Friday, September 19, 2008

Jetsun Juicyburger

Had a craving for burgers today and once again I tried a new place. I'd heard some good things about Jetsun Juicyburger (1900 Eglinton Ave East) so I gave it a shot. My brother was in attendance as well as he was interested in my choice this afternoon.

Upon entering it's a funky looking little diner. The quarters are pretty tight as the location isn't all that large and they've managed to squeeze in as many seats as possible.

There is a $0.50 discount if you order a side and a drink so we both took Jetsun up on their offer. I had a Cadillac (burger with cheese and bacon $5.99 while the bro had a Juicyburger $3.99). I'll briefly talk about the sides in a sec, I'm concentrating on the burgers today.

The first thing I noticed was that an employee was weighing out ice cream for their milkshakes and placing it into cups (I'm assuming to expedite the process when a shake is ordered). I thought this was odd, It doesn't take that long to scoop some ice cream and weigh it on order does it? Secondly, I noticed that when we ordered our burgers, they were par cooked and were taken out of a stainless steel pan full of liquid on the grill. Yep, I said it, par-cooked!

The topping process of your burger works a lot like a Canadian chain (Lick's) down to the Post-It note on your wrapper. The toppings looked impressive and I can see they're trying for freshness, a good sign.

Our par-cooked burgers only took a minute or two to finish so we picked up our sides (fries and a strawberry shake for the bro, poutine and a large Diet Coke for me) and headed out.

The burgers themselves were just ok. The patties have little filler and Jetsun appears to be striving for quality. They don't appear to be hand formed (note the smooth edges in the pics below). I found mine to be moist but the bro thought his was a little dry. I had added cheddar and bacon to mine for an additional $2.00 but couldn't taste either. The cheddar slice and the bacon were very thin. My lower bun was either over toasted or stale. It was hard and made the burger difficult to eat. A peeve of mine is when a burger place tears into your burger to make sure it's cooked. Doing this lets all the juices run out of it! Additionally, tearing at it breaks the patty in half and lets the halves slip around while you're trying to eat the burger. The par cooking was inexcusable! Busy or not, if you're promoting freshness on your signage, par-cooking your burgers seems an oxymoron.

The bro said his shake was pretty thin but did have a chunk of ice cream at the bottom of his cup. It was probably just a case of the counter person rushing the process and not giving the mixer enough time. I am pretty sure the fries are prepackaged and they need to work on their cooking method. The fry cook needs to ensure they're not overloading the fry basket because the fries aren't getting enough space and the oil temperature drops too much. This results in an oily fry. Additionally, the fries could use a little longer in the fryer. They have done a decent job with their poutine, it's typical packaged beef gravy but at least they use real curds.

To Jetsun's credit, they are trying. They use Kawartha Dairy ice cream (a favourite of mine) and machine mix their shakes. Their toppings are fresh and attractive. They use real curds on their poutine and real cheddar for their burgers which is a plus!

The negatives were using par-cooked patties, charging $1 each for bacon and cheese and not being able to taste either on the burger, their fries need work and they need to keep their buns from going hard.

My order was $11 after taxes and the bro's was close to $9. For this price I'd expect a premium burger, unfortunately I didn't find my lunch worth the money I spent.

Author's note: We didn't get a shot of the poutine as the curds had melted by the time we got to the bro's house and taking a photo wouldn't have done the poutine justice or been fair to Jetsun.

1 comment:

Mike said...

I'm the Brother..

I agree on almost every point made..

Par-cooking is a travesty.

Despite our lackluster experience, I'd be willing to try them again, although not at lunchtime on a Friday afternoon.