Thursday, August 11, 2016

Pete's Place Family Restaurant (closed): 4/5

Chili Burger: 3.6
$11.95 (platter)

Bacon Cheeseburger: 3.5
$10.95 (platter)

$10.95 (platter)

Cheese Burger: 4.2
$9.95 (platter)

When we arrived at Pete’s Place owner Samantha had us setup at one long table in the middle of the restaurant. There was a photo of the five patty Fatboy and she challenged me to finish one – but I’d need a lot more training before tackling that behemoth. As it was I could barely finish the double I ordered. I’m pretty sure their claim of a 5-oz. patty is grossly understated.

Pete’s Place is on top of their game, winning several community choice awards. True to popular opinion, it's nothing fancy, but serves up good food at reasonable prices. Some restaurateurs take the opportunity to expound at length about their creations, but when I asked Samantha she responded with “Burgers are prepared fresh daily, and on busy days twice“ and “Chill is prepared using 100% certified Angus beef and Pete’s own custom blend of spices.“ Plain and simple.

Samantha kept our drinks topped up while patiently waiting for all of our group to arrive so she could put in the orders together. They were well staffed with three in the kitchen including namesake Peter Vlahos on the grill and son Dean prepping and plating. It wasn't much of a wait before Samantha was bringing out all of the meals at once. Impressive!

It’s a classic diner patty. Lean and fairly dry, dense and cooked with a solid grill crust. I thought the burger seasoning salty, but a few diners said the saltiness was from the chili sauce. It's Greek-style - not too spicy. I liked it on the burger and loved it on the fries. Chili sauce is like beer – tastes vary and so did opinions. The Brioche-style bun wasn’t sweet, but light and fluffy with a shiny top. It held up well.

The Fatboy was topped with a heap of shredded iceberg lettuce – easy to bite through. The pickles were spears laid across the patty – admired by some with others pining for the disc form. The tomato was bright red and ripe. Karen wrote “This was a really decent burger. Good taste overall. The patty was firm, great tasting and fairly juicy. I liked their chili sauce, not too salty with a nice mild seasoning. Tomato was fresh and juicy, lettuce chopped fine so not too sloppy and didn't make the burger all slippery. The fries were excellent hot. Caesar salad was super! Lots 'o garlic.”

Mireille had the chili burger – which is a stack doused in chili – all the more impressive as her white dress was still white afterwards. “The meat was a little dry but the chili helped moisten it. It had a little heat - I enjoyed it. The burger held up very well even though it was smothered. Bun was delicious.”

Sandy had a cheeseburger: “The pickle spears were a nice surprise! As was the flavourful patty. Some might find it salty, but salt is my weakness. I'm not always a fan of chili on my burger but this wasn't smothered and helped cut the saltiness - I need to practice balance - begrudgingly. Great garlicky Caesar salad too!

Loved the bacon cheeseburger” wrote Jeff. “Chili and full pickle spears on the burger was a nice surprise. One of the best burger buns I've ever had - held together right to the last bite, and bun:burger ratio was bang on. Crazy amount of fries too!

Burgers come as a platter with soup, salad or fries & coleslaw. All three choices were delicious. The bowl of fresh mushroom soup was thick, flavorful and *huge*. The fries were a hit - crispy outside, soft inside and hot. I had half Caesar salad and half fries. The salad had an enjoyable dressing and a big crunchy crouton for every piece of fresh Romaine.

Burger Clubbers came from far and wide for Pete’s Place. One couple parked their camper across the street and a family drove all the way from Regina stating: “I'd come here again and order the same burger!” Their kids had chicken fingers and fries - a deal at $6.95. The boy said the fries tasted like a burger. The short kids were given colouring books to keep them entertained while the tall kids were amused finding the *four* Pokemon in range of our table.

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