Winning a comparison between the Fox and Woodshed craft burger eateries was Woodshed's "The Woodshed" burger. Photos by GRAHA M HICKS / EDMONTON SUN

Woodshed Burgers
10723-124 St.

Food: 4.5 of 5 Suns
Ambience: 3.5 of 5 Suns
Service: 3 of 5 Suns

11 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week  (11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 9 p.m. Sundays)
Dinner for two, excluding beverages, tips and taxes: Basic. $28; loaded, $52.

(No publicized delivery service)

Fox Burgers
6423 112 Ave. (Gibbard Block)

Food: 3 of 5 Suns
Ambience: 4 of 5 Suns
Service: 4 of 5 Suns

Monday to Sunday, 5 p.m. to 11 p.m., closed Tuesdays
Dinner for two, excluding beverages, tips and taxes: Basic. $36; loaded, $50


(No publicized delivery service)


I liked this idea, a comparison of Edmonton’s two new “craft burger” restaurants.

Two well-known chef/entrepreneurs are behind two new, updated, burger emporiums, Fox Burgers and Woodshed Burgers. Nate Box (District Café, Speedy Burrito, Salz) is at Fox,  Paul Shufelt (Workshop Eatery, Sun food columnist) at Woodshed.

If these two creative culinarians can’t come up with mouth-watering burgers, who can?

Both burger restaurants are in picturesque locales, Woodshed on 124 Street across from the Duchess Bakery, Fox Burgers on 112 Avenue east of Wayne Gretzky Drive in the renovated, historically charming Gibbard Block (once home of the legendary La Boheme Restaurant).

The two chefs are capable of five-star cooking. But both have opted for menus built around hamburgers, burgers taken to a new level.

It turned out to be no contest.

Woodshed’s “The Woodshed” burger and its “Effing Filet O’Fish” fish burger whupped Fox Burgers’ “Mushroom Swiss” and “Atlantic Lemon Cod” burgers.

Woodshed had the meatiest of patties, cooked to perfection – juicy, a touch of red in the centre, a touch of char. A degree’s difference of internal temperature, either way, would not have been right.  The sesame-seed buns were honest and fresh, lightly toasted on the inside, soft and slightly billowy. Three more balanced flavours/textures contributed to this burger’s fine personality – a sweet/savoury tomato jam,  arugula instead of iceberg lettuce, and the crowning touch, wine-braised caramelized onions.

This was a burger to compete with Jack’s Burger Shack in St. Albert! This was a damn good burger!

The Fox Mushroom Swiss was not in the same ballpark.  The patty had equally good ground beef, but it spiled too far out of the bun, and was a few degrees overcooked. The melted Swiss cheese was of good quality, but too much! The great gob of melted cheese crowded out all other flavours – the mushrooms might as well have stayed in the kitchen. The sesame bun was not as fresh as Woodshed’s and arrived with a major dent in its side. Plus the burger was over-salted.

Fox’s mushroom swiss burger had its problems.

With the fish burgers, Woodshed’s was again far superior.  Both were battered cod, but Woodshed’s Effing filet was fresh, tender, naturally moist and flaky within the batter.  In a similar batter, Fox’s fish patty was salty, mushy and mealy. No comparison.

The fish filet within the batter of Woodshed’s Effing Filet O’ Fish was superb.

The fish within Fox’s fish burger was not close in quality to the Woodshed fish burger, but it came with fries.

Woodshed’s burgers cost less than Fox’s by some $4, but all sides are extra.  Fox burgers come with fries and a token charge ($2) for side salads.

Service goes to Fox. A casual Woodshed server never delivered on a request for hot water.

Fox has hints of La Boheme elegance – the tin ceiling has been painted over, but the detailing is visible.  Woodshed’s décor is refreshingly unpretentious. While Fox could improve its burgers, both restaurants are popular. Be prepared to wait during peak hours.


• Old Towne Beverly (118 Aveen east of 50 Street) Dining Week is Oct. 17 to 25. Two icons – Uncle Ed’s Ukrainian + Swiss2Go  – are participating. Info at

• The Downtown Business Association is organizing Harvest Fest at 30 participating restaurants, from Oct. 17 to 20. Details at

• Congrats to SC’s Damn Good Food (River Cree Resort) chef JP Doblado, winning Edmonton’s Great Canadian Kitchen Party Competition Oct. 10 at the Edmonton Convention Centre. Second was the convention centre’s own Serge Belair, third Doreen Prei, now at ZINC.

• Openings … Brasserie Bardot, casual French country cooking by the same culinary team  and ownership (Jordan Pechet and family) as the next-door Violino …  a fourth Bodega Tapas has opened in St. Albert, riding on the fine reputations of Bodega 124 Street, Bodega Downtown and Bodega Highlands.

• A tribute to the respected chef/owner of the now-shuttereclosed Hardware Grill, Larry Stewart, will happen at XIX Restaurant in Terwillegar Nov. 3 and 4. For reservations, call 780-395-1119.  Three former Hardware Grill chefs are now at the Sorrentino’s Group Italian Steakhouse, Bistecca.

• Jason Gregor’s Pizza Pigout happens in Ford Hall at Roger’s Place at 6 p.m. on Oct. 23 – unlimited pizza donated from the city’s leading pizza outlets, pizza competitions, People’s Choice, 50/50 tickets. All toward a fine cause, Kidsport Edmonton. Details at

• Bus Fuller, founder of Earl’s and indirectly Joey’s and Cactus Club, passed away in Vancouver last week at 90. Bus – a genius at creating high-quality, consistent food standards within his restaurants – started Earl’s in Edmonton. I wrote about a delightful chat with Bus back in 2012 – see