Montecito is the brainchild of Canadian-born director Ivan Reitman (who also had a strong hand in the TIFF Lightbox around the corner). That said, the question is whether it’s more Ghostbusters, or My Super-Ex Girlfriend. Twins, or Six Days Seven Nights?
I’d heard good things about the burger (which is described simply on the menu as “milk bun, bacon, fontina”), so I had high hopes.
I won’t lie — I got pretty excited when the hamburger showed up. It was picture perfect: glistening patty, toppings just so, and a perfectly proportionate bun (with the sesame seeds so evenly spaced it looked like they were placed individually). It’s easily one of the most immaculate looking burgers I’ve been served recently. It was photoshoot-ready.
I got a little bit less impressed when I cut into the burger, revealing a well done patty that was fully gray from edge to edge.
I got even less impressed when I took a bite. Certainly, it’s not a bad hamburger, but it’s sort of like meeting someone who’s supermodel-attractive, only for them to turn out to be a hardcore Trump supporter. You might be able to make it work for a while, but there’s no future there and you know it.
I will say that the patty, despite how well done it was (and it was cooked right to the very edge of well done) remained somewhat juicy; they must have actually started with beef with an appropriate fat ratio, which is always delightful. But the patty was very tightly packed, so it was a little bit too tough, despite its juiciness.
It also didn’t have much of a beefy flavour, though in that regard the very salty toppings were a pretty serious impediment. Between the salty cheese, the salty bacon, the mayo, and the seasoning on the patty itself, it’s salt overload. It makes it nearly impossible to taste the beef, which doesn’t exactly have an assertive flavour to start with.
The buttery toasted bun was mostly pretty great, though I think it was toasted for a few seconds too long, giving the surface a bit more of an in-your-face crunch than you want on a hamburger.
It’s too bad, because seriously, look at that thing. That looks like it should be the best burger ever, but a few serious hiccups hold it back from being anything much better than good.
It comes with a side of salad and a small bowl of house-made chips, both of which were quite tasty.