Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Montreal Burger Report: Méchant Boeuf Bar & Brasserie Part 3


Méchant Boeuf Bar & Brasserie Part 3 (11:58); (MP3 18MB / FLAC 64MB / Ogg Vorbis 10MB / Stream)


Ed's Verdict

The room was too dark and too loud for my liking, but I know that some people seem to like that. Clearly, the very noisy people all around us where having a great time. However, we were there for the burgers, and I'm sad to report I was disappointed. The Méchant Burger is like something conceived on a white board by a marketing committee instead of by cooks in the kitchen. In other words, it looks good on paper but fails when executed.

For example, the proportions were all wrong, with the patty shaped more like a baseball than a hockey puck -- making it hard to eat and necessitating a long cooking time (because they won't cook them rare). The result is a ball of overcooked meat that's hard to cram into your pie hole.

It comes with caramelized onions, bacon, and two kinds of cheese (blue and gruyère). That all sounds great, but the blue cheese was very pungent and it overpowered everything -- even the bacon! Finally, it comes garnished with arugula. I love arugula, but it wilts very easily. When you put it on a burger all you end up with is limp stringy leaves that get stuck in your teeth. Oh, but it's arugula, so it sounds good in theory.

This burger should have been very good. And it could still be if they followed these bits of advice: (1) ditch the blue cheese -- or, to satisfy those blue cheese fanatics, make it a choice of blue or gruyère, but not both; (2) Re-shape the burger so it has the dimensions of a hockey puck instead of a baseball; (3) lose the arugula -- or put it on the side dressed with a bit of olive oil and white balsamic vinegar and a scratch of Parmesano Reggiano cheese.

But as-is, I cannot recommend it.

Zeke's Verdict

In short; it's bad. I didn't like it, nor was I able to finish it, which was not due to my being full and wanting a doggy bag.

In long; While I'm certain everyone at Méchant Boeuf is nice, sincere and has the best of intentions, when they get together to serve a hamburger despite their 'best intentions' it doesn't work out like they expected.

1. The music is too loud, both when it is played live or when it is pre-recorded and played over the sound system. This would be fine in a discotheque, but most of the time when I am dining, I like to converse with my companions - loud music makes that extremely difficult.

2. They advertise themselves as having the 'best burger in town.' However they only have one burger on the menu. While I'm all in favor of breaking with tradition, tradition states that if you serve burgers, you serve at least a small selection of (two, or three, or four) different types of burgers. Variations on a theme if you will. Only serving one kind of hamburger smack of fascism. I don't know anyone who likes fascism.

3. Speaking of the burger; it was overdone, dry, the flavor of the 'blue' cheese overpowered just about every other flavor and while I am not as dead set against a tall burger as Ed is, it wasn't a fun burger to eat.

4. In their defense, they do have a nice selection of beers, and there are lots of other things on the menu besides hamburgers.

Méchant Boeuf Bar & Brasserie
124 rue St. Paul West, Old Montreal. (See clickable map, below.)
Phone: 514-788-4020
Web site:

View The Montreal Burger Report Map in a larger map

(The Montreal Burger Report: Méchant Boeuf Bar & Brasserie Part 1. The Montreal Burger Report: Méchant Boeuf Bar & Brasserie Part 2.)