Address: 79 Sherbrook St.
The recent launch of Boon Burger Café means Winnipeg is first in the nation to have its own all-vegetarian burger joint.
Since opening in June, this West End cafe, and its nine gourmet veggie burgers, has become a favourite amongst vegans and meat lovers alike.
Bringing gourmet meatless burgers to Winnipeg is the work of Boon’s husband-and-wife team Anneen DuPlessis and Thomas Sohlberg. The couple acted on a hunch— the veggie burger might just be the perfect crossover food to convert avowed meat eaters to the green side. They executed a winning formula pairing wholesome, fresh ingredients with innovative flavours. Recipes that incorporate obscure ingredients, like nutritional yeast and Braggs soy seasoning, deliver some novel tastes. Patties made with brown rice, legumes and soy are adorned with fresh, unexpected toppings, spices, and sauces without a hint of animal products.
The signature Boon burger offers a classic meat-tasting patty made of mushrooms, brown rice, tofu, and oats. Dressed in sweet and sticky peach chutney, the Boon can become a “bacon” burger by adding a slice of smoked soy.
The Buddha burger is a soy-free, curried chickpea patty, dressed with creamy vegan mayonnaise, cool cucumber sauce and garden veggies. The crisp patty bursts with a moist, aromatic curried centre. For a taste of Greece, the “chicken” patty, is smeared with tangy black olive tapanade and sprinkled with crumbled “feta,” a.k.a. tofu cloaked in oregano, garlic, black pepper and lemon juice.
Everything on the menu is housemade, except for gluten-free buns baked by Lorenzo’s Specialty Foods. Try one with the “Turkey” burger—a moist patty stacked with caramelized onions, maple-glazed yams and cranberry sauce that cleverly mimics the taste of real turkey.
Another clever copycat is a dairyfree ‘cheese’ called Daiya. When combined with a generous ladleful of hot gravy (made with roasted vegetable drippings) and oven-roasted sesame potato fries Daiya makes dreams of cheesy poutine come true. In house, diners nosh elbow-to -elbow at two long community tables in a ‘small world’ friendly way. It’s no surprise that Boon’s vegetarianism is married to environmentalism. Waste is composted and biodegradable take-out packaging is used. Natural Cycle Courier provides year-long bicycle delivery. Boon food is designed to be delicious, energy-efficient fuel for the body. End with a dehydrated chocolate- covered banana, a sweet way to show yourself some love.