Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Park Tower (closed): 4.2/5

Bacon Burger $7.25 - Score: 4.3

Cheese $6.75 - Score: 3.8

Fat Boy $7.75 - Score: 4.0

2015 Portage Ave

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How big is it?
The Park Tower’s interior décor makes up for the nondescript strip mall exterior. We made reservations and they were ready and waiting for us when we arrived early for lunch. It got quite busy but our waitress was super. She was all smiles, very quick and made sure we were all happy.

The tables were set with glasses and silverware, nice tablecloths and tall, comfy chairs. The room was bright from all the surrounding windows and the floor tiled. There were lots of appealing design elements and stylish lighting, but the ceiling was the most interesting with its inverted colorful pyramids.

After telling us all the specials, our waitress was surprised (like a kitten playing peek-a-boo) that we all wanted burgers. They offer a great selection of burger choices and sitting in the middle of the table was a card describing the 2 lb Tower Burger with a taunt “Are you up for it?” Nelson couldn’t resist Brett’s dare, so the two of them went for the Tower. The ladies all ordered singles and I ordered a double.

2 lb Tower Burger

As we waited for our burgers the restaurant slowly filled up - seemingly the popular choice of silver maned ladies. They of course, didn’t order burgers, and instead opted for one of the main specials or some other form of dainty food. If you’re in a hurry, stick with the special. It took a while for our burgers to come out, but it could have been the extra cooking time required for the 2 lb burgers and they served us all at once. First the singles came out and they were huge. Then my double came out and my jaw dropped at the sight of it. More revealing though, was the look of fear that came over Brett and Nelson when they realized their Tower Burgers were going to be twice as big. Then the 2 lb burgers came out and they were met with shock and awe and many an “Oh my God!”

Tower Burger Strata
When we first looked at the menu, the burger prices seemed a little high, but once we saw the size of the meat patties, the price was justified. As to the 2 lb Tower Burger, as Nelson put it “When a burger costs $15, there's a good reason.”

Single Burger with Fries

The beef patties were not only thick, but huge in diameter. They were easily 2 to 3 times the size of most other burgers we’ve had - comparable in size to Super Boys 1/2 lb patty but even bigger. The buns were equally matched to the task. It raised the question, did Park Tower size the burgers to match the buns or vice versa? Dani had a single and commented “the burger was yummy. Good bun/patty ratio. Shouldn't have ordered the fries though.”

Tower Burger Challengers

The patties were juicy - almost fatty - and served steaming hot. The first couple of bites were pleasantly intriguing with all the savoury seasoning, but after a while I was only aware of the pepper. My double burger had *way* too much meat for a nice flavour balance. My mistake - I ordered the double without finding out how big the single was first. As much as I enjoy beef, the meat overwhelmed the other flavours in my double burger. It was tasty, but it’s difficult for that much meat to stay as flavourful as a small, seared, patty like UnBurger served. My advice - less is more.

Bacon Double Cheeseburger

My double burger came with double bacon and it was all in a stack on the bottom of the burger. I liked it. I had a bacon layer I could taste much like a well made Club House. There was a nice layer of chili on my double burger and I enjoyed it. It had a tanginess which worked well against the dominant beef flavour. Even the cheese was tasty.

45 minutes to move the Tower 12"

It’s a minor thing, but some of the toppings seemed rushed with mayonnaise drooling down the side or a big dollop of mustard smack, dab in the middle of the bun. They offer relish if you ask for it, which savvy Kari did.

Tower Burger eating technique
Most of today’s comments were about the 2 lb Tower Burger though. Brett said “If I could just unhinge my jaw, I could eat my burger; so far all I can eat is the fall out.” Karen noted that “Nelson is all appetite and no body!” and Kari observed “It was bigger than Nelson's head” and added “I can just see Brett and Nelson, lying like Pythons with a big burger bump, unable to move.” Nelson has been upgraded on Brett's hero list for his burger choice. Nelson understated “That was one big burger, but "svelte Brett" managed to eat the whole thing.” He also commented “The lack of oxygen to my brain is impeding my ability to string words together for this review.” Brett got the meat sweats afterwards. Good thing there were lots of napkins.

Gravy comes by boat
Karen ordered a side Greek salad instead of fries, and it was a huge portion with fresh Romaine and tomatoes and lots of Feta cheese. It was fairly liberally drenched in dressing though and soggy closer to the bottom.

Burger Club Crew
On a side note, Nelson does a really good cow impersonation and Kari was hilarious showing us what a (bad) dancer with a "white man overbite” looks like. We’re going to have to start shooting video at BurgerClub.

Park Tower Restaurant on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

  1. RadicalClubhouseTasterSeptember 30, 2011 at 8:34 AM

    If I had known it was going to be that good I would have given up my ticket for a tiny pulled pork on a bun and joined you. At least I got some kind person to bring me back a burger to have after my lunch appetizer.

    I will have to organize a bus trip to this restaurant someday.


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