We are now three days out from Halifax Burger Week, and you can almost hear the stomachs growling in anticipation.
I’m assuming by now that you’ve put somewhat of a list together of burgers that you want to check off your Passport (because only a crazy person would go into a 140-burger Burger Week without some sort of game plan), but just in case you need some further inspiration, I’ve got you covered with the Preview Series once again!
For Part 2 of the series (you can take a look at Part 1 here) I have an early look at the burgers being slung by Durty Nelly’s, Harbour City, The Auction House, and Stubborn Goat, for Burger Week 2019!
(Also, if you haven’t checked out all of the #HFXBurgerWeek giveaways I’ve been doing over on Instagram (@lifeofburgers), be sure to go take a look and win yourself some Burger Week burgers!)
Burger: The Pickle Back – Pickle-brined fried chicken, topped with shredded iceberg lettuce, purple cabbage and house-pickled veg, smothered with chipotle ranch on a grilled buttered brioche bun
Price: $15 with $2 going to Feed Nova Scotia
When doing my Burger Week Wrap-Up’s for the last two years, Durty Nelly’s has rightfully earned a spot in my Honourable Mentions, and even though it’s still early, I have a feeling that they will be landing on my favourites list again this year.
Opting for chicken as the protein this time around, The Pickle Back burger (which takes it’s name from the unique practice of chasing a shot of whiskey with a shot of pickle juice) is a fried chicken fan’s dream. The breading was light but still had that awesome crunch you would expect, and with the bold taste from the pickle brine, they really created a delicious, and tender piece of chicken.
The purple cabbage and house-pickled veggies spruced up the protein, and gave the burger a crisp, crunchy texture. There was an appropriate amount of the chipotle ranch, and it provided a hearty kick to take it up a notch.
If The Pickle Back is on your list this year (which it absolutely should be), make sure you come hungry cause this one packs a lot more than it lets on!
Burger: Kiwi Burger – All-beef patty, bacon, caramelized onions, smoked avocado aioli, beetroot, lettuce and a sunny side up egg on a brioche bun
Price: $15 with $1 going to Feed Nova Scotia
Harbour City has quietly snuck it’s way into the list of restaurants that I eagerly await to see what they come up with every year for Burger Week. Last year they had a nest of spaghetti on their burger, and this year they threw a curveball in the form of beetroot.
In all honesty, I thought the beetroot was not going to work. I wasn’t sold on the idea of it pairing well with the other components of the burger, and I thought it was going to let me down. Boy, was I wrong. The beetroot was actually really awesome! It gave a nice, rustic flavour to the burger, and it was a subtle companion to the other elements at play.
I always love an egg on a burger and this one didn’t disappoint (it also provided me with a really satisfying yolk drip). The bacon, caramelized onions, and smoked avocado aioli all did their part well, and the portions were near perfect so that nothing overpowered anything else. I do have to give it up to the beef patty though. That thing was seasoned perfectly, and the juices were out of this world! This is the kind of burger that could be easy to passover when making your selections, but you’ll be disappointed if you miss out on this one.
The Auction House
Burger: Asiago Luego – All-beef patty, bacon, tomato jam and drizzled with an asiago cheese sauce
When it comes to the $6 burgers for Burger Week, it can be tricky for restaurants to come up with a burger that is unique and delicious, but also can be accomplished without costing more than the price tag. The Auction House has gotten really good at doing just that, and every year I walk away impressed with what they are able to create.
It may not look like much is going on between the buns of the Asiago Luego, but where there is simplicity, there is also a whole lot of flavour. This is due largely in part to tomato jam and asiago cheese sauce. The tomato jam plays mostly into the savoury side of things, but there is a hint of sweetness that is a nice little addition. The asiago cheese sauce has a bit of boldness to it, and it smothers the all-beef patty in that gooey cheese texture you know and love. I appreciated how much of the cheese there was as it provided some extra dipping on the plate!
This burger isn’t trying to wow you with crazy toppings or towering height. It has a few simple components that work well together, and it leaves you feeling satisfied without breaking the bank.
Burger: The Nutty Mushroom – Plant-based walnut and mushroom patty, arugula, chickpea mayonnaise, red pepper relish, brioche bun
Price: $18 with $2 going to Feed Nova Scotia
When you hear someone say Burger Week, 9 times out of 10 your mind is going to go to the classic burger protein – beef. While beef will always be king of the burgers, there are some great veggie burger options that like to come out and play during the meatiest week of the year.
I can always count on Stubborn Goat to come up with something original for the big week (last year’s Sloppy Joe McGuinness Burger was a home run), and this year they’ve decided to go completely meatless with their Nutty Mushroom burger.
The plant-based walnut and mushroom patty had a very down to earth flavour, and I thought the walnuts were a great choice as it gave some texture and crunch to the otherwise softer ingredients. The red pepper relish brought a bit of energy to the burger, and the contrast was perfect with the more subdued elements.
Be sure to give some love to the meatless options this year. I love a big ol’ juicy beef burger as much as the next person, but veggie burgers can surprise you at times, and some of my favourite Burger Week burgers in past years have been completely meat-free!