Sunday, June 10, 2007

Best Burger in the 204



Consistently ranked Winnipeg's Best Burger ever: VJ's Drive In has been a beacon of greasy light to the hungry, tired and wobbly since 1958.

Sheena cannot leave the YWG without her usual: Burger with Just Chili with Fries in a Box. VJ's is known for the Special, but I have my own needs and do not stray from what works for me. Since Sheena's first visit in 1984 they have only fucked up my order one time. And it was still good.

Always order the Fries in a box. Not a bag. They are always right out of the fryer, so it is the blast of cold air that makes them crunchy. Fries get soggy when they don't get proper airing out after getting scooped out of the hot oil. It's a fact.

Milkshakes, if I recall back to those heady crazy days when Sheena lived in a basement suite with a sunroof down the block from VJ's, are great, but lactose sensitivities and my respect for my fellow human make me reluctant to indulge these days.

A Sikh guy I used to know was convinced that the special ingredient that makes the VJ burger so good is garam masala. Sheena has no idea if it is true.

Eat outside at the picnic table, or in the car if it is raining. Cash Only.

16 Comments:

At 8:29 PM, Anonymous spy said...

looks un-nutrious but delicious

 
At 8:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

VJs RULES. Nothing like a good cholesterol kick at lunchtime on a Friday (if you have enough time to wait in the lineup!)

 
At 8:18 AM, Anonymous Fenderbender said...

is that true about the fries? I have a friend with a deep fryer and our fries rarely get that crispy crunch that I so adore... so, right into the fridge or what?

 
At 9:29 AM, Blogger Leatherhands said...

Tempting Fries shot. About twice a year, I'll go to my old drunk-with-my high school friends burger joint (Steer Inn...Corner of Yonge and Major Mac. in Richmond Hill)and step into a time machine. (So my Dad's house, but that's another story...)
Best part? The SAME FUCKING GUYS WORKING THE COUNTER. Apparently, the owner retired about 15 years ago, so they all pooled their money together and bought it. They're just larger, more bloated and wrinkly versions of the same guys I used to see in beer-o-ramic vision.
The same stuff, especially the doughnut sized onion rings, deep fried to a glistening golden sheen. Smother in vinegar and salt and enjoy guilt-free. (Ignore the purple and green zits that form on your neck and back...they evntually fade...)

 
At 3:00 PM, Anonymous sooey said...

I don't have a special burger or favourite burger establishment. We used to go to the Purple Lantern in the Sault for french fries and gravy, though, after a night of drinking draft at 25 cents/glass.

 
At 4:15 PM, Blogger Jason Bo Green said...

Being somewhat dissatisfied with Queen and Palmerston's "Hero Burger", this really looks like the kind of place I must visit.

And I had no idea about the french fries - amazing. I really don't care for soggy fries, it's the crunch that makes it. Thanks!

 
At 4:16 PM, Blogger Jason Bo Green said...

Wow Leatherhands - that's amazing. I love that - it's like a sitcom.

 
At 9:01 PM, Blogger Sheena said...

I was semi bullshitting about the french fries, but I think I'm on to something that is worth testing. I think I meant Beaver Tails - when you eat them outside in the winter they go from doughy to supercrispy with one gust of arctic wind.

The french fry thing was less about the cold than the condensation that forms off the steam when kep constrained in a bag. But I will test the cold hypothesis further now that I think about it.

 
At 9:17 PM, Blogger Beast said...

Sunroof fixed by a guy with a huge coinslot using his comb to apply that swirl effect to plaster. Good times....good times.

 
At 9:18 PM, Blogger Beast said...

For really great fries (you can take it from me because I have a chunky husband) pre-fry until fries are soft. Remove them and let them sit on paper towel or newspaper until cool. Then put them back into the oil.

 
At 9:34 PM, Blogger Sheena said...

I remember the comb. Used for swirling wet ceiling plaster OR his delish pompadour. A multitasker and credit to the care-taking community.

And very tolerant when talking down the messed up chicks in the basement who forgot to open windows while using oil-based paint to touch up the bathroom.

 
At 11:17 PM, Blogger Jason Bo Green said...

Hm, condensation - you're right. Wow.

Interesting theory - well worth a test. And a follow-up post, for sure.

I just came from a birthday party where everyone was like 20 years old. It was really trying.

 
At 12:54 AM, Blogger Beast said...

OH MY GOD!!! I forgot all about that. We were so sick. I barely have any memory of that event. All I can recall is rollering our legs and laughing like idiots after drinking way too much cheap wine. Then I yacked in the parking lot. Pretty much how every evening ended back then! Once again - good times...good times.

 
At 12:33 PM, Blogger pumpernickel said...

Just to change the subject a little, how is your burger different from a standard Winnipeg `Fat Boy"?

 
At 10:13 AM, Blogger Sheena said...

OOH... nice catch, Pumpernickel.

I think if we trace the lineage of the greasy burger in Winnipeg, all roads ultimately points back to Juniors. When it busted as a chain, the individual locations usually carried on the tradition under their own names, and I am pretty sure VJ's started out there.

The Junior's across from the University of Winnipeg sustained me well...

 
At 9:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm - had one of them cheeseburgers with chili and pickles only today for lunch today and some of those yummy fries and I still don't feel hungry at 8:30 in the evening. Your money goes a long way!

 

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