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Best burger in Northern NJ?

John Oct 9, 2004 03:02 AM

Anyone have any recommendations for an extraordinary burger in the Nothern NJ area?

Many thanks,


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  1. c
    Chuck Oct 9, 2004 06:58 PM

    The Iron Horse in Westwood makes a good, fresh meat hand pattied burger and puts the cheese in the middle. You get fresh cut thick railroad fries with it and they give you excellent sour pickles and very, very good homemade cowl slaw on the table. It's a nice clean and relaxing environment. Reasonable...Nothing fancy.

    You may also see some pro football players, who live up that way and eat there during the week. Lee Tremble, Jr., the owner, is well-known in the area. A good guy with good food...Been there for 30 years.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Chuck
      Michele Cindy Oct 11, 2004 08:31 AM

      I also really like there burgers with cheese in the middle.

      1. re: Michele Cindy
        P. James Mar 2, 2005 12:47 PM

        How can you overlook The Fireplace on 17 in Paramus. The place has been there 50 years and the burgers are a life-changing experience.

    2. b
      big ern Oct 11, 2004 09:25 AM

      for a religious burger experience, you can't afford to miss out on White Manna in Hackensack. the burgers are like white castle sliders, except better. a must go.

      13 Replies
      1. re: big ern
        Chuck Oct 11, 2004 07:54 PM

        Big Ern:

        (I know this Ern Dude knows food)....Do you really like White Mana better than White Castle? Just returned from Bergen County. Never got to go to White Castle or Tracy's this time...Big disappointment.

        Hey, please try Tracy's 9 Mile House in Little Ferry and tell me what you think. I know I mentioned it to you once before. I did get to Hirums (Love that place) and Brooklyn Pizza though.

        Too little time and too many places I missed...like Rutt's Hut, Tick Tock, The Horse, Tracy's, Patsy's, etc. You guys don't know how lucky you are living in Bergen County when it comes to food! Life is a trade off.

        1. re: Chuck
          big ern Oct 12, 2004 09:14 AM

          oh yeah, without question to i like white manna better than white castle...i don't really no what it is, i just do. the meat just seems better to me at white manna.

          Actually, i know i often mention the old Hagler's in Oradell where i grew up, but they made one of the best damn cheeseburger's i've ever wrapped my lips around. made right on the griddle, soaking up all the bacon and tayolor ham juices. incredible. Still haven't been to new incarnation of Hagler's yet, which is called The Diner....no thanks.

          Still haven't made it to Tracy's 9 Mile yet though. You went to Brookly Pizza and not Lido's????

          I'm not a big hot dog person though, so I can do without Rutt's Hutt, Callahan's, etc..

          Been on huge taco kick lately, going to a ton of authentic mexian joints in West NY, North Bergen, Gutenberg, etc.

          1. re: Chuck
            big ern Oct 12, 2004 09:15 AM

            oh yeah, without question to i like white manna better than white castle...i don't really no what it is, i just do. the meat just seems better to me at white manna.

            Actually, i know i often mention the old Hagler's in Oradell where i grew up, but they made one of the best damn cheeseburger's i've ever wrapped my lips around. made right on the griddle, soaking up all the bacon and tayolor ham juices. incredible. Still haven't been to new incarnation of Hagler's yet, which is called The Diner....no thanks.

            Still haven't made it to Tracy's 9 Mile yet though. You went to Brookly Pizza and not Lido's????

            I'm not a big hot dog person though, so I can do without Rutt's Hutt, Callahan's, etc..

            Been on huge taco kick lately, going to a ton of authentic mexian joints in West NY, North Bergen, Gutenberg, etc.

            1. re: big ern
              JOE Oct 12, 2004 02:29 PM


              1. re: JOE
                big ern Oct 12, 2004 02:46 PM

                oh man...i couldn't even tell you the names of the places i go into there are so many. most are tiny little joints that just say "taqueria" on the signs.
                I apologize for being so vague, but unfortunately i don't pay as much attention as i should when i'm in the area, which is quite frequently.

                my best advice, and i'm being totally serious, is drive up and down the streets between Bergenline Blvd and Blvd East, from like 60th street to 73rd street. you'll discover A TON of authentic little mexican/central american places that are dirt cheap and delicious. lots of places right on Bergenline Blvd as well in the 50s, 60s and 70s.
                An amazing brazilian place is on like 71st and Bergenline...all you can eat churrascaria for like $10. the best.

                don't know much about pizza in the area...sorry, and good luck on the taco hunt.

              2. re: big ern
                Chuck Oct 12, 2004 05:17 PM

                Hey...I use have pizza at Lido's once a week in the mid-80's! Oh, that thin thin crust and their oil/vinegar with crumbled blue cheese salad dressing. That puppy is still there and apparently going strong. But, I'll tell ya....Brooklyn Pizza is doing some serious business.

                You know, right down the block from Lido is a fairly new place my Sister-In-Law took us to. Brick Oven - Cannot remember the name - Perhaps it's Presto's? - Right on the corner where three streets converge. The food was very good and the pizza, while nothing like Brooklyn Pizza, was very, very good. Check it out.

                I absolutely remember Hagler's (sp)in Oradell - Was it Kinderkmack Rd? I know the road winds around. A tiny little place I never tried in all my years of living in Bergen County. Was it near the River Edge Diner? I believe they had a brown and cream colored wooden sign.

                Hey, were you even alive when The China Quarter (Tenafly) and Hing's China Inn (Englewood Cliffs)were around? The two best Chinese restaurants ever to operate in Bergen County.

                To this day, I still have never had better American Style Chinese food - Oh, that's my new term - Susan and Serge, also transplanted Hounds now in Florida, have rightfully reminded me of the differences recently - American Chinese vs Chinese Chinese food. She'd call China 46 - Chinese Chinese food I think.

                1. re: Chuck
                  big ern Oct 12, 2004 05:28 PM

                  yeah, brookly pizza is damn good, but i still love going to lido's and getting a thin crust pizza with onion and anchovy, some garlic bread and a pitcher of beer. can't beat the atmosphere there.

                  No, the place you are thinking of isn't Haglers, but used be Breyers (because that used to be kind of close to the R.E. Diner. and Hagler's was in fact on Kinderkamack as well, but no where near RE Diner). Breyers was another greasy spoon back in the day, but has since become a sushi joint (used to go a few years ago, but when one of the sushi chefs left, i stopped going).

                  Can't say i recall China Quarter or Hing's...i'm 28 yrs old so maybe before my time. And your friends are right...China 46 is a Chinese CHinese joint. very authentic. you don't go there to get steamed chicken and broccoli, let's but it that way. rather i go for the tripe, shark fin soup, spicy tongue...all the weird crap you would otherwise find in chinatown.

                  1. re: Chuck
                    NYCnowLA Jan 12, 2007 03:51 PM

                    i still compare all chinese food to China Quater! we used to go there nearly every sunday growing up. i even had my 10th birthday party there!!!

                    1. re: NYCnowLA
                      goodhealthgourmet Sep 20, 2007 12:48 PM

                      omg...i grew up in tenafly and we always used to eat at either china quarter...or peking duck house in cresskill [or was it closter?]!

                      this is an old post so i'm not sure you'll ever read this response nycnowla, but if you do...are you from tenafly?

                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                        lhing Nov 7, 2007 05:28 PM

                        Sorry to cross post here, but it appears these posts are recent.

                        I did a google search on Hing's China Inn, and it came to these pages. I knew there must have been some devoted folks somewhere out here in cyberspace.

                        No joke, my parents owned Hing's China Inn. China Quarter was the big competition down the road in Tenafly.

                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                          NYCnowLA Nov 9, 2007 11:20 PM

                          not tenafly, cresskill. and peking duck house is i closter, i believe they are still open.

                  2. re: Chuck
                    Dcemont Sep 20, 2007 12:41 PM

                    you kidding Big Ern? White Castle is afast food chain in low income neighborhoods serves the lowest grade of beef possible. White mana grinds fresh daily. The only thing in common is the size of the burgers.

                  3. re: big ern
                    piccola Jan 13, 2007 12:35 AM

                    There's one in JC too.

                  4. b
                    Brandy76 Oct 18, 2004 02:35 PM

                    I tried Iron horse in Westwood, and their burgers are so delicious, the cheese oozing out the middle is really unique.

                    Only downside is the waiting area is very small, forcing you to wait by the bar area.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Brandy76
                      Chuck Oct 21, 2004 08:19 PM

                      Brandy....Glad you liked The Horse. Lee does a good job...been doing it for many, many years. Just a comfortable place.

                    2. g
                      gdtobme Jan 12, 2007 05:15 AM

                      While visiting family in Paramus (from Los Angeles) we had lunch at The Fireplace. I liked their burgers and would want to return. It tasted very home-made. I was told that it's been there for ages but had been sold and will be closing. How sad!

                      1. l
                        lrapetrie Sep 18, 2007 07:45 PM

                        Burger Boys in Fairview on Tonnelle across from the 7-11. They have really good burgers and their french fries are awsome. Everything is very fresh. It reminded me a lot of Fatburger. The menu is pretty limited (Burgers, fries, shakes) but it was really, really good.

                        1. z
                          zhelder Sep 20, 2007 05:41 PM

                          Five Guys recently opened a branch in Hackensack, in the Home Depot shopping center. They're a southern chain, and the layout does remind me of southern casual restaurants. Kind of ironic that they picked Hackensack, as that's a town pretty far removed from down home Southern towns. Good burgers and fries, fair prices for what you get. I read somewhere about a local clone joint, I think in Fairview, that copies their style and menu.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: zhelder
                            triviaguru Sep 21, 2007 02:38 PM

                            How can you guys overlook Fuddruckers?. Having lived in Manhattan, I've tried all of the usual haunts (Melon's, Burger Joint, etc), and Fuddrucker's always keeps me coming back to Northern NJ

                            1. re: triviaguru
                              PhillyNative Nov 10, 2007 12:29 PM

                              Fuddruckers actually isn't bad. I will take it over the fast fooders, but I'm so darned impatient, and they always have a line at Fudds. I take out because the roar of the masses is too loud in there most days and nights. I miss that Fat Tuesday frozen bar they used to have about ten years ago. Still while waiting for my takeout, they had beer bottles on ice and that was a pleasure. Now that Five Guys has opened, I have to decide if I want that flame grilled Fuddruckers quality or the griddle fried style of FG.

                          2. e
                            ELA Sep 22, 2007 07:50 PM

                            When you are talking about burgers, the White Manna and White Castle thing is always going to come up. Personally, I think those are more "fast food" type of burgers, more of an alternative to Mickey D's, Wendy's, BK, etc. Different kind of burger. I think the best burgers in Northern NJ, for my tastes, are at The Iron Horse in Westwood, Davey's Locker in Park Ridge, The Bicycle Club in Englewood, and the sleeper is JD's Steak Pit in Fort Lee (the burger is not on the menu). Enjoy!


                            1 Reply
                            1. re: ELA
                              goodhealthgourmet Sep 22, 2007 09:04 PM

                              wow, talk about a blast from the past. it's been many, many years for me, but i recall the bike club used to do one hell of a burger. as for jd's steak pit...never even noticed the absence of a burger on their menu because we always adored their onion soup, fried zucchini, and ribs. but now you have me curious....

                            2. r
                              RayP Nov 7, 2007 06:20 PM

                              I'm not a big chain fan and i've had burgers all over...but RUBY TUESDAY's Triple Prime Burger is absolutely the BEST burger i've ever had...and i've been to all the places already posted here.

                              4 Replies
                              1. re: RayP
                                michele cindy Nov 8, 2007 07:06 AM

                                That's funny you mention that. I haven't eaten them, but my did swears that Ruby Tues. ini burgers are great.

                                1. re: RayP
                                  PhillyNative Nov 10, 2007 12:58 PM

                                  I loved the Triple Prime Burger - had it three times before they slipped and I haven't tried them since. I always ordered it medium and I think it was that buttery au jus that did the trick. It didn't need any condiments. The Garden State Plaza Mall location is pure madness though. Parking is impossible without a good hike in from what seems like another area code. The commercials were the lure, but in the end, as with most of the chain joints, you hope Ferris Bueller is on his game back in the kitchen on your night.

                                  1. re: RayP
                                    Alastor Aug 21, 2008 08:05 AM

                                    You must not have had many burgers.

                                    1. re: Alastor
                                      MattInNJ Aug 21, 2008 08:15 AM

                                      You resurrected this thread! so I'm gonna comment on it. I thought RT's triple prime burger was OK at best, it was not going to blow my mind. IMHO the best burger in Northern NJ is served at the Copeland in Morristown (in the Governor Morris Hotel). Some other great places for Burgers are the Sun Tavern in Fanwood (don't know about other locations) and The Stage House in Scotch Plains.

                                  2. a
                                    Arunamatata Nov 8, 2007 04:35 PM

                                    If you are willing to go a LITTLE outside of Bergen county, you should try the Saloon in Pearl River, NY off rt 304 (Kinderkamack turns into 304 if you go north into NY). It's the right hand turn onto Central Ae off of 304 N. Supposedly one of the greatest burgers in the area.

                                    1. s
                                      Sdenred Nov 9, 2007 09:51 AM

                                      The Fireplace, Route 17, Paramus. Simple, tasty fast food. Not to be missed.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: Sdenred
                                        sixelagogo Nov 10, 2007 04:35 AM

                                        i disagree about the fireplace...granted, i liked that the place wasn't a chain, but i felt i was eating a frozen chain burger.

                                        1. re: sixelagogo
                                          Gorgonzilla Aug 21, 2008 12:41 PM

                                          I don't understand all the hype for the Fireplace as well - it must be nostalgia. The burgers are bland and very ordinary (not extraordinary in the least, like the OP was requesting), just barely a notch above typical McDonalds/Burger King fast food, and they're overpriced for what they are (essentially a tiny, flat, bland fried fast food patty on a lackluster bun with processed cheese - or without - and you have to put your own condiments, from a very limited condiment bar, on yourself). I've given this place three chances, and it's been three strikes for me.

                                      2. p
                                        PhillyNative Nov 10, 2007 12:47 PM

                                        My favorite hideaway is called General Poors right on Main Street near the courthouse in Hackensack. I almost hate to publicize it because I love how easy it is to get a table on weekday nights and weekend afternoons. Try the "Big Bad Bortie Burger" with bacon and onions and mushrooms. The onions and mushrooms are sauteed properly - nice and brown around the edges. And by the way, they have the best Nachos by far that I've ever had! Also good stuffed mushrooms, good calamari, and a tasty shrimp ceasar salad. They are packed during weekday lunch for the courthouse crowd. I love that in the years I've been going there ( after discovering them during a spell on jury duty) the portions are still generous and the quality excellent. They also have a full bar with regulars watching the sports on TV. I usually keep it quiet that I am a Philly sports team fan when I'm in there.

                                        1. sixelagogo Aug 22, 2008 05:31 AM

                                          More Burger Input:
                                          Had a delicious one at Tommy Fox's in scenic Bergenfield; probably the best i've had in a while...it's not cheap (7-9 dollars), but with Franzenkanner Weisse on tap, it's now a Go-To destination.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: sixelagogo
                                            rruben1 Aug 23, 2008 11:04 PM

                                            California Burger Deluxe at the Alexis Diner, Denville, New Jersey.
                                            The two onion rings they throw in on the pile of fries are the piece de resistance. Always fresh, juicy, and flavorful burgers on a good bun with excellent lettuce, tomato and onion.

                                            I know it's a diner. It's a GREAT diner, though.

                                            1. re: sixelagogo
                                              dock Sep 16, 2008 01:36 PM

                                              thanks six. went saturday nite and enjoyed the burger very much. very tasty meat coarse ground and loosely packed. excellent. and my wife had the fish and chips which were the best i've had in bergen county. we usually get our burgers at the 101 pub in teaneck but although these are not as big, i believe they are more flavorful.

                                            2. ChefJune Aug 24, 2008 11:26 PM

                                              For my money, it's the burger at Edward's Steak House on Marin Blvd in Jersey City. They serve the burgers only in the downstairs "Tavern Room." They are juicy, tasty, and always cooked perfectly to your order! with or without the cheese of your choice.

                                              1. n
                                                NJfoodLover Sep 14, 2008 11:26 AM

                                                For Bergen County it is the Iron Horse all the way. I LOVE Burgers and this place really makes my mouth water.

                                                If you are willing to go out of Bergen, there is this great Diner in Butler that also does stuffed burgers. The stuffed and their plain burgers seem to be made fresh and are sooo good.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: NJfoodLover
                                                  Ellross Sep 15, 2008 09:40 AM

                                                  I agree about the Iron Horse. Just consistently excellent. I also like the burgers at Daveys Locker in Montvale.

                                                2. d
                                                  danepstein Sep 17, 2008 05:25 PM

                                                  I vote for Pal's Cabin in West Orange.

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