from which to choose the toppings, the lettuce is fresh, the tomato tasty, the pickles sliced ​​long and thin. The bun isn’t fancy, but it will do.

Second… A&W Poppa Burger, (two beef patties) 4.25 on 5 suns. $ 5.25 with bacon.

A&W is a remarkable story… a dying chain until clever retro marketing and good fast food brought it back to the top, today with over 20 restaurants in Greater Edmonton.

Again, it is about the meat. A&W burgers are made with flavorful, well-seasoned real meat, not sawdust. Lettuce, etc. is generally fresh, and A&W Burger Mayonnaise has a little bit of its own. When you eat an A&W burger, it does not dissolve in mouth porridge, but retains the taste of each ingredient. A&W also offers the best onion burgers and great buns.

Third… The Fat Burger Baby Burger with cheese and bacon, 3.5 out of 5 Suns. The Fat Burger is pricey, $ 5.99 for the basic, an extra dollar each for bacon and cheese. But the meat is fresh and generous, the bacon slices were among the few you could actually taste. Why is the generic white bread roll inferior?

Then there is the rest:

Burger King’s Double Whooper, two beef patties with cheese, not bad, maybe 3.25 out of 5 suns. As generic as a burger you can find. Everything was fine, nothing came out, the burger meat was okay but not comparable to the Top Three.

The Wendy’s Bacon Deluxe was a disappointment, 3 out of 5 suns. Despite the publicity, the meat patty stood out mainly for its shape (square) and not much else. I nibbled my way through the burger – with all the usual condiments and toppings – but couldn’t find anything extra of interest.

What happened to the old McDonald’s Quarter Pounder? I don’t remember it was a smaller burger, with a thin patty of meat. On the plus side, it’s cheap, at $ 4.39. The toppings were dull, all crushed together. And it tasted like… a McDonald’s burger, obviously sought after to create a consistent McDonald’s taste in your mouth when chewed – nothing fancy, nothing bad, just McDonald’s. 3 of 5 Suns.

My DQ Bacon and Cheese Grill Burger ($ 5.49) at Dairy Queen seemed like an afterthought. The lettuce and tomato were tired and mushy, the roll was dull, the “flame” grilled meat had no distinctive taste. 2.5 out of 5 Suns.

So if I fancy a good ol ‘burger, it’s Harvey’s or A&W for me.

And if you want to avoid obesity, avoid French fries and carbonated drinks.

Graham hicks

780 707 6379

[email protected]



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