Where to Eat Great Restaurant Burgers from Coast to Coast
These are burgers that you have to use both hands to hold, ones that require extra napkins to wipe off the juices that flow down your chin when you bite into them.
Photo By: Kreis Beall & Heather Anne Thomas ©2009 Kreis Beall and Heather Anne Thomas +1 865-681-6128. All rights reserved unless specifically granted in writing
Photo By: Andrew Cebulka ©Andrew Cebulka
Photo By: Michael Piazza
Photo By: Noah Fecks ©Noah Fecks
Created by chefs across the country, some of these burgers are topped with cheese and pickles, while others embrace exotic flavors. They've all won local and even national accolades, and for good reason: With almost everything made from scratch in-house, down to the condiments, they're not your average burgers. These are burgers that you have to use both hands to hold, ones that require extra napkins to wipe off the juices that flow down your chin when you bite into them. Here's where to find them.
By Monica Bhide
Atlanta: Holeman & Finch Public House
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Charleston and Nashville: Husk
The Husk Cheeseburger is so terrific that just the description will make you drool: chuck, flank steak and bacon patties with Husk special sauce, white onion, American cheese, and bread-and-butter pickles on a potato-roll hamburger bun. “My favorite thing to eat in the world is a cheeseburger, and a perfect cheeseburger to me is reminiscent of that classic diner burger with a squishy bun and gooey American cheese. The Husk Cheeseburger is the kind I crave and was inspired by a drive-in I used to go to as a kid,” Chef Sean Brock tells us.
Photo by Andrew Cebulka
More About: Husk Restaurant
Boston: Craigie on Main
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Fairfax, Va. and Washington, D.C.: Red Apron Butcher
The Original was made to be the kind of burger you could eat every day. The Original launched with the opening of Red Apron in Union Market DC in 2013. At the time, however, it was available only on Fridays, and only 20 were made during lunch. Demand grew so much that eventually it became a mainstay on the menu all the time and spread to the other two locations of Red Apron (Merrifield, Va. & D Street NW in D.C.). The Original is an 80/20 blend of brisket, short rib, sirloin and round and is topped with housemade pickles, tomato, red onion, iceberg lettuce and a very special take on Thousand Island dressing. “It’s a whole-animal burger. So it has a rounder flavor, great meat-to-fat ratio and a nice texture,” says Nathan Anda, partner/butcher/chef of Red Apron.
Photo by Marissa Bialecki
More About: Red Apron Butcher
Houston: Bernie’s Burger Bus
Buses roaming Houston
The Principal is a classic American burger with cheese and mayonnaise, mustard, ketchup, pickles, onions, shredded lettuce and slow-roasted garlic tomatoes. “The Principal is your basic burger, except for the scratch-made condiments (yes, all of them — ketchup, mayo, mustard, pickles and slow-roasted garlic tomatoes), amazing local cheese and a bun made by the best artisanal baker in town. It’s the most-unique basic burger on the planet!” says Justin Turner, chef/owner of Bernie’s Burger Bus.
More About: Bernie’s Burger Bus
Las Vegas and Los Angeles: Comme Ça
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Los Angeles: Plan Check Kitchen + Bar
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Madison, Wis.: The Old Fashioned Tavern & Restaurant
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Minneapolis: FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar
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New Orleans: The Company Burger
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New York: Ngam
Former model Chef Hong Thaimee puts her Thai twist on the traditional burger at Ngam. The “Sai Oor Farang” Thai Burger mixes beef and Chiang Mai sausage with housemade sai oor curry paste, is topped with cilantro-lime mayonnaise and green papaya kraut, and is served with Chiang Mai fries (kabocha squash and sweet potato slices dipped in coconut-curry batter and deep-fried). “The ‘Sai Oor’ Thai Burger has become one of Ngam’s signature dishes, and it was on the menu from the very start. The burger really sums up my cooking philosophy, as it draws from the flavors and ingredients of Thailand that I love, while taking on the form that Americans know and crave,” says Chef Hong.
Photo by Noah Fecks
More About: Ngam
Portland, Ore.: The Grüner
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Washington, D.C.: Bourbon Steak
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