Golden 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.
It'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.
Today 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.
Since 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.
Since 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.
Overall, Golden Star is a great place for a burger, but perhaps not so much for other stuff. They also offer beer and wine.
Writing by John Wang / Photos by Janet Kwan