The winning burger.
Arteries clogged, bellies burst and pounds of meat were torn into yesterday at the The Chronicle and sister newspaper Cités-Nouvelles' office cafeteria as our intrepid team of taste testers wolfed down more hamburgers than anyone should ever have to, all in a bid to tell readers who would emerge as champion in the 2009 Best of The West competition's first contest, Best Burger.
In third place, with 296 points out of a possible 500, came McKibbin's. The Pointe Claire Irish pub and grill earned kudos for its toppings and bun. "Great pickles and tomatoes," wrote production manager Patrice Charbonneau in his comments. "Very generous on the condiments," he added.
Chronicle editor Albert Kramberger agreed. "Outstanding lettuce and pickle combo," he wrote.
Toula Foscolos, bureau chief for the websites of The Chronicle, Cités-Nouvelles, the Westmount Examiner and The Monitor, awarded points for eatability. "Easy to eat," she said. Indeed, of all the burgers that were munched down Thursday, the table looked most free of lettuce or relish drippings after everyone had a taste of McKibbin's.
In second place, with 383 points, came another well-known Pointe Claire bar and restaurant, Clyde's. "Nicely grilled bun," Foscolos noted, while Cités-Nouvelles reporter Marie-Hélène Verville was impressed with the amount of beef. "There was a lot of meat," she remarked. "A great meaty burger with a tasty bun," Kramberger summed it up.
There can only be one winner, however, and, rather unusually, given Best of the West's competitive inaugural year last summer, all judges unanimously agreed on the top spot.
O' Burger, which recently opened on St. John's and Salaberry Boulevard, was far and away the winner with a total of 459 points out of 500. "Definite winner!" Wrote sales assistant Talia D'Costa. "The burger is juicy. The bun was soft and tasty."
Charbonneau was equally impressed. "Extremely fresh and juicy. Totally delicious!" He said.
The three finalists for the Best Burger contest were chosen based on reader nominations to The Chronicle and Cités-Nouvelles.
Each judge graded their burger on a total of 100 points over five categories worth 20 points each. They were: juiciness, texture, eatability (in other words: the ability to eat the burger without making a mess of oneself, the table, and one's dignity), and taste.
Next time, their cast-iron stomachs restored to prime condition, our judges will be looking at Best Pizza. It's not too late to send in your nominations for that category and all remaining ones. Get in touch with news director Marc Lalonde by calling 514 685-4690, extension 243, or sending an e-mail (with the subject line Best of the West) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Check out The Chronicle's print edition on the following publication dates to see how your favourite fare fared.
1) Pizza (May 13)
2) Fish n’ chips ( May 20)
3) Poutine (May 27)
4) Sushi ( June 3)
5) Sweet treat (June 10)
6) Salad (June 17)
7) Backyard garden (June 24)
8) Late night eats (July 1)
9) Community pool (July 8)
10) Steak (July 15)
11) Pasta dish (July 25)
12) Bagels (Aug. 5)
13) Breakfast ( Aug. 12)
14) Sandwich (Aug. 19)
15) Readers' choice (Aug. 26)