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Golden Star

Posted by Guest Contributor / Reviewed on June 14, 2012 / review policy

golden star torontoGolden Star doesn't need a web site, Twitter or Groupon. In business since 1964 near the corner of Yonge and Steeles, this family-owned burger joint can rely on its legions of fans who trek here from far and wide to savour one of their famously charred homemade burgers.

golden star torontoIt's been almost 50 years since they served their first customer but Golden Star doesn't seem to have changed one bit. Prices have obviously risen with the times but appearances are still a throwback to an earlier era. Seats are orange and plastic, payment is cash only and a sign proudly touts the cooking as charcoal broiled.

golden star restaurant torontoToday we're here for the house special Homemade All Star Burger ($6.70), a 6 oz. fresh beef burger, topped with the usual lettuce, tomatoes and Golden Star's special barbeque sauce. Cooked to perfection it's juicy in the middle and full of delicious char flavour. The barbeque sauce provides a nice added zip and the sesame bun is warm and toasty.

golden star burger torontoSince Golden Star has plenty of non-burger items on the menu as well, we decide to take a flier at the Buffalo Style Chicken Wings ($7.25). Definitely nothing to compare to Duff's, All Star or these other spots, the wings are unfortunately delivered half-burnt and devoid of much flavour. The accompanying fries ($3.25) are average at best.

golden star toronto restaurantSince no meal at a classic burger joint like this is complete without a shake, we debate for a second about splitting the most interesting sounding one on the menu (the Blue Goo-Cotton Candy) before playing it conservative with the always reliable strawberry ($3.75). The shake is cold and thick and provides a nice cap to what was otherwise an uneven meal.

golden star restaurantOverall, Golden Star is a great place for a burger, but perhaps not so much for other stuff. They also offer beer and wine.

golden star toronto restaurantWriting by John Wang / Photos by Janet Kwan



DuffoutLaw / December 5, 2011 at 11:03 am
this place has the greatest burgers in the GTA. Should be number one on the list of best TO burgers.
Brenda Tustin / December 5, 2011 at 11:40 pm
The Gold Star is still family run and the food is still great and prices the same. I went there as a teenager and still go there today...great place...and yes..JOE is still telling the same jokes.
Senior_V / December 9, 2011 at 02:15 am
Great burgers, always consistantly good food and service nice place to sit and eat in.
Jay / December 9, 2011 at 07:46 pm
Bar none the best homemade burgers!!! Your not a burger affecinado if you don't like these burgers. It's not to far if you come by car,
J / June 14, 2012 at 09:27 am
Is it just me, or does that guy look like Data!? Awesome.
the lemur / June 14, 2012 at 09:49 am
I know your headline on the main page is meant as a pun, but the expression is 'pass muster'. You could have used 'cut the mustard' and it would have been more apt.
dan / June 14, 2012 at 11:06 am
I've lived down the street from this place since last year. I pass by twice a day, every day. Never been. That shall now change!
Andrew / June 14, 2012 at 11:10 am
There is only one 'classic burger shack' in North Toronto. It's actually called 'Burger Shack', on Eglinton. The best.
The Lonely Troll / June 14, 2012 at 11:27 am
For the authentic York Region burger experience head north on Yonge to Steer Inn. Be sure to ask for sauce on your fries.
Gabe / June 14, 2012 at 11:36 am
So they don't offer mustard at this place? I don't get the headline/title?
Ben Wise / June 14, 2012 at 12:04 pm
Best burger in the city - hands down. Best shake too.

Of course the wings aren't as good as Duffs (G-Star is a burger joint, after all), but a burger at Duffs can't compare to here.
tom replying to a comment from Andrew / June 14, 2012 at 12:11 pm
burger shack is balls who are you kidding
scottd / June 14, 2012 at 12:23 pm
After the closure of Keith's Hobby, this place is one of the very few remaining stores on Yonge Street before Mel started monument building.
SCRUBS / June 14, 2012 at 12:27 pm
G-Star is classic. The guy talkin smack about the fries doesn't know what he's talking about - they are awesome, especially if they are well done. If i was going to say something bad about them, it'd be that they give you too many and I can never finish them. The onion rings are great too. Their burger's are among the best - I've had 2 in the last week. I'm fat - I know burgers!
Please.... replying to a comment from The Lonely Troll / June 14, 2012 at 12:30 pm
Please, Steer-In is overpriced and can't even compare to Golden Star. Not to mention that it's on the chopping block to be leveled for a condo development.
Wazoo / June 14, 2012 at 12:49 pm
This place really is great! I love the onion rings too. Love the grape drink. Is that still around?
Wazoo / June 14, 2012 at 12:50 pm
I have never been to Steer Inn, but I hear it's just as good, if not better
wtfskies / June 14, 2012 at 01:05 pm
this is where i'd normally bitch about bloGTA etc etc but i agree.

golden start is divine.
steer inn is also divine, they have the best onion rings i've ever had in my life.

but for _the_ authentic gta burger experience, you have to go to tc's in aurora. just sayin.
Dan / June 14, 2012 at 01:38 pm
Ive been going there since I could drive..1973. Now my wife and aughter are hooked. Great family.
GTA Commisoner replying to a comment from wtfskies / June 14, 2012 at 02:58 pm
Do you even know what GTA stands for?
Sean / June 14, 2012 at 03:09 pm
Where else can you go for a good burger and beer? All fast food chains don't have them. It's also nice to eat outside too.
alex replying to a comment from Andrew / June 14, 2012 at 03:20 pm
Agreed. Was there last week (yonge-eg burger shack) get the banquet burger.
Rick / June 14, 2012 at 09:15 pm
This place and Real McCoy's on Markham Rd and Ellsemere are two of the most classic spots in the GTA. Really good joints. They need more independent run burger spots in the city than just generic food joints like McDick's or Wendy's.
andrew replying to a comment from tom / June 14, 2012 at 10:18 pm

If by 'balls', you mean great, like 'sick' or 'ill' then yes, you're correct. It is 'balls'.
George replying to a comment from Andrew / June 15, 2012 at 06:15 am
Eglinton is not really north's midtown. And Golden Star is not north Toronto, it's Thornhill. Just saying.
Crom is your god / June 16, 2012 at 02:47 am
A decent burger, but definitely not the best in the city, more on the johnny's, Apache, Dairy freeze level; over-hyped due to years of reputation and people just going along with the popular opinion. A better tasting burger for a good price would be Tom's burgers (the home burger) by Markham Rd and Hwy 7, check it out
S / June 16, 2012 at 10:08 am
What's interesting to observe in these long-lasting burger places, it's the same staff that have been working there for DECADES!
Adam / June 18, 2012 at 12:34 am
Pass the Mustard? Isn't it Pass Gas OR Shit the Bed!
Danny / June 27, 2012 at 07:43 am
Went there early Jan. Had the homemade burger. Very good. Better than Apache and Johnny's. (I still like Johnny's because of the folks and the food is decent)

I agree it's no where near the best in the city, but the burger works. They shouldn't have to change it. I appreciate it for what it is.

If you really want to know about what a great burger is then read up on how to make a burger. You'll be surprised that each person has a preference of a burger based on meat ratios alone.

You'll know a good burger by how they prepare and cook the meat.

Folks who want a good burger should try it.

Nicole / April 27, 2013 at 05:35 pm
Hello it's me, I am also visiting this website daily, this web site is in fact good and the people are really sharing nice thoughts.
meeting thai girls / April 29, 2013 at 03:08 pm
Thanks for finally writing about >Golden Star
sebastian / September 11, 2013 at 01:51 pm

Not a big fan of this review. before you state "Overall, Golden Star is a great place for a burger, but perhaps not so much for other stuff. They also offer beer and wine."

Maybe try the steak sandwhiches or the chicken sandwiches.

Lets not jump to conclusion.

Best service, best burger,

Eric / September 25, 2013 at 04:48 pm
Very good burger (the homemade, not that other thing), very good onion rings, sub-par fries (avoid them unless you're getting a poutine).

Steer-In is a running joke in my family because of how lousy it is. Nobody should eat there, and nobody should work there. Steer-Clear!
Kim / January 28, 2014 at 11:47 am
I grew up just north of this place. It was and still is my favourite local burger joint. I love everything about it. It's not fancy, but ground beef on a bun never is and never should be. :)
Is there a cat meat burger @ golden star? / January 28, 2014 at 07:32 pm
Just axing...they're hard to get these days...very tasty!
Ravin / May 19, 2014 at 09:58 pm
Let me start from the good.

There is nothing good about this place.

The Bad - Tried their chicken fingers, poutin and disgusting burger.

The Burger tasted like rubbery paper -
Taste 1/5
Texture - 1/5
Size - 3/5

The Poutin:
Hard to ruin a poutin but the gravy on top tasted like socks.
Taste 2/5
Texture 3/5
size 4/5

Chicken Finger:
These chicken fingers were darker than Cuban tan, dip fried in oil that has never been changed.

Taste 2/5
Texture 1/5
Size 3/5

Overall: would recommend if you are a daredevil and you want to eat some frozen rubbery paper tasteless burgers,Cuban Chicken fingers and Sock gravy poutin.

PS. cash only.
The_Skipper / July 23, 2014 at 04:18 pm
silly rabbit no one buys the industrial rubber burger, gotta get the homeburger. the burger and fries here are always the best.

personally i cant handle the toxic shock of french fries, and theres nothing else on the menu as a substitute.

the fries that are saturated in super heated toxic slurry. bon appetite and let me know when its time to snip out a vital organ.

same thing with hormones and antibiotics in the beef. were all a bunch of suckers.

i have no shortage of complaints which might be summarized by GS's strict doctrine of selling the old school. the plan is dont change a thing however they have updated from time to time.

i remember what the owner told me 25 years ago when i asked for sauteed mushrooms: "i know where your getting those sauteed mushrooms and believe me they will be out of business some time soon", and he was right.
Scallootch replying to a comment from DuffoutLaw / September 6, 2014 at 11:54 am
Best burger in town? Perhaps in this neighbourhood, but on a slightly larger map Master Steaks on Dixie makes the best burger in the GTA.
Mike P / January 15, 2015 at 11:59 am
Golden star rocks. Why you would come here and order something other than the steak or all-star burger completely baffles me. The only good chicken fingers are janes-pub style or pinty's. Golden Star can seem expensive at just under 12$ for an all-star combo but compare that to other lunch options and most will not leave you nearly as full or as satisfied. I skip cheese and bacon cause the burger is filling enough as is. The steak on a kaiser is very tasty ( I'm a big eater so I don't order it cause it's not as big as the All-star).
Their fries kick ass and they give you enough that you won't need dinner later. I like how every table has vinegar cause I dump it on my fries.
Steer-inn used to be good-solid-quality food but about 4-5 years ago I ate a banquet burger w/rings and the patty looked smaller and it left me starving, and it didn't taste handmade. I confirmed the same issue with many other people in Richmond Hill and we all agreed they finally made the switch to frozen patties. That's a farewell to my business. I will say tho their fish-n-chips is decent and the peameal on a bun or breakfasts are always good and very affordable.

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