Free House Burger
(add $1 for Cheese, $1.50 for bacon)
"At the Freehouse, our goal is to consistently provide quality food and service in a self-expressive and creative atmosphere. People are our greatest asset. The Freehouse is community-driven and encourages people to "Think Globally, Act Locally". The Freehouse creates a spontaneous and dynamic environment, where a sense of freedom is welcomed. Social interaction is encouraged and embraced. The Freehouse appeals to any age, gender, status or cultural background. The Freehouse is about a way of thinking."
(Photo credits to Josh Thompson of the Martlet)
I would have felt more at home if I had dreaded my hair and smoked a fatty, but it still amazes me how at home I felt after I walked into the Spadina Free House, between seminars during the 71st Annual Canadian University Press Conference in Saskatoon this past week. Located just next door to the beautiful Sheraton Cavalier Hotel, where I was staying during the conference, the Free House first caught my attention when the "free thinking" CUP organizer announced to the masses that he would be giving away coupons worth $2 off any pizza sold at the restaurant. So, myself, along with another Nexus writer and two Martlet delegates, walked into the restaurant, and quickly realized we would not be spending fourteen dollars on a small pizza just to get $2 off. I have to admit, the stone cooked, thin crust, paltry topping route did maintain my interests for a few split seconds until I noticed a burger on the menu, and decided to plant some Victoria Burger Blog seeds in the town of a thousand bridges.
Here you have a nicely toasted bun, with an oily crispness that would have been perfect if the patty had been a tad bigger, or the bun had been a tad smaller. The simple topping combination of mayo on the top bun, and a dollop of mustard on the bottom, give this charbroiled patty a backyard barbeque feel, as the thick strips of bacon draped the burger, and helped this unit hold together. The beef patty alone was a little dry, and could have used some seasoning, but the char on the patty did give it a tad bit of sweetness which was quite pleasant, and very reminiscent of Jiggers Grill's famous beef burger in Campbell River, B.C. Having said that, the Free House cannot justify charging almost 14 dollars, after taxes and adding bacon+cheese, for a simpleton burger that is enjoyable but not mid-teen dollar worthy, like the Aura or Glo Burgers for instance.
Verdict: I heard there was a Fuddruckers in Saskatoon!