It’s Burger Week in Quebec City. Sixty restaurants all over Quebec City compete to win the title of Burger Week champion. Only one simple rule: the customer cannot pay more than 10$.
The purpose of this “competition” to encourage people to eat out and restaurants in Montreal, Winnipeg, Toronto and Port-au-Prince to create original, tasty and unique burgers. Customers then eat and vote for their favourite. Each restaurant hands you a QR code at the end of your meal to vote using their phone app. Download and details here.
In all, it’s nothing less than a popularity contest. In Quebec City, you can tell by the top three burgers that popularity has nothing to do with taste; a completely different outcome than the results in Montreal or Toronto. Three insanely different food cultures, three completely different results. Notwithstanding, a fun week in Quebec City. And chefs are going all out!
As I publish these words, there are still three days to go to the Burger Week. Already among the 60 different options, one burger has seriously grabbed my attention. It has not only for the ingredients, but the overall experience you get for 10$.
But first, my recommendations.
Must try combos
I’ve based my choice on ingredients -because yes folks, you can pretty much tell in advance what one will taste solely on ingredients- creativity, and quality of food the participating restaurants regularly serve. Some are very desperate for attention; you don’t want to fall in that trap even if it’s just 10$.
Fin Gourmet: Burger with the lot
Beef patty, 1608 cheese, prosciutto chips, fried egg, caramelised pineapple, marinated beetroot, gherkins, smoked paprika mayo, sesame bread. Australia anyone?
Versa: Turlo Burger
Half a pound of ground pork from the Turlo farm mixed in with white wine, bacon, shallots, parsley. Fleurmier cheese, lettuce, jalapeño apricot chutney topped with tarragon tartar sauce. Some of this province’s best pork comes from the Turlo Farm. A few James Beard nominated restaurants in New England and Maine work with Turlo Farm for the quality of their meat. The Versa is also the only gluten-free restaurant in Quebec City.
Échaudé: Veau qui “ris”
crispy veal sweetbread, Portobello mushrooms, Tomme de brebis cheese, garlic flower mayo. When, at any time of the year, can you eat a sweetbread burger in a restaurant for 10$? Only during Burger Week!
Café-bar Artéfact: Ti Wapiti
Elk burger, apple, Rumeur cheese (a brie), onions caramelized with ice cider and spicy chutney. A picture is worth a thousand word. Visit leburgerweek.com to see it.
Tournebroche: Tournebroche burger
Merguez style lamb Patty with Chèvretière cheese from Fromagerie des Grondines, roasted peppers, cumin ketchup, Ras el hanout mayo and breaded eggplant. Sounds like a trip to the Middle East.
For the free valet parking, for the decor, for the service and especially for the quality of ingredients, my vote goes to the Château Frontenac’s Bistro Le Sam, the Sam Décandent burger.
Canadian beef, fried onion ring resting on candied onions, a poached egg, Hercules cheese, Gotchukaru chili mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, all between a pretzel bun.