July 3rd, 2013
02:30 PM ET
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Kate Krader (@kkrader on Twitter) is Food & Wine's restaurant editor. When she tells us where to find our culinary heart's desire, we listen up.

A couple of weeks ago, I asked burger kingpin Josh Ozersky for his top 10 burger spots around the country. Josh focused like a laser on places that served up American cheeseburgers on squishy buns, from Keller’s Drive-In in Dallas to Mar’sel in California.

In honor of Independence Day, Josh is making an exception to his ironclad rules about buns and cheese and broadening his - and everyone’s - burger horizons.

Tell it, Josh.

"Looking back over my top 10 hamburgers in America list here, I am struck by a couple of things. One is that there are no high-concept hamburgers here, the kind that have complex toppings, artisanal buns and farmhouse cheeses. The reason, of course, is that I hate such hamburgers. But not everybody is as rigorously orthodox, even puritanical, as I am on the subject.

So while the following burgers aren’t, strictly speaking, really hamburgers as I think of them, they are all wonderful. And this being Independence Day, it seems only right to embrace diversity, inclusiveness and the immemorial American urge to buck tradition and go our own way."


Get the recipe for the burger shown above.

Chopped Beef on Toast Sandwich: Louis’ Lunch - New Haven, Connecticut
As a hamburger historian, I was forced to reject this venerable restaurant’s claim to being the first hamburger in America, for the simple reason that they don’t serve hamburgers. Louis serves a chopped steak on toast, but it’s a fabulous chopped steak, soft and fresh and fragrant, and the ancient iron burners on which it’s cooked burn with a blue and holy fire, the Eternal Flame of the hamburger’s Age of Heroes.

El Doble: Txikito - New York City
If I were ever to be persuaded to abandon the One True Way, it would be for this buxom temptress, a double burger slathered with raw sheep milk cheese, crème fraîche, pickled onions and cornichons, nestled inside a soft-ish bun. The brainchild of tapas whiz Alex Raij, El Doble is something of a cult secret inside the extreme hamburger scene in New York.

Jucy Lucy: Matt’s Bar - Minneapolis, Minnesota
The Jucy Lucy - yes, it’s spelled that way - is simply a hamburger with a pocket of hot cheese in the middle. It’s scalding, dangerous, hard to make and very, very good. There are a number of excellent Jucy Lucys in America, but Matt’s Bar invented the dish, and that’s why I am choosing it. I believe that the truly great Jucy Lucy has yet to be created, and that all the ones extant just represent a blind groping toward its future glory.

The Original Maid-Rite: Maid-Rite - multiple locations
The sole surviving species of a now-extinct line, this living fossil represents a direction the hamburger might have gone in, but didn’t. Rather than a formed patty, the Maid-Rite consists of loose meat braised in a flavored brine. Interestingly, once pressed into its squishy bun, it eats like a tender slider.

Patty Melt: Steak ’n Shake - multiple locations
A patty melt isn’t just a grilled cheese sandwich with a burger patty in the middle. That’s a gross and greasy mess. The real patty melt, which is seen in its quintessential form at Steak ’n Shake, is a composed, constructed, balanced sandwich of crisp, buttery rye bread, a brown patty thin enough to be easily bitten through, a light dressing of sweetly caramelized onions, and a bright, sapid sauce to bring it all together. Steak ’n Shake is the True Church of the Hamburger Faith, by the way. No other chain comes close.

Lamb Burger: The Breslin - New York City
I’ve inveighed for years against non-beef “burgers,” but April Bloomfield’s incomparable lamb burger at the Breslin shut me up. This sandwich is a tangy, luscious and piquant masterpiece, a flavor bomb that really isn’t quite like anything else. It easily rivals Bloomfield’s more famous Spotted Pig burger, which is saying something.

Medium-Rare 2×3, Extra Toasted: In-N-Out Burger - multiple locations
The In-N-Out cult exaggerates the chain’s virtues - really, it’s just the poor man’s Steak ’n Shake - but the burger referenced above, the crown jewel of In-N-Out’s secret menu, might be the best chain burger in the country. That is, if they really do deliver a pink, juicy, flat burger and a crispy brown bun all held together by three layers of rich, binding, viscous American cheese. But it’s hard to pull off; even the fanatically precise operations of Danny Meyer's Shake Shack can’t regularly deliver a medium-rare burger this thin, let alone two of them.

Double Burger with Cheese: White Castle - multiple locations
Those things called sliders you are being served in various restaurants? Those are not sliders. A true slider is so small and so soft that it’s more like eating a macaron or petit four than it is a hamburger. There a couple of reasons it’s hard to find a real slider, but the main ones are that it’s almost impossible to find the tiny, white buns necessary to make them, and almost as hard to make tiny, insubstantial slices of meat, unless you are making nothing else.

To my knowledge, only White Castle, Krystal and Kewpie’s make them. White Castle’s double cheeseburger, with its inner slice of bread almost disintegrating, is as rich as cheesecake.

Umami Burger: Umami Burger - Los Angeles, California
When I first tried the umami burger, I mistrusted and disliked it. But the the same could be said of my wife’s initial reaction to me. Over the years I have come to love the flavor of these burgers, so unique and potent and memorable. I still think they’re not real burgers, but so what? Diversity has its rewards.

More from Food & Wine:
 
Best Burgers in the U.S.
Over-the-Top Burgers
30 Incredible Burger Recipes
Fantastic Veggie Burgers
Summer Grilling Recipes

Do you agree with this list? Post your favorite burger joint in the comments below.

Previously:
– Josh goes traditional and picks his: Top 10 burgers in the U.S.
– Advice from a backyard expert: Best. Burgers. Ever.
– The secrets behind America's Best Cheeseburger (according to Food Network)
– Step-by-step guide: Making the World's Best Bacon Cheeseburger (according to the London Observer and pictured above)
– Killer cheddar sliders from our battling spouses

© 2011 American Express Publishing Corporation. All rights reserved.

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Filed under: Bite • Burgers • Content Partner • Food and Wine • Grilling • Sandwiches


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soundoff (407 Responses)
  1. NYC Fitness Events

    Double Burger with Cheese: White Castle? How is this place still open? Complete garbage!

    January 31, 2014 at 4:35 pm | Reply
  2. mealkusocial

    Would love to try the lamb burger, sounds delicious. And the chopped beef on toast looks like a great unconventional choice.

    July 12, 2013 at 12:39 pm | Reply
  3. her response

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    July 11, 2013 at 8:50 pm | Reply
  4. Ann

    Kind of surprised so many are balking at the idea of a lamb burger – especially in a list of "nontraditional" burgers. Ever try one? They're delicious. Season with salt, pepper, garlic and a little rosemary if you like, and serve with mustard (wouldn't recommend ketchup). It's not sacreligious to try something different.

    July 8, 2013 at 12:53 pm | Reply
  5. cnet

    A best burger list that doesn't include a burger from Texas? Lol....list fail.

    July 7, 2013 at 12:15 am | Reply
    • sam

      why? it's not the 50 best burgers. it's 10. quit your entitlement, its a hamburger opinion list.

      July 7, 2013 at 2:54 am | Reply
    • I LOVE burgers

      Nope you FAIL.

      NOTHING good comes from texas except maybe Wendy.

      July 7, 2013 at 5:50 am | Reply
      • Chris

        Disparaging an entire state based on your naive perception that the residents there don't all conform to your narrow political views? How very intelligent you must be.

        July 3, 2014 at 9:32 am | Reply
    • Cletus

      Correct.
      Without Whataburger, this list is invalid.

      July 7, 2013 at 7:12 am | Reply
      • BWF (burgers w/flavor)

        I can live with that.

        July 7, 2013 at 10:34 am | Reply
  6. Matt anderson

    I thought this was going to be a serious list and then saw a bunch of fast food joints on it. This tells me that this was a pretty lazy list. I mean if you think White Castle should be in any 10 best lists you're nuts. One last thing, Wisconsin is known as one of the states that invented the hamburger yet there isn't anywhere in Wisconsin? If you wanted to pick a fast food joint then Culvers should be on this list over White Castle any day of the week.

    July 6, 2013 at 11:41 pm | Reply
  7. Scott

    Any list of "best burgers" that includes White Castle should be ignored. The sliders are gray dust bunnies with the wilted pickle being the best part. Blecch! Worst ever.

    July 6, 2013 at 10:06 pm | Reply
  8. djhm81

    Reblogged this on DJHMcDonald and commented:
    I'm only reblogging this for our own future use. =P

    July 6, 2013 at 7:53 pm | Reply
  9. Ron

    He can't be an expert or he would have picked In & Out Double Double as the best!!

    July 6, 2013 at 6:42 pm | Reply
    • Steve

      The single most overrated burger of all time. Grew up on the East coast and had friends who collected t-shirts from different locations. When I moved to Nevada I could not wait to try it. Oh please, so unbelievably disappointing. That thick, massive onion on a mediocre double burger with styrofoam fries is not my idea of a meal, no matter what the cult following is. Now, chomp on a Mr. Hero Roman Burger and that's the spot!! Rockstar burger. Wish we had Mr. Hero out west....trade you for In 'n Out burger Cleveland?!

      December 3, 2013 at 1:16 am | Reply
  10. Ben

    #1 World's Fair- The Beacon Drive In- Spartanburg, SC

    July 6, 2013 at 6:38 pm | Reply
  11. Baruch

    I grew up eating at Louis' Lunch on New Haven. Best BURGER ever...still to this day.

    July 6, 2013 at 6:33 pm | Reply
    • vodtke6982

      A good burger, but you should take a short drive up to Meriden and have a Ted's steamed cheeseburger. You won't regret it.

      July 6, 2013 at 9:46 pm | Reply
  12. Pete

    How does one proclaim to be an "expert" on anything food. Taste is subjective to numerous inputs such as where you grew up, what type of food you were raised on and of course YOUR OWN TASTE BUDS! We can line up 10 people and they will tell you 10 different things about the pizza they just ate. Top 10 Burgers? There's probably 10 places "hole in the wall" out there that weren't mentioned that would probably blow these 10 out of the water.

    July 6, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Reply
    • Ben

      A "expert" eater is someone who can eat something and recognize every ingredient that was used, and how it was cooked just by taking one bite. You dont have to like what your eating just that your able to do that

      July 6, 2013 at 6:36 pm | Reply
  13. Royale

    the best burger in my town,comes from my Kitchen

    July 6, 2013 at 4:05 pm | Reply
  14. Concerned Reader

    Must be nice to be able to afford to roam around the Country, visiting various places to eat and getting paid for it.

    July 6, 2013 at 3:50 pm | Reply
  15. Concerned Reader

    Must be nice to be able to afford to roam around the Country, visiting various places to eat and getting paid for it. How about picking one city, in one State, and publishing the findings on that?

    July 6, 2013 at 3:49 pm | Reply
  16. Johnny J

    In-n-Out is a poor man's Steak n' Shake?? Are you freaking kidding me? I am from Arizona (where there is no SnS but tons on InO) and I now in Florida (the opposite). I enjoy both chains and I can tell you with 100% certainty the In-n-Out blows Steak n' Shake out of the water. This writer must be getting a kickback from Steak n' Shake to call it the "Tre church of the hamburger faith" their pattys are wafer thin and often dry. I only eat there because it's inexpensive and open 24 hours. In-n-Out wins hands down, always juicy and delicious.

    July 6, 2013 at 3:26 pm | Reply
    • I LOVE burgers

      The fact that you enjoy SnS makes your opinion just as invalid as the author's. SnS should not be served to any living (or dead) creature.

      July 7, 2013 at 5:54 am | Reply
      • AlienDave

        You've spent a dozen or so posts bashing Steak 'n Shake. Not stating what you like. Telling anyone who'll pay attention that SnS is dog food/unfit for animal consumption/1000 times worse than a veggie burger/ad nauseum. I believe we get it. You don't prefer them.

        I, on the other hand, will be eating lunch there this afternoon – and look forward to it (and to your hyperbole filled response).

        July 7, 2013 at 8:31 am | Reply
  17. Wen

    in the article it says it has 10 but where the tenth one

    July 6, 2013 at 2:43 pm | Reply
  18. Dennis Davis

    Zip's located in Cincinnati Ohio has the best burger in this region.

    July 6, 2013 at 1:09 pm | Reply
  19. pohakulua

    In the west we like our meat cooked through. A medium rare burger is unsafe and people out here would send it back. Lamb is not popular here either. Food is so subjective that it is impossible for one person or group to choose the best of anything.

    July 6, 2013 at 10:55 am | Reply
    • Denhunter

      NOT an expert. Just another jerkwad NeeweYaaaker claiming 'every thing is better here!'. It's not. Nobody but some effete snob puts lamb in a freakin' hamburger!! And a pizza roll? That's a pizza with dough on top and bottom, NOT a hamburger. But the worst is this lavender lovely like creme fraiche and sheep milk. Thought of it makes me vomit.

      Why don't you call this article 'Snobby New York Guy (with a friend on our staff) Likes These Sandwiches in New York and Your Food Sucks Anywhere Else?'.

      July 6, 2013 at 12:37 pm | Reply
  20. woodie

    There isn't a good burger within a 1000 miles of me. Arg.

    July 6, 2013 at 10:49 am | Reply
    • Denhunter

      Unless you are looking for a catshit and arugula like this guy recommends, you have a ton of good places in your town, and anywhere in the U.S. (except in the cities, where the crooks charge 10 bucks for a burger). Steer clear of the chains he mentioned which specialize in meat squeezed on frying sheet with processed cheese. 5 Guys are everywhere, reasonably priced.

      July 6, 2013 at 12:43 pm | Reply
    • denhunter

      If you are defining 'good' as the type of food THIS guy calls a hamburger, you might concern yourself lucky...the only place where he has ever eaten a hamburger is a Steak and Shake in New Jersey, and White Castle in Chicago. Any burger guy knows it's the are both small pan fired sandwiches. The writer thinks these are the best America has to offer out side of NewYawk.. The LA sandwich he touts as terrific isn't about hamburger.It's about shitake mushroom and Parmesan chips. Their website refuses to quote prices, which means 'if you have to ask, you can't afford it'. And they aren't even clear if it's meat. Maybe a protein/bean/soy combo. Maybe fish.

      There are probably great burger in your town. Because this guy hasn't tasted real burgers outside of NY/LA overpriced trendy joints, doesn't mean you don't have a great burger around the corner.

      July 6, 2013 at 1:46 pm | Reply
      • Louise

        Neither White Castle or Steak 'n Shake are pan fried. They are fried on a grill. White Castle sucks and gives bad gas. Steak 'n Shake is always good, the best in fact.

        July 6, 2013 at 5:36 pm | Reply
        • I LOVE burgers

          Please seek help if you think SnS is the best you either need to find a microwave burger from a gas station or get some taste buds. Your choice but no mater which one you choose you are in for a revaluation of flavor (compared to SnS).

          July 7, 2013 at 6:01 am |
  21. whatittoya

    You missed Vicky's Van (now a restaurant) in Montgomery, Alabama. Definitely worth researching.

    July 6, 2013 at 10:44 am | Reply
  22. MeSoHungryMeHungryLongTime

    +1 for FUDDRUCKERS. The bun is so soft and buttery, the beef is perfect and the wedge fries with that jalapeno cheese... gah, that's it, I'm going tomorrow.

    July 6, 2013 at 7:33 am | Reply
  23. VATech7840

    I love Fuddruckers!

    July 6, 2013 at 2:24 am | Reply
    • AleeD® From Home Sweet Home

      I miss Fuddruckers. :( Top 10 burger places ever.

      July 7, 2013 at 9:59 am | Reply
  24. bull

    this list is bull shit... no corporations or even chains should even be in the running... in and out ? seriously? High schoolers can't do anything right even burgers... white castle? please its cardboard trash... waste of my time... theres 5 places in my home town with better burgers than umami... must have been written by a vegetarian

    July 6, 2013 at 1:30 am | Reply
    • VladT

      I didn't realize being a "corporation" magically makes one unable to make a burger.

      That being said, White castle sucks

      July 7, 2013 at 8:57 am | Reply
  25. Myrszune

    Land of the free, home of the whopper.

    July 6, 2013 at 1:15 am | Reply
  26. Pacific Dining Car

    May we present for your consideration the Pacific Dining Car's lamb burger, "an impossibly tender round of ground lamb permeated with herbs, topped with a lemon and mint-tinged yogurt sauce and served on a soft, chewy roll" – laweekly.com

    July 6, 2013 at 12:20 am | Reply
  27. John

    The Black & Blue at The Burger Stand at the Casbah in Lawrence Kansas.

    Blue cheese & granny smith apple chutney on Kobe beef. Fantastic.

    July 5, 2013 at 11:40 pm | Reply
    • Michael

      The Casbah has gone downhill a little bit in recent years, but *still* makes some of the best burgers I have had anywhere, with the exception of...its sister pub, Dempsey's (the original location of the Burger Stand that is now at Casbah), which boasts a more traditional pub atmosphere and is more consistently transcendent

      July 6, 2013 at 2:22 am | Reply
  28. Nursehope

    The Det burger at Del Rio restaurant in Ann Arbor is a classic. The patty is steamed in beer and topped with sautéed Vidalia onions and black olives. Simple but luscious.

    July 5, 2013 at 10:00 pm | Reply
    • A2mama

      Sadly the Del closed in 2003.

      July 6, 2013 at 12:42 pm | Reply
  29. brosauce

    I love steak n shake because of their prices. Not only do the burgers blow the doors off the garbage at Wendy's and Carls Jr but but they are like half the cost. I havent seen a double cheeseburger combo for less than $6 since the 90s. Burgers arent supposed to be expensive, and price plays a big part in what makes a burger truly good. Five Guys is good but when I walk out of there after paying over $9 I certainly dont feel like I got my moneys worth, I feel way more satisfied after Steak n Shake.

    July 5, 2013 at 9:57 pm | Reply
    • I LOVE burgers

      You really need to reed my reply to Louise above...

      July 7, 2013 at 6:04 am | Reply
  30. Dan

    Dead cow is the way to go.

    July 5, 2013 at 9:52 pm | Reply
  31. OldJoe

    Duke's by the beach in Ventura, CA.
    "The Ball of Wax".
    Don't forget the hot peppers on the side.
    Dang. I'm drooling all over the keyboard.

    July 5, 2013 at 9:39 pm | Reply
  32. dew

    my vote goes to the........ Scenic Drive inn.....Modesto, CA. Try the Jack Dempsey Knockout...... it is the best

    July 5, 2013 at 8:41 pm | Reply
  33. cal

    how is lamb a burger and not Louis' Lunch burgers? Plus Connecticut's steamed cheeseburgers are the best burgers in the country

    July 5, 2013 at 8:02 pm | Reply
    • dude

      nobody has been to every place in american that serves burgers bro

      July 5, 2013 at 9:41 pm | Reply
      • rickz70

        Is that a job? Can I apply? Sure, it'll cost a fortune for health insurance, but I won't need a retirement plan.

        July 6, 2013 at 9:22 am | Reply
  34. EbonyDelite

    Since I can't afford to travel the country, I must stick with the big franchises. Carl's Jr. is the best I've found so far. Better taste and freshness by far. Gotta run...

    July 5, 2013 at 7:18 pm | Reply
    • Nagger

      Blacks sure are funny people!

      July 5, 2013 at 7:43 pm | Reply
      • john

        really? what the hell is wrong with you man? You gonna throw out racist comments and make fun of people who don't have enough money to travel on a cnn website and think you're funny to somebody? You are a disgrace to white people "bro"

        July 5, 2013 at 8:02 pm | Reply
      • LB221

        You're worthless. And a disgrace.

        July 5, 2013 at 8:18 pm | Reply
      • Frank

        What's wrong with you??
        Don't use those stupid comments here!

        July 6, 2013 at 12:22 pm | Reply
  35. Burger Man

    You missed the best sliders in America - Cozy's in Salina, Ks. Been making those little gems there since the 20's. The air is redolent with the tantalizing scent of the grilled onions in this tiny little place, cooked right into the meat, and you'll smell 'em in your car for 2 days when you take home a bag - intoxicating like Chanel #5!

    July 5, 2013 at 6:51 pm | Reply
    • Intergalactic Pimp

      Yes! They absolutely have a great burger. The best slider I've ever had.

      July 5, 2013 at 11:06 pm | Reply
  36. CWood

    Obviously, if you haven't seen real sliders, you need to go to a little place in Memphis, HUEY's, best burgers around for years and years, and beautiful little sliders....The Little Miners Trio, one with pepper jack cheese and jalapenos, one with bacon and cheddar, and one with swiss and mushrooms....real burgers, real little buns.

    July 5, 2013 at 5:44 pm | Reply
    • Tyler

      I live in San Diego and visit Memphis frequently for work: I love Huey's! The one across from the Peabody is open to 1 virtually every night, so you can stop and get a burger even when you arrive late

      July 6, 2013 at 6:14 pm | Reply
  37. Tracy

    Matt's by far is the best burger. When you come visit MPLS, check it out. 5-8 Club is good but sometimes it depends on who is cooking them. Waiting in line @ Matt's is so worth it. But be careful, the cheese inside is very HOT!!

    July 5, 2013 at 5:16 pm | Reply
    • Casey

      Hi Tracy, I live in the Twin Cities. Matt's is good, but probably not in my top ten for local burgers. Some that easily outrank it for me include: Strip Club, Blue Door Pub, Good Earth, Happy Gnome, 112 Eatery, and Five Guys. The Nook is probably better, though I won't eat there anymore as it's obvious they don't care about their product. Okay, maybe Matt's is eighth. It is better than the 5-8.

      July 6, 2013 at 8:16 pm | Reply
  38. David

    Keller's No. 5 with onions............in Dallas, Tx................................

    July 5, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Reply
  39. Amy

    Here's an idea. Eat the burger YOU like. Use your own judgement,forget what anyone else says is or isn't good. You know your own tastes.

    July 5, 2013 at 4:44 pm | Reply
  40. Gimpyknee

    If only I didn't have to get on a plane to try any of these burgers...

    July 5, 2013 at 4:21 pm | Reply
  41. tessie mae

    Also, for you White Castle haters, you have clearly never been a) a poor student, or b) drunk/high. In those circumstances, WC is the food of the gods!

    July 5, 2013 at 4:17 pm | Reply
    • john

      I've been both....White Castle still sucks......It should have made 10 WORST burger in America.......how you can even defend it is beyond me

      July 5, 2013 at 7:47 pm | Reply
      • Smarter than ewe

        It's true I've been all of those things in college and White Castle burgers are disgusting, barely edible, squares of gray fat. Because they are on this list the curve pulls all the other reviews down with them. And the Lamb burger at Breslins is also pretty weak.

        July 5, 2013 at 8:11 pm | Reply
  42. tessie mae

    Gruyere? Poppyseed rolls? Veggie burgers? Gourmet burgers of any kind? I thought this article was about what real, regular people eat. After chemo, the only thing I could even think about eating was Steak & Shake and I never tasted anything better in my life. Food is so subjective that arguing about it is an exercise in futility. Best burger I ever had-truck stop in Missouri. Just a soft bun, loosely packed patty, American cheese. You put your own condiments as you like. God, I hate "foodies".

    July 5, 2013 at 4:14 pm | Reply
    • Rob

      "real, regular people"

      iisshh.. :-/ Like there's such a thing as "unreal people". Man, get a life.

      July 5, 2013 at 4:26 pm | Reply
      • tacmarine1

        STFU Dude. Regular people... not Chefs, TV personalities... just regular folk.. Sooooooo GET a FRICKin' Life DUDE. A$$hat.

        July 5, 2013 at 5:21 pm | Reply
        • rkdres

          You're a phuckknob.

          July 5, 2013 at 7:13 pm |
      • tessie mae

        Oh there are any number of "unreal" people out there. You know perfectly well what I meant. Regular people who don't generally spend $15 for a burger. Or accompany it with artisan beer. You know the type. Perhaps you are one, which is why you are so defensive.

        July 5, 2013 at 6:22 pm | Reply
    • rkdres

      "Food is so subjective that arguing about it is an exercise in futility" ...And yet here you are arguing about it

      July 5, 2013 at 7:12 pm | Reply
    • frankie

      Relax. Nobody here is calling you a snob because you have a higher appreciation for Nascar that us lowly people cant understand, just because you dont know anything about food doesnt mean other people cant appreciate more finely tuned meals.

      July 5, 2013 at 9:39 pm | Reply
    • I LOVE burgers

      You made your opinion on food invalid by admitting you like the "food" at SnS. (and I use the term food loosely when referring to what SnS serves)

      July 7, 2013 at 6:09 am | Reply
  43. KC

    Are you people kidding? Can you even read? The TITLE of the article specifically states that these are ONE PERSON'S best NON TRADITIONAL burgers.

    God. Spare the outrage and take the time to ACTUALLY READ before you post. No wonder this country is going down the tubes.

    July 5, 2013 at 3:17 pm | Reply
    • Purple Pieman

      I mentioned Mr. Hero's Romanburger, which *IS* a non-traditional burger and is 10x better than most everything on this list. Mr. Hero's is a small chain so it's kinda hard to miss for any self-proclaimed burger "expert".

      Also, by including White Castle, this author was clearing reaching to fill out his top 10.

      July 5, 2013 at 8:44 pm | Reply
  44. JR Rei

    probably the worst food list ive ever seen, almost seems hipster, like he ironically made a list with Umami burger and White Castle on it

    July 5, 2013 at 3:06 pm | Reply
    • Bubba

      What would you recommend?

      July 5, 2013 at 3:39 pm | Reply
      • Smarter than ewe

        Shake Shack

        July 5, 2013 at 8:14 pm | Reply
        • huh

          shake shack is insultingly expensive, along with Five Guys. You can very easily go somewhere better for the money.

          July 5, 2013 at 9:28 pm |
    • mike

      There's nothing less hipster than White Castle...

      July 5, 2013 at 3:41 pm | Reply
      • Bubba

        Besides White Castle, what are other great burgers from major chains?

        July 5, 2013 at 3:45 pm | Reply
        • captain

          A chain is incapable of making a great burger. If you put white castle on a list it's quite clear you have no clue what a real burger, traditional or not, is. Stick to your caviar and capers or sir kensington's ketchup. WTF is sir kensigtons's ketchup? Next thing you know they'll be making gourmet hotdogs. All of you trying to be elitist with your food, there is nothing wrong with a CHEESEBURGER: GROUND BEEF & CHEESE are the ingredients. Some may top theirs with certain vegetables or condiments but if you have to put 100,000 different things and an abundance of 'specialty' condiments on your burger to make it taste good you clearly have no idea what a burger is. And the fact that you include a fast food burger in your list blatantly shows you really have no clue what a real hamburger is. I'm pretty sure white castle doesn't use real beef anyway. Buncha vegan black bean burger eating aristocrat wannabes ruining our good old fashion american food.

          July 5, 2013 at 4:47 pm |
        • Ben

          Captain, dang captain, grab a snickers bro and lose the b1tchiness.

          July 5, 2013 at 6:57 pm |
    • Ben

      Uh. What part of "non-traditional" did you not understand in the title of the article?

      July 5, 2013 at 6:55 pm | Reply
    • cal

      nothing like a pabst blue ribbon and some white castle

      j/k

      July 5, 2013 at 8:04 pm | Reply
  45. Wheeljack

    My favorite burgers at chain restaurants right now are the Bacon Cheeseburger at Five Guys and the Durango Burger at Firebirds. They're crazy good. Juices dripping from your chin good.

    July 5, 2013 at 2:50 pm | Reply
    • tessie mae

      I was so excited to finally eat a 5 guys burger. It was pretty good but I really didn't feel it lived up to its hype.Like I said before, food is one of those subjective things. My husband and I ate at a new restaurant as we had a groupon for $75 per couple. It was worse than school cafeteria food-honestly. Brand new place but the carpet was torn, service awful (we had to hunt down the valet parker and look for the waiter to replenish our drinks), we were invited to help ourselves to the salad bar?? which consisted of torn head lettuce, shredded cheddar, cottage cheese, etc. Meat was gristly and tough, they offered one side-mixed vegetables. As in, frozen Birdseye mixed vegetables. The place was packed but the more we go by, the less crowded it is. Go figure!

      July 5, 2013 at 6:35 pm | Reply
  46. ELaine

    Are all those photos taken with an iPhone? I just read an article about the Chicago Sun-Times firing its photojournalists. These look amateur. Yikes.

    July 5, 2013 at 2:45 pm | Reply
  47. SRJ

    There's place in San Diego called Hodad's. I'd rank their burger #1 any day...

    July 5, 2013 at 2:36 pm | Reply
    • tom

      Hamburger Mary's in SD was pretty good. Also the waterfront Bar (oldest bar in SD).

      I havent been to SD in a couple of years, but when I lived there, it was hamburger heaven

      July 5, 2013 at 2:42 pm | Reply
  48. Johnnyboy

    I guess you guys have never heard of Nitrates? Cold Cuts are cured with them

    July 5, 2013 at 2:28 pm | Reply
  49. mike

    "In-N-Out [is] just the poor man’s Steak ’n Shake"

    LOL WUT?

    July 5, 2013 at 2:16 pm | Reply
    • I LOVE burgers

      Right on how dare they insult In&Out like that SnS should be illegal it sucks that bad.

      July 7, 2013 at 6:13 am | Reply
  50. outabucks

    Way ta go Sid. How could any White Castle burger EVER make a top ten list!

    July 5, 2013 at 2:10 pm | Reply
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