Photo: Emma Amelia

The ultimate milkshake review

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By Emma Kimmerly

Breaking: You don’t have to be six years old to enjoy a milkshake.

It’s the perfect treat for reminiscing about the good ol’ days in your poodle skirt and leather jacket. Or, if it’s just too early for a socially-acceptable brew.

There’s plenty of ethnically diverse, fine dining, vegan-gluten-sugar-starch-fun free foods around Ryerson, but there’s even better milkshake diners.

We set out to find the best of the best. We dug deep by investigating multiple flavour options, whipped cream quality, and all the other important factors because you know, journalism.

Here’s a list of the five chosen candidates from least best to heavenly, ranked by proximity, cost, and overall taste.

5. Fran’s

Stroll a little way down Victoria, open those F-shaped door handles, and step into the place of white-haired retirees and hangover-habouring students. They offer strawberry, vanilla, or chocolate milkshakes on any average day. But these are not average times. This month, they’re playing the Milkshake Games.

For seven dollars, you get to taste both chocolate cake, AND new-york style cheesecake milkshakes. Then you’re supposed to vote on social media to which one you liked better, using #milkshakegames, and that helps to decide which ultimate flavour will be added to their menu.

So much drama, but apparently so little drink. The competition shakes only come in the small juice glasses, and we’re here for the big leagues (again, journalism). So I ordered a plain-old vanilla… and mozzarella sticks.

It comes out in a huge tin mixing cup, topped with a plop of whipped cream and two straws, and yes, you will need both. It is thick. Like Game of Thrones storyline kind of thick.

Don’t get me wrong, it tastes like a solid, substantial shake with lots of potential, but your brain might implode from the lack of oxygen during suction. If you’re not on a date I suggest ditching the straws and going in for the kill straight from the cup. $5.64 spent at Fran’s will get you a pretty tasty milkshake, and a possible loss of brain cells.

4. Hard Rock Café

Trudge across Yonge-Dundas Square, and you’ll find yourself in an 80’s kid heaven. Plus, their milkshakes can come alcoholic. And after the price you pay for a regular one, you might as well throw some in there. They only have two options for non-alcoholic, vanilla or chocolate.

I got Vanilla, I swear I try other flavours, and am served a pretty happy looking shake. It tastes a lot like melted ice-cream more than a thick blend of milk, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. What kills it is that, well, blah. Sure, if your parents forced you to listen to rock n’ roll tapes throughout your childhood it can be a fun environment, but the shake is not a valid enough reason for attendance. It costs $7.35, the most expensive shake we tested.

3.  W Burger Bar

Apparently this place is a thing. It is packed, even on a Monday afternoon there’s a line up to the door. This one also offers alcoholic milkshakes, but it didn’t fit the ‘socially acceptable’ time period for me yet. It’s quite the trek from campus, which is one of the main reasons it is only third on the list. Up by College and Yonge (right beside another Fran’s), it takes about eight minutes to walk there.

It’s a bar like atmosphere, with modern music playing while you down a chocolate milkshake. Either that or vanilla or strawberry, again the only non-alcoholic flavours offered. It’s a refreshing, sweet treat compared to the others.

It isn’t overwhelming, and can be considered more of a beverage or dessert rather than a full-out meal that requires suffocation to digest. It’s frothy, comes with a strong dose of whipped cream deliciousness, and only cost $5.37.

2. Johnny Rockets

I have to be transparent about this (journalism), I love Johnny Rockets’ milkshakes. I have skipped class to go sit there by myself and contemplate my life over their wonderful, sweet creations.

My favourite part is that they bring out a glass full of wonderfulness, the leftover wonderfulness that didn’t fit in the glass beside it, and then a water to actually hydrate you. It’s just around the block from the VIC building beside the movie theater. I ordered a strawberry milkshake, and noticed that it had little pieces of strawberry in it, which made my heart happy.

It’s quite the perfect combination of froth, smooth consistency, and sweetness for $7.33. They offer other flavours like Oreo and Butterfinger without alcohol in them, which cost a little more than the regular three. Their shakes overall are divine, but it wasn’t number one. Drum roll please..

1. Marble Slab Creamery

I mean first off, you get to choose from every delicious flavour in the universe. Anywhere from cotton candy to peanut butter, the flavours are endless. Guys I got a red velvet milkshake. RED. FREAKING. VELVET.

They still offer basic flavours like strawberry and chocolate but why would you do that. The milkshake itself was pretty good, it was more liquid like than the others, but that made for faster, easier devouring.  Though, the reason it won is because of all the perks that come with it. If you own a SPC card, then that takes ten per cent off of your total.

PLUS, every time you go there, you get stamps on a reward card that add up to a free ice cream cone, like McDonald’s coffee but better. Oh and the other best part? You can put mixins in it. Yup. RED FREAKING VELVET WITH GUMMY BEARS INSIDE. The other other best part is that it comes in a disposable cup, which sucks for mother nature, but you can bring it to class with you so there’s that.

Only downside to this one is the price, as a small costs $5.49 before tax. But trust me, it will be the best six dollars you’ve ever spent, especially if you add gummy bears.


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