Chili Hamburger Bar, Montreal

Any foodie who made it through the recession without having lost the ability to dine in new places knows very well what kept the restaurant industry going through the last few months: burgers. And I’m not talking about any old dried out slab of ground meat… I mean fancy burgers: gilded Angus patties streaming with blue cheese; free-range succulent ground sirloin crowned with foie gras; or kobe beef kissed with truffles and smokey bacon. So now that the recession is ostensibly over, and we no longer have to cultivate a culinary sense of hedonism by masking otherwise plebeian ingredients as elite, what will be the new dining trend?

Well, according to the Montreal dining scene of late, the answer to said question is yet another query: why change a good thing? Upscale burger spots continue to generate buzz-worthy business and the newest ground beef outpost, Chili Hamburger Bar, is functionally equipped to make the place work, even if it is part and parcel of a recognizable trend. At the same time, in addition to its vast build-your-own burger menu (or “burger bar”), which may or may not be the new Montreal restaurant’s main draw, Chili earns its right in the resto scene regardless of the craze.

Aside from the über tempting burger combinations, like the European hamburger with brie, prosciutto and sundried tomatoes, the Chili card features comfort stalwart, the barbecued pulled pork sandwich, bistro style steak frites and a daily fresh fish. Still, the additional menu items don’t overshadow the burger as focus but rather give the humble sandwich a justifiable context to be termed “fancy.”

But, make no mistake, Chili Hamburger Bar does not go out of its way to create an overripe atmosphere. The exposed brick space, featuring a horseshoe shaped maple bar, a collection of flatscreens, and a warm auburn pallet, is cool enough for the downtown crowd but convivial enough to actually remain popular.

In other words, sorry vegetarians you’re going to have to sit back and wait for tofurky sandwiches to be the hot new trend.

Address: 1260 Rue Mackay Montreal, QC
Contact: 514-564-0285
Cuisine: Comfort Food
Area: Downtown
Venue: Restaurant, Bar
Hours: Daily: 10:30 – Close
Price Range: $$$ (Within Reach)
Payment: Master Card, Visa, American Express, Debit

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