The first rule of Burger Club: Burgers are made of beef. The team of sandwich eating professionals that brought you Winnipeg’s Best Club House, Reuben and Gyro, now embark on a life long quest to find Winnipeg’s best burgers. Yes, burgers – we’re going to rate the best Bacon, Cheese, Chili, Fatboy, Greek and Mushroom burgers. I know what you’re thinking – there are already several lists for Winnipeg’s Best Burger – but we bring the science – we have spreadsheets!
Sonya’s is a little family run restaurant hidden in plain sight at the corner of Henderson and Hart. The entry vestibule is a TARDIS and when you step out the other side you’re in a small town diner in the 1970s - in Czechoslovakia. Steve is a hoot and his humour shows up in the notices posted around the restaurant. The pitcher of water is “Vodka”, knives are "only for boorger, not for fight!" and the soup of the day is always "Good homemade." Steve took orders by table and handed them off to Vera cooking in the kitchen. The food came out in waves and the burger patties were steaming hot off the grill.
There were thirteen burger-clubbers and everyone loved their burger! Everything is home made - even the mayonnaise. Sonya’s burger came in at #2 just behind Charlee’s, received the highest restaurant experience rating, and raised the bar for great value. The owner Steve’s personality makes the whole experience - Sonya’s really is a treasure. The burgers are a good size and the prices are like the décor … wonderfully from the seventies. A Fat Boy is served to you for only $2.60! Sonya’s is at the start of the Disraeli Bridge construction so parking is a bit tricky right now. There are a handful of stalls behind the restaurant if you’re lucky enough to get one.
Everyone had a bacon burger. Well, except April who later said “should have ordered some too. Never hesitate on the bacon!” You have the option of a spicy burger. Get it spicy - it comes with tangy Jalapenos and a Dijon mustard sauce that really adds to the experience without being overpoweringly hot. Also, I think this is one of those "less is more" situations and a single burger offers better flavour balance. The patties are big and I didn’t need the double to satisfy my hunger.
The burger patties were hand-made and had a helluvalot of flavour. They were crispy outside and juicy-moist inside. Nelson said “the whole thing melted in my mouth.” Every cheeseburger came with two slices of cheese! I have a strange affliction - I like the taste of processed cheese and enjoyed the stand out flavour. If you’re not a fan of processed cheese you might be a little sad though. The bacon was perfectly crisp, but a little scarce. Spring for the extra 50 cents and get a second slice for more flavour. Scott commented “Om-nom-nomy! I loved the fresh onions, although my co-workers may have a different opinion.” The bun needed warming but did its duty - with sesame seeds on top!
Brett described the fries as “limp, not crispy - like rectangular mashed potatoes with gravy.” Cary ate all the table fries at Table #2 so I guess he was a fan. Cary also ate Kari’s burger (as well as his own) so hopefully that makes up for getting stiffed at the great Black Sheep debacle last week.
There’s a splendid tool calendar by the cash register upholding that age old tradition of beautiful buxom bikini bound babes beholding bandsaws. Steve pointed out that Ms. October is his cousin and Ms. November is his sister. I like Steve.