take the cowburger challenge


Why are these guys so happy? Let me explain.

We’re sitting in the Northside strip mall.

This is the plaza where Dinardo’s and Urban Terrace (RIP) used to be.

The Urban Terrace is alive and kicking! It has moved to the next level via a more flexible business model – various pop-up locations around the city and other strategies.


Too bad the Urban Terrace bit the dust – it was Bells Corners’ coolest store, exactly the sort of creative, non-chain, top-quality business that makes us unique.

It’s not surprising that the Urban Terrace is now six feet under. It had everything going for it except location – Northside used to Bells Corners’ main street, but now it’s just a little rump road and has been written off by the BIA bigwigs.

Drive-thru traffic never ventures off the strip and the BIA’s marketing efforts are focussed on the big boys on the main drag.

Luckily for Miki, the reasonable rents in the forlorn Northside plaza and his low overhead allow him to take on both the big fat food chains and the chip wagons. More and more residents are discovering that a Mikiburger is arguably just as delicious as the Veraburger (at a fraction of the cost), and twice as delicious as the mediocre thawed-heat-lamp cowburgers served up by the big chains on the strip.

So that’s why Miki looks so happy in the photo at the top – business is good and his $3.99 breakfast special is quickly gaining a reputation as Bells Corners Best Breakfast. But what about the guy above – why was he so jolly? First of all, he was really enjoying his “two-for-one burgers” ($5.25 for the pair) at Miki’s – he fancies himself as a burger connoisseur and he gave the Mikiburger five stars.

He also really enjoyed going door-to-door in Bells Corners trying to get people to replace their Direct Energy water heaters with more efficient, less expensive models. He particularly enjoyed doing streets in Lynwood Village (“such a lovely neighbourhood”) where many people took the time to listen to his pitch.

The Bells Corners Celebrity Burger-eating Contest will be held at Miki’s next week. Inspired by the recent Bells Corners Celebrity Pie-eating Contest it will feature five contestants sampling five unidentified Bells Corners burgers. The winner of the cash prize is the person who matches up the most burgers with their provenance. There will be a Mikiburger, a Veraburger, a Bells Corners chip wagon burger, a chain burger and a Bells Corners restaurant burger.

If you’d like to enter (it’s FREE!) just comment on this blog or send me an email. Priority will be given to celebrities (media personalities, journalists, career politicians, hockey players), but ordinary fun-loving folk can apply too. The day and time will be mutually agreed upon by the five lucky contestants.

The Bells Corners Celebrity Burger-eating Contest is sponsored by Miki’s, bellscorners.wordpress.com and my mom, who gave the $2.63 (two-for-one price) Mikiburger five stars, noting the fresh ingredients, the delicious sauce, the friendly service and the fact that it came on a real plate instead of single-use styrofoam, waxed paper or cardboard.

She gave the Veraburger four stars (“delicious but too pricey for a teen, a minimum-wage slave or a senior on a pension”) and the Harvey’s three stars (“good burgers but the owner’s too crabby”).

She gives the A&W in the Bayshore mall two stars (“nothing special”) and the McDonald’s a half-star (“tastes like sweet sawdust”).

I give the Crotteburger three stars.

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2 Responses to take the cowburger challenge

  1. margaret says:

    just had Freshco’s 1/2 lb burgers … now they’re BIG burgers … about an inch thick, stayed juicy and filled the bun … just hate it when they end up half the original size and all you have is bun

    – So far only one celebrity has signed up for the Bells Corners Burger-eating contest, so please consider yourself invited.

    Contestant #1:

    “Is this an “eating” contest (speed, quantity, etc.) or a tasting contest (best burger)? If the former, you might want to reconsider such an unhealthy promotion. If the latter, count me in.”

    – It’s neither a speed nor a tasting contest. It’s more low-key than that. My idea is that the contest is to match the burger with its provenance.

    All the burgers will be stripped of their packaging, cut into five parts (hmmm, that might be tricky) and presented on identical plates.

    The five contestants have to guess where they came from, eg. burger #1 – Eastside Mario’s, #2 – Miki’s, #3, Harvey’s, #4- Vera’s, #5 – Starfries

    But I’m betting no one will get a perfect score, even if there are only five possibilities to choose from (should there be ten?).

    Contestants are of course free to comment on the burgers, giving both positive and negative feedback, but this contest is for FUN, so we’re not interested in hurting anyone’s feelings (and bottom line) by trashing their burgers.

    Contestants’ anonymity will be protected – of course I want some fodder for my blog out of this but I pledge to not use any photos without the EXPLICIT permission of the people concerned. I show you the photo and then, if you like it, you give me permission to put it on the blog. Or not – no problem. I won’t reveal names either.

    You’re the first person to apply for the position, Contestant #1, but as far as I’m concerned you’re IN (unless people even more famous than you want to participate).

    No cost involved – I’ll buy the five burgers if the burgermeisters don’t want to donate them.

    I’m pretty sure Miki is on board 100%, but we could hold this community event anywhere.

    I just like promoting him because he’s a funny guy and he has a hard row to hoe.

    The cash prize to the winner is just a token $5 or whatever.

    Contestants will be asked to wear funny hats, but all of the rules are negotiable.

    Is there a particular day and time next week that works for you?

  2. margaret says:

    went to try your fav fries this afternoon … they were closed by 4.30!!!
    had to go and see our old fav Bingo (sp) instead

    – I’m undecided as to the best Bells Corners fries. I like Starfries just because the people are so friendly, the location is great and lots of locals seem to like the food. But then the Binh-go fries have many fans too. And Bells Corners third chip wagon is also very popular. And let’s not forget Miki’s – his fries are just as fresh as chip wagon fries, and definitely WAY better than chain fries or restaurant fries.

    If the Bells Corners Celebrity Burger-eating Contest (to be held at Miki’s on Northside near the defunct Urban Terrace) is a success maybe a fry contest should be next, or maybe a slice contest.

    We only have one committed celebrity contestant so far for the burger contest (and two maybes – Andy Haydon and Randall Denley), so we need more contestants (hint, hint). If we don’t get a couple of more volunteers by Wednesday I may have to start twisting arms.

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