Friday, 27 November 2015

Boon Burger Gets It Right in Downtown Barrie

Bathrooms - you never know when you'll need one, until you need one! Janis took her 8 year old son downtown for the annual Barrie Santa Claus parade, and in the middle of all the hoopla, the young man realized that he needed to visit a rest room soon. The two visited more than one downtown business in search of a toilet, but somewhat understandably, they were refused - no purchase, no potty! Janis, hoping to travel light, hadn't brought her purse to the event, so buying anything anywhere was not going to happen. Finally, one business did take a chance on the boy and his mom and let them use their facilities. Janis decided right there that Boon Burger was going to have her as a customer in the very near future.

Janis posted the details of her mini adventure on her social media, which naturally led to some interesting discussion, and it put a positive light on this local business. Some readers, myself included, had been meaning to try Boon Burger since it opened in August of last year. I'm really not sure why it has taken me this long to drop into Boon Burger. In any case, a lunch date was made and I began to look forward to the much anticipated chat and bite with Janis.

In preparation for lunch, I studied Boon Burger's menu online. I know, I know - who studies for lunch?? As a borderline vegetarian (fish and chips will forever prevent my full conversion ), my normal habit is to scan any given menu for the few dishes that I can eat and then I order one of those. But what if the entire menu is made up of foods that I can eat ... what then? How do I choose? A strange but welcome problem for me.

Janis and I met up on Dunlop St. and arrived at Boon together. Their Barrie eatery is light, open, minimally decorated and, with its plain wooden booth benches, seems almost unfinished. Not unfinished because they ran out of time or money, but unfinished because it required nothing more. No bleached white dinner napkins to be seen either, just a very large roll of brown paper towel on each table. Natural, pure, authentic - that is the vibe that I got.

We were greeted immediately and handed menus. We were invited to sit anywhere we liked and asked if we had ever been in before. That is an excellent question to ask. Many restaurants seem to have a multi-step menu system (choose your protein, choose your bread, choose your toppings, choose your side dish) lately, and it can be a bit of a learning curve for the new customer. Aha - see why I studied ahead of time?

There are many reasons why someone might choose to follow a plant based diet. Some of my more carnivorous friends might say that one of those reasons must surely be madness, after all how can one not crave bacon, poutine, and hamburgers? Nobody ever said we don't. So I had a very special treat on my visit to Boon Burger - a bacun cheeze burger. Actually, my spell checker is working perfectly fine - this is a vegan friendly, equally tasty substitute for a beef burger topped with bacon and cheese. A win win situation, I'm thinking.

Janis got her eye on the Greek Burger on the special of the day chalkboard. Like Greek salad? You will love this! Each of us ordered a side of sesame-potato fries. Janis also got a pumpkin soft serve, a lovely peachy coloured type of shake, and I opted for house made berry iced tea.

Our food arrived in no time at all, as two wide baskets came with towering burgers, accompanied by fries. We both studied our meals, trying to decide how best to attack these mile-high sandwiches. We could see thick patties, loads of toppings and plenty of soft bun around it. Next we unrolled a few lengths of the paper towel - this is going to get messy!

And messy it was. It was a good kind of messy, not any sort of first date kind of messy, we decided, but then again if he doesn't mind that you have dropped some lettuce and organic mustard into your cleavage, he might just be a keeper! We joked that perhaps bibs should be handed out to customers, or maybe some bath towels. We chatted, we laughed, we mopped our messy faces and ate some very delicious food at Boon Burger that afternoon.