Friday, March 20, 2020

Eating off the Hill: Cheese steak at Centrale Bergham

A sudden craving for cheese steak a few weekends back led to a googling of local options and to the decision to try a fast food spot I had passed by on the bus a bunch of times but never had the opportunity to pop in to: Centrale Bergham.

They're a Montreal-based fast food chain that seems to have a bit of a Middle Eastern influence, with a Halal menu and many items coming in kebabs. They have some very interesting/weird options, like a double cheeseburger and grilled chicken in one kebab, or their signature "bergham" sandwich which is 3 beef patties, egg, beef bacon and cheddar cheese in a kebab.

Some of that is a little out there even for me; I was only looking for a philly cheese steak. I went to the Ottawa South location on Bank Street, at Heron, and it was pretty quiet on a Sunday afternoon with one guy working the counter and one in the kitchen.

After waiting for a rather slow-ordering family I ordered a Philly Steak with onion rings and a pop. I ordered it as they make it, which is alleged "creamy filet mignon" with onions, tomatoes, lettuce, mushroom and swiss cheese on a kebab roll.

Having been to philly, my expectations were low. On my trip there five years back during my East Coast baseball tour, I did my research before placing my order at Sonny's for one whiz with. It was delicious. One day, I shall return.

For a not overly busy fast food reasturant, they weren't very fast. After 30 minutes cooling my heals with a diet coke and Twitter, I went up to the counter to enquire just as they came out of the kitchen with my order. Guess they must make every order to order, one at a time?

Anyway, I took it back to my table to dig in. The onion rings were light and not greasy, and I don't recall what the sauce was but it paired well and I appreciated being given two of the small cups and not just one. As for the sandwich, I should have told them no lettuce and tomato. I know you can get that in Philly too, but for me a philly is beef, cheese whiz, and onions. Will accept mushrooms.

Anyway, the beef was fine and so was the roll. It's definitely not a philly, but nothing outside of Philadelphia is. It filled me up, and I'll be back to try something else. I just wish it was less of a wait.

Here's my sammy at Sonny's in Philly back in the day. Ahh, memories.

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