Tip-top Toppings 

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How to win compliments for your condiments

Last October, Ontario-based burger chain The Works caught the attention of late-night hosts Jimmy Fallon and Seth Meyers in the media frenzy around its “Reese PBC Burger”, stuffed and garnished with Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. But president and CEO Bruce Miller believes sweet plus savoury is “cutting edge”; in fact, The Works has just launched a Nutella Burger.

Charles Winship of Chicago-based Technomic Inc. says condiments should be house-made or “things you can only get here,” such as Wahlburgers’ house-made tomato jam and “Paul’s signature Wahl sauce” or Nuburger’s homemade Asian slaw and blueberry-barbecue sauce.

With specialty burgers, says Robbie Dover, cofounder of PEI Burger Love, “it’s about building a flavour harmony as opposed to just stacking things on top of each other.” While international flavours are popular, a literal interpretation of a specific cuisine is boring. Instead, he says, it’s about “trying to find that ingredient that’s a little bit of a surprise.”

— Sarah B. Hood

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Burger Fact: The world’s most expensive burger — approved by Guinness World Records — is priced at $3,095. Created by chef Diego Buik of the South of Houston restaurant in The Hague, Netherlands, the sandwich features a Japanese dry-aged Wagyu and Black Angus beef patty, Oosterschelde lobster infused with Hermit – Dutch Coastal Gin, foie gras, white truffle, Remeker cheese, Japanese fruit tomatoes and caviar. It’s topped with French lettuce, Iberian ham and a sauce made with 35 lobsters, Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee, Madagascar vanilla, saffron and Japanese soy — all stuffed in a brioche bun made with saffron and covered in gold leaf.

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