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How Do You Like Your Burgers?

'The Burger' by Todd Brock, Serious Eats

'The Burger' by Todd Brock, Serious Eats

I’ve been working on a Food story about burgers that go beyond the usual ground beef patty topped with cheese.

Recently, I spoke with barbecue champ Chris Hart, who has a new cookbook with his team partner, chef Andy Husbands — “Wicked Good Burgers: Fearless Recipes and Uncompromising Techniques for the Ultimate Patty” (Fair Winds Press, $22.99) — that includes burgers made with everything from salmon belly to beets.

During our conversation, Hart professed his love for Atlanta’s famous Holeman & Finch burger, calling it “awesome.”

And last week, the Serious Eats “A Hamburger Today” feature had an online review of the burgers at The General Muir.

Atlanta’s Todd Brock came to praise chef Todd Ginsberg’s new dinner creation that’s simply called The Burger but is loaded with house-cured-and-smoked pastrami, Gruyere cheese, caramelized onions, Russian dressing and pickles on an onion roll:

http://aht.seriouseats.com/archives/2013/06/the-general-muir-burger-review-atlanta-ga.html.

Questions:

Do you like your burgers plain or fancy?

Made with proteins other than beef?

What’s the best burger in Atlanta, right now?

— Bob Townsend, for the AJC Food and More blog.

27 comments Add your comment

Bhorsoft

June 17th, 2013
6:58 pm

I’m a burger traditionalist. Ground Beef, preferably a mix of chuck and sirloin, a bun with or without sesame seeds. Your choice of lettuce, tomato, onion, ketchup, mustard and mayo. Onions can be raw or grilled. Maybe a slice of cheese melted on the patty but not required. I don’t need bacon, eggs, salsa, guacamole, butter, brie, fois gras, caviar, or anything else weird on my burger. I don’t need turkey burgers or veggie burgers or salmon burgers. I don’t need Kaiser rolls or Ciabatta bread or tortilla wraps. Until E-Coli became rampant I used to like my burgers medium rare. I prefer them grilled over an open flame, but fried on a griddle works as well.

For this type of burger, Cheeseburger Bobby’s is consistently good. Five Guys isn’t bad and Steak & Shake even does a reasonable burger. You can get a pretty good burger at The Counter. I’ve also had some great burgers at hole in the wall mom & pop places out in the middle of no where.

Marc

June 17th, 2013
7:35 pm

I have a little carniceria around the corner from me that makes the best chorizo rojo. I’ve been making burger out of that occasionally. :)

Progress

June 17th, 2013
7:56 pm

Five Guys. Simple and straightforward. The usual toppings- cheese, onion, lettuce, tomato, mayo, ketchup. (Mustard is for hot dogs.) The most exotic things I’ll put on a burger are mushrooms, bacon, and jalapenos for a little extra kick. Nothing fancy. No need for that.

Ned Ludd

June 17th, 2013
8:06 pm

With a beer-at the bar-at Georges-nuff said-none better.

Kar

June 17th, 2013
8:41 pm

Doused with worchester and maybe a little hot sauce before hand.

Topped with the classics, lettuce, onion & tomato. Maybe a little mustard.

If I make it at home, mix the meat loosely with a little dried minced onion, mace spice and parsley too.

NO CHEESE. I want to taste the burger, not a dominating cheddar, a distracting blue or a bland swiss.

lkjlkj

June 17th, 2013
9:02 pm

I think the quality of the beef is the prime factor in how good a burger is. My two favorites are The Vortex and The Counter. I’ve yet to try the burger at either Bocado or Holeman and Finch, but I’ve had most of the rest.

Gourmet Creations

June 17th, 2013
9:04 pm

Love burgers with the works!

William

June 18th, 2013
12:44 am

1A-Bocado, 1B-Holeman and Finch. So much better than all the rest.

[...] How Do You Like Your Burgers? [...]

Baltisraul....

June 18th, 2013
8:57 am

I side w/ the majority here. Good grilled 80/20 beef. Grilled bun but put the tomato on the side. I don’t like to put anything cold on a hot grilled hamburger. If you use seasonings (salt, pepper etc) incorporate into the meat while forming the patty. Never use a press! Always form patty loosely packed.

Lorenzo

June 18th, 2013
12:59 pm

H&F and Bocado have their appeal, but I just really can’t get into the currently fashionable “fast food” or thin-double-patty style. I much prefer a thick patty that oozes bright red juice when I bite into it. The Vortex and Earl satisfy my criteria. Maybe Highland Tap? I confess I haven’t been to any of these places in quite a while, as I try to limit my burger calories.

Typical Redneck

June 18th, 2013
3:07 pm

Traditional.

Baltisraul....

June 18th, 2013
4:33 pm

Kar…..I never thought putting a piece of cheese on detracted from the taste of any burger! You may be in a very, very small minority on that advice.

Ptc dawg

June 18th, 2013
5:08 pm

Nice chuck patty, grilled over real wood/ charcoal. Sides or not

Art

June 19th, 2013
8:55 am

80/20 beef formed loosely with salt and pepper, maybe a little Worcestershire. Grilled over an open flame. I still do medium rare. Fresh bun, maybe sesame seeds but nothing more. Lettuce, tomato, pickle, onions, mayo (Duke’s) and ketchup. Mustard IS for sausages. Sometimes cheddar cheese but agree with Kar that the cheese can turn the taste tide. Aside from mine at home, the better ones are Five Guys, Cheeseburger Bobby’s, Steak-n-Shake and an HF burger at the ballpark.

Rick

June 19th, 2013
9:43 am

The best burger in Atlanta is actually in Lawrenceville. The Sink Burger at Local Republic beats H&F and Bocado

Edward

June 19th, 2013
9:45 am

I rate H&F burger highly, but fighting the crowds to get one is a turn off. I find there are several places that make a really great burger. Farmburger is very good, George’s in VaHi is still a favorite, as well. Vortex and Smashburger are delicious, too. Also Hobnob does a great burger. And a Steak-n-Shake burger can be great at 1am. My favorite overall would be a Farmburger with caramelized onions, Kikapoo organic blue cheese, Pine Street bacon, and an over-easy egg. Even though those are some strong topping tastes, the flavor of the meat still comes through… the blend is heavenly.

Typical Redneck

June 19th, 2013
10:51 am

I read the mustard comments and disagree. I use two slices of ripened tomatos (salted and peppered of course) instaed of the ketchup and add mustard and mayo.

Baltisraual.....

June 19th, 2013
12:25 pm

Art, lets agree to disagree, ok? Mayo must be Hellmann’s. Mustard should never be on sausage, ketchup is the answer there. Though not mentioned, never put ketchup on a hot dog!! In most states that’s a felony but no jail time included!

Baltisraual.....

June 19th, 2013
12:30 pm

Art, never hear anyone say that a piece of cheese could overpower a hamburger until you and Kar mentioned it. What type of cheese are you using, Limburger?

Baltisraual.....

June 19th, 2013
12:30 pm

Art, never hear anyone say that a piece of cheese could overpower a hamburger until you and Kar mentioned it. What type of cheese are you using, Limburger?

GaPeachy

June 20th, 2013
10:46 am

I looove a good burger now and then, and usually go for the traditional toppings: lettuce, tomato, cheese and when I can indulge bacon! Since I have been trying to cut back on the fat one of my favorite new burgers is the bison burger at Ted’s Montana grill, it is about 8 grams of fat per ounce where most restaurant beef burgers are at least 15 per ounce though usually more, but its still juicy and flavorful.

Dave

June 20th, 2013
2:19 pm

Baltisraual, agree nothing cold on a burger. But tomatoes should never be kept in the fridge anyway. And I always take onion slices out and let them get to room temp. Agree with other posters here, no fancy bread, but I’m still looking for the perfect bun. I mostly use 93/7, but change it up with 80/20 for variety. Sometimes mix up different mustards and always have a variety of different ones on the table. No cheese. My main ingredient is twigs from the hickory tree outside my back door and a hot charcoal fire.

Baltisraul.....

June 20th, 2013
10:16 pm

Dave, if you have a partial tomato, you best keep it in the fridge. I never keep onions in the fridge unless they are partials, like the tomatoes. Does nobody like a good cheeseburger anymore?

If you find some pretzel buns, give them a try. You may get hooked like I have.

For me anything leaner than 80/20 just gives up way too much flavor. Can’t imagine a burger w/ 93/07.

Baltisraul.....

June 20th, 2013
10:16 pm

Dave, if you have a partial tomato, you best keep it in the fridge. I never keep onions in the fridge unless they are partials, like the tomatoes. Does nobody like a good cheeseburger anymore?

If you find some pretzel buns, give them a try. You may get hooked like I have.

For me anything leaner than 80/20 just gives up way too much flavor. Can’t imagine a burger w/ 93/07.

Dave

June 21st, 2013
4:04 pm

Baltisraul, definitely sliced up tomatoes and onion go in the fridge, but when eating them leftover, I let them come to room temp. But my wife and I will usually polish off a tomato anyway, so there’s rarely any leftover. As for the lean meat, I cook to medium rare+ and it’s pretty darn tasty, and juicy too, at least for us. Never heard of pretzel buns, but I’ll look out for them. Thanks for the tip.