:  994 Queen Street West, Toronto
Website: None

Frankie’s has apparently been around for 35 years.  I say apparently because I had never heard of it before a few weeks ago, and it certainly appears to be a new restaurant.  However, a review at blogTO (which is, oddly, the only thing that pops up when you Google this joint outside of sites like Yelp and Urbanspoon) claims that it is a years-old neighbourhood standby.  Okay, if you say so, blogTO.  I should really make some calls and do some research, but that sounds like a lot of work.  What do I look like, a journalist?

Anyway, a place this mediocre really isn’t worth that much thought or effort.  The restaurant’s sign hilariously proclaims that these are the “world’s best burgers.”  They’re not even Queen Street’s best burgers.

The menu offers two different types of hamburgers: the Frankie’s Original, which the menu describes as having “100% Canadian beef and Frankie’s secret spices,” and the specialty burgers, advertised as being eight ounce burgers made from “Canadian chuck.”

I found it very odd that they advertised the cut of beef that went into the specialty burgers and not the Frankie’s Original, and I was leaning towards getting a specialty burger over the who-knows-what’s-in-it Frankie’s Original; however, the specialty burgers were all so condiment and topping-heavy that I thought I’d never even be able to taste the beef.  So I went with a Frankie’s Original topped with my usual selections (pickles, tomato, and mayo).

A note about the restaurant itself, which is waitress service, so you’ll be sitting there a while: they have TVs on with the volume up.  This isn’t a problem.  They also have a working jukebox.  This is a problem.  I have no problem with a jukebox in theory, but when you’ve got the music coming from the jukebox on one side, and the noise coming from the TV on the other, it can get a bit cacophonous.  A note to the owners of Frankie’s: please pick one or the other.

The service was relatively fast, at least.  The hamburger is, as advertised, a meatloaf burger — though it is thankfully not too strongly seasoned.  This allowed the flavour of the beef itself to come through, which, in this case, wasn’t necessarily a good thing.  The beef had a fairly typical low-quality beef flavour: vaguely funky, and somewhat unpleasant.  Though I’ve had worse, it certainly wasn’t anything I’d want to have again.

The patty also had an oddly mushy texture despite being cooked to well done; I’m thinking that the meat had been too finely ground, and perhaps even had a filler of some sort.

As for the toppings, the pickles were fine, but the tomatoes were mealy enough to warrant removal from my hamburger, and the mayo was not mayo.   It was either Miracle Whip or some house-made concoction; it was cloyingly sweet and completely overwhelming.  I scraped off as much as I could from the bun and the patty.

The fries were okay, but they were a little bit soggy and very greasy, with a stale oil flavour.  It’s likely that they’re using oil that is not quite hot enough, and that needs to be changed.

Frankie's - the outside Frankie's - the restaurant Frankie's - the menu Frankie's - the burger and fries Frankie's - the burger Frankie's - the burger
Frankie's Bar & Cafe on Urbanspoon

7 thoughts on “Frankie’s

  1. Interesting … i found that the burgers are really good in fact some of the best burgers i have ever tried and thats alot. I recommend this place if you want great burgers with a unique twist try the 911 burger amazinnnnnnngggg , i eat there with my friends whenever we are in the neighbourhood. And added bonus they have a nice bar to order drinks its a pretty cool place man. Check them out !

  2. Just back from Frankie’s. Wasn’t sure why we were given knives and forks for a burger order… but that mystery was cleared up with our Con Carne Burgers arrived as we quickly realized that navigating those HUGE and DELICIOUS burgers with just our hands was going to be a challenge. The hand cut fries…. PERFECT. Thanks Jordon for making our first visit to Frankie’s a great experience. We’ll be back to try the breakfast in the very near future.

  3. The burger you ordered seems pretty boring but I tried the Smokin’ Hot Honey. The BBQ sauce was pretty good, but you’re right not the world’s best by far.

    1. I deleted it. It was a personal message for the owners of Frankie’s, so this wasn’t really the place for it. This is a burger review, not a contact form for the restaurant.

  4. The reason the restaurant looks so new is because it was redone in the TV show Restaurant Takeover. Although given your review, I think maybe they shouldn’t have spent all the money to fix it up?

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