Lunch Pick

WEEKLY LUNCH PICK: Anne DesBrisay waxes poetic about her burger from Jak’s Kitchen

Burger delight: Anne DesBrisay raves about her burger from Jak's, with its roasted red peppers, fresh basil, zephyr light fromage blanc and, beneath the meat, a paprika aioli

By Anne DesBrisay

The view of Bronson Avenue from Jak’s Kitchen was never what you’d call remarkable, but now even the sky is obliterated by a small legion of sunny demolition trucks and a hill of rubble. To be precise, my immediate view is of safety fencing curtaining pedestrian traffic. I used to walk by Jak’s pretty regularly — during a kids-hockey phase — and the obvious bread baking going on was an aromatic advertisement for its well-known brunch. Lately, the scent of yeast competes with diesel.

But out of the rubble Jak’s has produced genius in the form of a nifty idea called a “Jak in a Box.”  (Ottawa Magazine food editor Shawna Wagman introduced us to it in her City Bites column.) It’s a never-say-die initiative that embraces the misfortune of months of major roadwork: rather than curse these guys in trucks, let’s feed them! The way to a man’s heart, as they say…

The View: Jak's is making the most of the major roadworks outside its windows — with great deals for construction workers... and anyone else who enjoys a "satisfying manly lunch"

I lunched at Jak’s the day before the boxed-lunches were launching and talk amongst the staff was of a sandwich with either a salad or some fries, and a dessert, and pricing it to sell. Entrepreneurship at its finest. I hope they make buckets.

But if you’d rather sit in and eat off a plate, I can recommend unequivocally, the burger. Just look at the thing. Can you imagine anything more appealing than that? Well and truly roasted red peppers, fresh basil, a mound of zephyr light fromage blanc and, beneath the lightly packed, well seasoned meat, a paprika aioli with a smoky finish. All of this on a house made bun, slightly grilled, topped with lettuce and a ripe enough tomato. Comes with a dandy salad and a terrific bowl of the day’s soup — on this day a chorizo, potato, and parmesan chowder that was lunch all on its own. The whole deal reeked of an enormously satisfying manly lunch. Put THAT in a box, boys and girls.

Cost: cuppa chowder and burger deal $14

Open: Tuesday to Sunday for breakfast/brunch/lunch and dinner

Jak’s Kitchen, 479 Bronson Ave., 613-230-2088.

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