950 Yates Street
Phone: (250) 884-5643
The Refiner Diner Food Truck has been much raved about, and why? I'd say it's because of the fries than their signature crispy cheeseburger. I'm not always in town during lunch-time, and half their product tends to sell out fast during this part of the day. When they first started, I imagine all the people from the Victoria Police Department came here to graze and buy out all of the Refiner's products. I'm glad this operation tends to post hourly updates on Twitter and Facebook of when certain menu items are out. In a social media generation, I have to say I love their commitment to customer service.
That was back when they were located in North Park. This operation has moved to be located across the street from the Yates Street London Drugs location. Because of the change in locale, I'll be back for more. And as for how good this fast food can be on the go, it should be consumed within minutes of being fried up, grilled up or served up. That way, all the good crispness of the burger can be enjoyed and the intensity of the heat can keep one warm when the weather turns afoul—namely wet—in Victoria.
The french fries come garnished with rock salt, and after adding malted vinegar on top, that's a scent that will send the greyhound in me racing. I haven't come across an excellent french fry for some time, and this place certainly ranks up there for knowing how to make the fry taste right. I enjoyed all the right combinations of crispness surrounding the fluffy soft interior. Instead of double dipping to really fry these potato strands, it might have been tripled just to retain the heat for a good 15 minutes.
As for the burger, I'm not fond of pickles so I had to take them out before consuming. The crispy cheese texture is great, only if it's eaten at the right time. When not, the good bits—the hardened cheese in all its salty goodness—is not as spectacular. I knew the risks while rushing home so I could get a good photograph of my lunch.
Fortunately, I didn't live too far away. Next time, I'm going to eat this burger on the spot and enjoy the goodness of the cheddar as it was meant to taste. The patty itself was quite delicate, and the pancake like brioche bun (partially flattened in my rush to head home) finished how this burger would look prior to hitting my tastebuds.
I highly approve of the concept, but there are other cheeses to experiment with. I've tasted other cheeses deep fried and each of them contributes to a different type of flavour. When bubbling up any kind of cheese over a beef patty, combinations needs to be explored. That way, something new might get discovered.
4 Blokes out of 5