Address: 645 Corydon Ave
Entrees: $8.50 and up
In a banner burger year Market Burger opened, taking on the challenge of a popular dish that had already been reimagined countless times over. To venture into burgerland, particularly in a town weaned on chili-smothered fat boys, is brave. To emerge, with a unique offering that adds a new dimension to this city’s flush and storied burger scene, is remarkable.
The clarity of hindsight frames the union of beloved burgers and regional cuisine as obvious. Simply consider burger’s basic components, beef and bun. Even the most citied slicker knows cattle and wheat don’t originate too far from the Corydon strip. Yet, for years, dishes cued by our land and people have been limited to savvy chefs often at the helm of multiple fork establishments.
A subtle gate-to-plate yarn starts at the door, with a greeting of gleaming pickles in mason jars, and continues into an upcycled barn board interior where grub arrives on pink butcher paper. The Manitoba-shaped menu calls out farmers and producers, ergo educating eaters and forging connectivity to the source of sustenance.
The people of our province are reflected in burgers that reference signature Greek, Mennonite, Pakistani, Vietnamese and Indian flavour profiles. Butter chicken burgers deliver tender free run chicken breast slathered in silky sauce and chunky mango chutney, while banh mi burgers punctuate soy-glazed Harborside Farms pork with bright daikon and jalapeño peppers.
Nine signature burgers on offer include delights of flavour, like earthy black bean patties dressed in juicy corn relish and housemade chipotle-laced ketchup, and comfort like a beef number sporting creamy Bothwell old cheddar mac n’ cheese nestled in a pillowy Gunn’s Bakery brioche bun.
Since opening the menu has evolved to our liking. A ballsy attempt, prairie oyster burgers, were pulled before we could grab a bite and replaced by a drool-worthy bison chilli burger. Our one lingering desire for the kitchen is a bun-warmer.
With its loud and proud Manitoba message, symbiotic sourcing and a familiar fast food form, Market Burger makes eating local inclusive and fun. Look forward to leaving with the pleasant aftertaste of provincial pride.