Location: 4100 Dixie Road, Mississauga
The Beyond Burger at Tim Hortons is way better than it has any right to be. Is it particularly good? No, not really. Would I order it again? Absolutely not. But it’s perfectly acceptable. It’s not gross.
Maybe that’s a low bar. But Tim Hortons isn’t exactly known for having an appetizing lunch selection. And their last foray into the fake meat game — the Beyond Sausage breakfast sandwich — featured an impressive emulation of actual meat, but was otherwise pretty lousy.
Beyond Meat has clearly been evolving their product since I tried the Beyond burger at A&W last summer. I found that one to be off-puttingly mushy. The texture of the burger I just had at Tim’s was much, much better.
If you compare it to a good quality burger, it’s pretty much garbage. But! It actually compares quite favourably to the frozen burgers that are served all over the city. If I had eaten it blind, that’s what I would have assumed it was. It’s impressive.
In fact, I think I might have liked this a bit better than that type of frozen burger; those ones sometimes have a gamy, off meat flavour that’s a bit off-putting. This one, on the other hand, has a generic meaty flavour that’s not unpleasant. Again, it’s not particularly good, but it’s not bad either. It’s fine.
They top it with cheese (which isn’t melted, of course), lettuce, tomato, ketchup, and mustard, which successfully covers up the patty’s lack of a beefy flavour. Between the assertive condiments and the impressively accurate cheap burger texture, you’d never know that you’re not eating a lousy (but real!) hamburger. I know that’s not exactly high praise, but I’m actually really impressed.
Location: 100 City Centre Drive, Mississauga (inside Square One)
If the only cinnamon rolls you’re familiar with are the doughy and diabetes-inducing ones they serve at Cinnabon, Danish-style cinnamon rolls (a.k.a. kanelsnegl) are going to come as something of a shock. It’s like comparing “Macho Man” Randy Savage to Daniel Day Lewis. They’re both entertainers, but that’s about where the similarities end.
The kanelsnegl at Brod is solid. The pastry is quite nice — it’s flaky and a bit buttery, with crispy outer ring that eventually gives way to a softer, sweeter interior.
It’s a little bit bland, however; the pastry itself doesn’t have a ton of flavour, and the cinnamon/sugar level is probably a notch or two more restrained than it needs to be.
I know it’s not fair, but I couldn’t help but compare it to the kanelsnegls I had on a recent trip to Copenhagen, and there’s no contest. Those ones featured a much better balance of sweetness, with the pastry itself being downright magical.
Still, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with what they’re serving at Brod. It’s not amazing, but it’s very good.
Location: 1520 Aimco Boulevard, Mississauga
The Bacon Jalapeno Chicken Sandwich from Wendy’s has pretty much everything I like in a fast food sandwich; it’s got gooey cheese (with both a melty cheese slice and cheese sauce), bacon, jalapenos, crispy fried onions, pickled jalapeno slices, and a smoky japaleno sauce.
So yeah, it’s good. They’d have to work pretty hard to mess it up.
The worst part about this chicken sandwich is, funnily enough, the chicken. The sandwich features their Spicy Chicken patty, and they keep it in one of those warming drawers (AKA the fast food ruiner).
So it’s dry, of course. It’s also a little bit too salty, and thoroughly infused with a vaguely unpleasant processed flavour.
The toppings are so abundant, however, that it’s barely even an issue. I only had one or two bites that weren’t crammed with stuff.
You’ve got the richness from the cheeses, crispiness from the fried onions, zestiness from the sauce, a nice meaty bite from the bacon, and a good amount of acidity from the jalapenos to help cut through the sandwich’s richness. It’s quite tasty.
It also has a decent kick to it — it’s nothing too aggressive, but for something from a fast food joint, it’s not bad.
Location: 5101 Dixie Road, Mississauga
There’s nothing quite like a veal sandwich. It’s just a whole bunch of fried veal and rich tomato sauce in a hearty bun. It’s probably not something you want to be eating on a regular basis (unless you’re keen on getting a massive heart attack), but every now and then it has to happen. It’s pure, unadulterated comfort food.
My go-to is California Sandwiches, but a location of San Francesco recently opened near me, so I figured I’d give them a shot.
You can choose from all kinds of toppings for an additional fee, but I went with the basic sandwich and ordered it spicy, which meant it came with a generous amount of blazing-hot jalapenos.
The thing that stands out the most about the sandwich is how incredibly tender the veal is; it might just be the most tender veal I’ve ever had in a sandwich like this. Your teeth glide right through it like butter. It’s amazing.
The exterior is moderately crispy, but not quite enough to hold up to the sauce — it sogs up almost instantly. It’s not quite as good as California Sandwiches in that regard.
Speaking of California Sandwiches, I think their sauce is marginally better; the sauce here is quite tasty, but it feels like the flavour could (and should) be amped up by a notch or two.
I think California has the overall superior sandwich, but it’s very, very close.
The sizes are a bit funny. They have two sizes: baby and regular. I ordered the regular, and my dining companion ordered the baby. As it turns out, I (and anyone with a normal-sized appetite) would be perfectly happy with the baby. Regular is enormous. Baby should really be called regular, and regular should be called jumbo.
Location: 100 City Centre Drive, Mississauga (inside Square One)
I love butter tarts, but they’re one of those things that I’m sometimes wary to order; when they’re tasty they’re very tasty, but they can easily be throat-burningly sweet.
But I had specifically heard that the tarts at Abbey’s are quite good, so it seemed like a safe enough bet.
They’re not just good. They’re great. I’m not sure if they’re quite on the level of the Maids’ Cottage in Newmarket, which serves my favourite butter tarts in the GTA, but they’re clearly way above average.
The filling is sweet but not too sweet, with a rich caramelized flavour and a nice gooey consistency. The crust is great too — it’s buttery and shortbready, and compliments the sweet filling perfectly.
The crust-to-filling ratio is also on point. This can easily trip up a lesser butter tart, but here the balance is just right — there’s enough crust to offset the sweet filling, but not so much that it dominates. It’s delicious.