Wednesday, February 20, 2013

the new kid in town

Well it's that time Halifax. Time to welcome the newest member to the gourmet burger scene. After months of renovating and playing the inevitable permit game, The Works is finally opening it's doors. What's even cooler though is their first day is going all to charity. Yup, you read right. This Thursday from 11-2 and 5-8 stop by The Works with a cash or food donation to Feed Nova Scotia and get yourself a free meal. It's a win win situation. And just how incredibly cool is it that their first day of profits are going to a local charity that feeds people. Pretty damn cool indeed.

slick design
Despite it being the first outside of Ontario, I'm well acquainted with The Works, hitting it up every time we're in Ottawa. But I know what you're all thinking. Another burger place, really? First off, it's downtown, an entirely different area than the other burger hot spots. Secondly, there are a few things that set it apart from other burger joints in town. Perhaps the biggest, it's got table service. With a menu of 70 different burgers and 420 possible combinations, counter service would most certainly mean the longest lines of all time. Cheers to sitting down, ordering up a beer or one of their ridiculous milkshakes, and perusing the menu. Ok, more like hankering down to read a novel sized menu! Furthermore, it's got mad style. Because The Works is a franchise, the brand and decor is consistent at all its locations. But that does not make it any less cool. In fact, the industrial design was one of the first things I fell in love with. I'm not saying there aren't other cool spots in Hali but c'mon, exposed ductwork, brick, metal, wood, cool lighting, branded tables, thoughtful murals, personal touches. Instant atmosphere. This is exactly what a thriving downtown needs. 

it's all in the details
personal touches
But what about the food? First of all, good luck deciding. The menu is astronomical and everything sounds delish. A burger with pb and cream cheese? Go for it. My girl Kathy actually swears by it. How bout a burger with KD on it? Yes, I said it. Kraft dinner on a burger. There's worldly burgers, cheesy burgers, spicy burgers, saucy burgers, veg loaded burgers, burgers exploding with meat and chilli and anything else your lil' heart desires. If choice is what you want, you've got it. Six different patty options, three buns including gluten free, numerous sides, and a ton of burger upgrades. I think they've thought of everything. I can't say I've ever had a bad burger at The Works (nor the same burger twice!) and yesterday's press launch at the new Hali location was no different. That bad boy right there is the Beaver Bank, named by one of our own. Oozing with caramelized onions, chipotle ketchup, havarti and loads of double smoked bacon, it was nothing short of awesome. Lia, the Food Wife, had another locally named burger, the Shipbuilder's Dream, piled high with avocado, bacon and gouda. She even added a lil chipotle mayo for that extra smokey kick. We had also both decided on the elk burger which was flavourful and moist despite its leaner cut.  With some spicy die-cut chips, sweet potato fries and a load of dipping options, we went to town. And devour we did. 

If the success of The Works brand, the line ups at the Ottawa locations I've been to or the passion of owners Alan and Jody are any indication, The Works Halifax is here to stay. So, tomorrow grab some cash or non perishable food for Feed NS and head on down to 5431 Doyle St to welcome the new kid in town. Then start planning your next visit.