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Jun 11, 2007 08:00 PM

Best Burger in NOLA?

OK, the Yo Mama thread got me to thinking about burgers in the City. I was a big fan of the old Ruby Red's, across from the Mint on Esplanade. Never quite got into Ground Patty, and have had ups n' downs at Port of Call. After Ruby's, I really liked the old Audubon Tavern II's burgers, but I think they, like Ruby's, are gone.

Who serves up the best burger in NOLA? I don't think I want to limit it by price, so the sky's the limit. PHX has been beseiged by a half-dozen "gourment" burger joints over the last 9 mos. with about six more to come. Anything really happening on the "burger scene" in NOLA? What are your favs, and why?

Food for thought,

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  1. Port Of Call is still the best in town. Anywhere perhaps . . . However, other good choices are Lakeview Harbor (on Harrison), G&B at River Bend, the Alibi Lounge and Clover Grill in the Quarter. Yo Mama has a variety of options, but their burgers aren't as good as the others mentioned.

    1. I'm partial to GB's (Maple at Carrollton). They were better pre-K, but they are still large, ground fresh daily, and hand formed. I was disappointed in my burger at Camellia, I'll stick to breakfast food there from now on.

      If you're looking to make your own, the very best beef I've had is from Whispering Pines Farm at the farmer's market.

      1. You can't go wrong with:

        Port of Call (Quarter)
        Yo Mamas (Quarter)
        Lakeview Harbor (Lakeview)
        Camellia Grill (Riverbend)
        Houston's (Metairie)

        1. Don't forget snug harbor... same people as port of call but no wait!

          6 Replies
          1. re: Adrienne

            Not to mention being the unquestioned best jazz club in the city! (but, for some reason a terrible wine place...always has been, and I suppose it always will be)

            1. re: Adrienne

              Yeah, but for some reason the burgers at Snug just don't taste as good as POC. Same goes for Lakeview Harbor. As for the Beachcorner, the burgers are big and cheap with no wait, but left me wishing I had gone to POC.

              Lakeview Harbor
              911 Harrison Ave, New Orleans, LA 70124

              1. re: JazzyB

                Since this has been revived, two ex-Orleanians came to town last week and stayed in an apartment down the street from POC. They tried to "go home again" with mixed results. Bignets were still a big hit but POC's burgers weren't. They thought you got a "handful" but it was a lot of dressing and not the meat they remembered.

                CP was acceptable but they really liked August, Herbsaint, and NOLA, three restaurants that weren't around when they were living here.

                701 Saint Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70130

                1. re: collardman

                  That is sad to hear. Back in my days, POC was pretty good. Over the years, they have gotten great recs. here, so I assumed that they had improved over the decades. Guess that I missed the heyday.



                  1. re: Bill Hunt

                    Missed this on the original run-thru. I ha ve not had a sit-up-and-take-notice hamburger ANYWHERE, even outside New Orleans, in years. I used to like the Port of Call ones like everyone else and at one time, when Nick ran the kitchen, the fat Harry's stuff was good, although that might have been becuase it was 4:00 in the morning. I practically had a charge account at AT II.

                    I have not thought of Ruby Red's in years...first went there in the 1960's....

                    Port of Call
                    838 Esplanade Ave, New Orleans, LA 70116

                    Ruby Red's
                    1525 Lapalco Blvd, Harvey, LA 70058

                    1. re: Bill Hunt

                      nah dont sweat it, bill, POC is still an amazing burger. just took my meat-loving, restaurateur father there last week and he was very impressed, again. even Roadie (helluva bartender) noted the meat was especially good that evening.

                      the "dressing" on a POC burger is certainly a mountain (cheese, fresh RED tomato, fresh thick-cut white onion, lettuce), but it is the meat and the potato that make the whole package. theyre perfected the art and as a sometimes-weekly patron i must vouch for it.

              2. Cafe Freret in Uptown makes a great burger. I can't remember the name of it right now, but their specialty burger is to die for! Mushrooms, bacons, cheese, grilled onions... it's not for the faint of heart.

                12 Replies
                1. re: angel816

                  I love Port of Call for the insane cocktails and really just the hell of it, but I cannot remember the last time I got a burger there that wasn't about 5 minutes past well done. When I ordered Medium rare.
                  I am not a huge chain fan, but, in a pinch, you can get a damn good burger at Gordon Biersch.
                  And for a truly decadent and dirt cheap option, head to St. Bernard Parish for the deep fried burger po boy-style from Crabby J's. Sooo wrong, but sooo good.

                  1. re: kpangaro

                    Hunt - I had a great experience at Port of Call. Now that Kpangaro mentions it, it was a bit on the done side - but still really juicy and really, really flavorful, so nothing a Neptune's Monsoon couldn't cure...OK my only gripe with the food was that I don't recall FAKE as in ARTIFICIAL Bacon Bits on the baked potato. Could they have just cooked up some bacon slices and crumbled them - why would that have been so hard? I don't recall the Bac'O like experience from last visit several years ago. Who the heck cares - in the end, it's a great burger! Just wanted to warn you about the bacon issue...

                    I've heard, yet not tried, Clover Grill's burgers - so you might check that out. Still, you can't beat Port of Call - the great music, lively bar, and really great burgers! Good luck and let us hear if you make any great new finds! :) Cheers

                    1. re: agulledge

                      I agree with kpangaro... I used to love Port of Call, but the last couple of times I went there, the burgers were overdone and barely warm. I'd try other places like GB's on Carrolton before I go back to POC. I do love the potato's though. The Neptune's are amazing too.

                      1. re: Kingrover

                        How is Coops place not on this list?
                        The Blue Tomato on Old Jeff in Harrahan
                        Joey K's

                        1. re: batt730

                          I second Coop's, also Liuzza's By the Track serves a pretty good one- hardly the best thing on their menu though.

                          But my real recommendation on this matter is a place called the Beachcorner, right by the cemeteries on Canal St. The atmosphere is incredibly cheesy, but the burger is just as good as Port of Call, there's never a wait, and it's quite a bit cheaper.

                          1. re: Chris Martel

                            I'll second Liuzza's by the Track. Great burger but, yes, hard to order it given the rest of the menu. I'll also second Blue Tomato and add Bywater Barbecue--horrible barbecue, great burger. Served on a bun that has the consistency of a dense, chewy French Bread, but shaped like a hamburger bun. The caveat is I haven't been since the storm.

                            1. re: Chris Martel

                              I agree with the Beachcorner recommendation. I like them better than Port of Call. I also like Lakeview Harbor and Oscar's on Metairie Rd.

                            2. re: batt730

                              Blue Tomato BEST in Jefferson area by far, been going there ever since it opened, luckily I live about .5 miles from it :) they are good people and NEVER dissappoint!

                              Metairie- I'm surprised no one said Swamp Room--- not to mention their sweet potato fries, mmmmm

                              New Orleans--Port of Call hands down the BEST burgers in town!! Can't go without having a yummy monsoon either, after one you will be feeling really nice....

                              Blue Tomato
                              4401 Jefferson Hwy, New Orleans, LA 70121

                              Swamp Room
                              5216 Veterans Memorial Blvd, Metairie, LA 70006

                        2. re: kpangaro

                          did you mean crabby jack's for a deep fried burger? i thught it's in jefferson parish not st. bernard?

                          1. re: kevin

                            Crabby J's is in Chalmette; which happens to be the parish seat for St. Bernard's parish. Not sure what you're talking about?

                            1. re: Philly

                              my bad i thought you were talking about Crabby Jack's on Jefferson Hwy, is Crabby J's somewhere else. thanks.

                              1. re: kevin

                                I went to Crabby J's for the first time this's a neat little joint. Part doughnut shop, part seafood market, part poboy shop. I wouldn't drive across town to eat there, but if you're in Chalmette, it's worth a go.