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Hamburger- Asheville

I searched Boards and could not find any topics on the best hamburger in Asheville
Any rec's on where to find the best in a restaurant?

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  1. Stone Ridge Tavern on Brevard Rd. Normally I wouldn't recommend this restaurant for ANYTHING else but I have to admit; they have great burgers. One of the few places you can get them cooked medium rare as well.
    Universal Joint in West Asheville has decent burgers, but nothing extraordinary.
    I am looking forward to seeing where other folks have had good burgers in Asheville. I have been in this area most of my life and still have not found a truly exceptional burger, but it must be out there somewhere.

    1 Reply
    1. re: jbaucom

      Sunny Point and Stoney Knobb. Old school burger Tastee Diner.

    2. I really like the "Meister" at Burgermeisters best in Asheville. Their homemade mayo and the potato wedges (with sweet potatoes) are really good.

      I see they now have "wild burgers", elk, venison and bison. Sounds worth a try!


      I haven't been as happy with their other burger offerings.

      The now closed Depot, in Biltmore Village used to have a very good burger...

      1. Table has an excellent burger, so does 131 Main.

        1. "Plain Jane" burger with all the fixin's at Burgermeister's is my favorite. (Great fried pickles there, too.)

          1. I guess I am in the minority here. I have dined at Burgermeisters off and on since their inception (mainly due to it being a popular meeting spot) and I just don't get it. $9.00 for a well done burger (no choice in that matter) that is 70% bun? Sure they have marinated onions and tomatoes, but they need them because the patties are well done. I simply do not understand the attraction, but it seems to work for others.
            Maybe I'm still upset by the fact that the last time I ate there, I ordered the fish and chips. It was $9.00 for ONE piece of fish on top of soggy fries + $2.00 for a coke. Almost $14 after tax and tip!!! Sorry for the rant. I really love the feel of the Burgermeisters and I WANT to love their food. I will note that the El Diablo wings there are quite good!

            Jeff C. If you are fan of fried pickles and you find yourself in Charlotte, try The Penguin in Plaza Midwood. Best fried pickles I have ever had!

            I am looking forward to trying the burgers at Sunny Point and Stoney Knob! Oh and Table!! I never thought to try a burger there!

            1. I have not heard anything about 131 Main .

              1 Reply
              1. re: mustardgirl

                Have been to 131 Main once, for lunch. Standard business lunch fare (soups, salads, sandwiches, etc.). Not bad, but nothing special. (Will have to try for dinner sometime, though.)

              2. The Village Wayside in Biltmore Village has a great burger. They will cook it at any temp you want. They also do hand cut french fries, which are awesome.

                1 Reply
                1. re: wsp1013

                  The Village Wayside is a great improvement over the preceding restaurant at that location, which seemed to have just given up. The Wayside has present, attentive management. I live just up the hill off of Fairview and after having had lunch and a light dinner there, am glad to be able to support a convenient, local place. Good selection of local beers there, too btw.

                2. Five Guys on Hendersonville Road makes a great hamburger, everything is fresh and made to order. The french fries are excellent too! Highly recommended.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Marilynne Herbert

                    I assume you can not get a beer with the buger at 5 Guys

                  2. I agree that Burgermiester is yuck. They use a certian spice that makes all their food taste the exact same. My taste buds dont get excited at all, I ate there once, my dining companion had a similar feelings.

                    Five Guys is good and well priced but I like a beer with my burger.

                    Finally, I love Wayside. Ive had some really good, super cheap food there. The fish sandwhich, fish and chips, onion rings have been stellar for the price. Yummy!

                    Not had the burger at Sunny Point. Though I die for everything else there so Im sure its amazing.

                    7 Replies
                    1. re: caiogirl

                      Scully's downtown has a really good burger and you can have a beer with it.

                      1. re: caiogirl

                        I think the key to enjoying Burgermeister's lies in substituting Sourdough bread for the thick bun, and (sorry BM) selecting a moist topping to make up for the lack of juice in the well-done patty. For this very reason, I consistently chose "The Bo"--with its wettish feta and all the fixins'; or "The Macho"--topped with guac, salsa, jalapenos and sour cream--during my years'-long tenure as a Burgermeister's advocate.

                        Once I learned to craft my own succulent burger, though, I became an advocate of cast-iron skillets.

                        With said skillet in hand: brown one side of your patty on medium-highish heat, then flip it, turn the burner low (off if it's an electric) and cover the burger.
                        This will allow the meat to cook through without needing the spiteful smashing that leaves so many diner burgers burnt and near-inedible.

                        697 Haywood Rd, Asheville, NC 28806

                        1. re: orvisedenbach

                          Excellent burger cooking advice. And, you're right, for the homecook a well-seasoned cast iron skillet is the closet approximation of a well-seasoned flat-top griddle. I would only add that it helps to use a good ground sirloin or brisket (or both) and to not overwork the meat. One would think that a tightly packed patty would allow less moisture to esape, but for some reason it seems to have the opposite effect. And don't forget to work some coarse sea salt and fresh ground pepper into the mix before forming said patties!

                          1. re: Jeff C.

                            You should try James Beard's version of the classic hamburger. Hands down, it's the best I've ever had or made.


                            1. re: Leepa

                              Interesting...I've seen recipes with onion (and onion soup mix) but never heavy cream. I'm assuming that makes it juicy?

                              1. re: Jeff C.

                                It does make them more tender and moist. They also have a nice surface crust.

                                You can also use a bit of sour cream if you don't have heavy cream. Refrigerating the formed burgers for a bit before cooking helps keep them from falling apart. They tend to do that if you cook right after forming.

                      2. I know i've asked this before, but i'd like an updated answer: Where (if anywhere) in town can you get a rare burger?

                        17 Replies
                        1. re: danna

                          Nowhere, that I've found. After the Jack in the Box e coli scare in 1993, several states (including NC) clamped down on "undercooked" ground beef in restaurants. I understand that that ban has since been lifted in many states, but I'm not sure about ours. Anyone?

                          1. re: Jeff C.

                            SC has the same law, but if the restaurant grinds the beef fresh on the premises, they are allowed to cook it rare. I assumed NC was the same way. anybody know?

                            I see no point in eating hamburger if it's cooked beyond rare.

                            1. re: danna

                              I believe that is the same law in NC. If they grind their own, they can do rare. I would like to know where a good rare one is too (other than our own deck!).

                              funny story... when I lived in RI, I once asked a pub to cook my burger "as rare as you are allowed" figuring I'd get something in the ballpark of medium due to laws....what I got was something that, perhaps, passed through the same room as the grill on the way to my table. lol they took my request quite literally! and actually, that was fine with me. Trying not to think about the possible questionable lineage of the meat (I'm pretty certain they didn't grind their own), I enjoyed my nearly raw burger.

                              1. re: Scirocco

                                yes, I suspect there have been a few times when the kitchen set out to teach me a lesson about ordering my burger "just as rare as they can cook it"...but the joke's on them...as long as the meat is fresh, i'll happily eat it raw (although a little sear on the top and bottom would be nice)

                                If you're ever in Greenville, the Blockhouse will give you a good, rare hamburger if you're real clear about asking for it. not much else going for the place, unfortunately.

                                1. re: Scirocco

                                  Not the same law in NC.

                                  The rule reads, "Ground beef and foods containing ground beef shall be cooked to an internal temperature of at least 155 degrees F (68 degrees C)," and does not go on to mention any exemptions for special types of ground beef.

                                  1. re: ECUdancr

                                    As I understand current NC law, if the meat is ground on premises, it may be legally served medium-rare. (Storm, Table, and a few other local establishments will do this.)

                                    1. re: Jeff C.

                                      NC rules governing the sanitation of food service establishments does not allow this at this time. Upon the adoption of the Food Code (presumably 2012) there will be a povision for under cooked ground beef providing the establishment posts a consumer advisory stating eating undercooked product can be hazardous to the consumers health. This type of advisory is currently only implemented for consumption of raw or undercooked shellfish in NC.

                                      1. re: ECUdancr

                                        That being said...any restaurant serving ground beef that has been cooked to a temp less than 155F does so illegally. Grinding it themselves makes no difference.

                            2. re: danna

                              u joint asks how you want it cooked (& i'm generally served the medium i request). no idea if they'll do rare.

                              1. re: mark

                                Good to know. So, how is it?

                                And, for the record, the last burger I had at B-miesters tasted like cardboard. Sign of decline or off night?

                              2. re: danna

                                The Village Wayside will cook it any temp that you like. I prefer mine cooked med rare.

                                1. re: wsp1013

                                  I'm at a loss as to what or where that is. Can you give me 411? thanks.

                                  1. re: danna

                                    It's in Biltmore Village, where the Depot used to be.

                                2. re: danna

                                  answering my own question, we stopped by Tingle's cafe today. We had already eaten, but we spoke w/ a server there and he said they grind their own burger and will do rare!! Can't wait to try it. Unfortunately, no outdoor tables and the next time I expect to be in town I'll have to dog along. So I'm hoping one of you will go check it out for me in the meantime. We DID have some of their sodas...made w/ amazing detail like a (good ) cocktail...I recommend the fauxhito!

                                  1. re: danna

                                    Tingles makes a tasty burger though a bit overpriced for the small portion.

                                  2. re: danna

                                    Cedric's at the Biltmore Estate will cook their burgers rare. Fresh, local beef - very tasty.

                                    Biltmore Estate
                                    1 Approach Rd, Asheville, NC 28803

                                    1. re: danna

                                      Just found out last night that Pack's Tavern in AVL will cook burgers any way you want too.

                                      My husband said his burger was very good (I forgot to try a bite), but that was after a substantial amount of beer and some hot wings, so I can't vouch for the accuracy of his taste buds...

                                    2. Chef Mo's (where Wildflower/Amici/Forest Blue used to be on H'ville Rd) has a very unusual burger called NOLA burger that I tried for dinner last nite. If I recall correctly, it's got beef, maybe pork, spices, raisins (just a few and yes, I thought that was odd but it worked) and a touch of whiskey. Served on a focaccia type bun with lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese - cheddar or muenster and some spicy creole style sauce. It came with hot, crisp fries that were excellent. Three (out of 14) got the burger and we all loved it ~ would definitely order again. This is not a typical burger, more like a burger/meatloaf hybrid. They do have a regular burger on the menu. Cost of burger was $8. The check for two of us (excluding tip) was $28 ~ one burger, one pork sandwich, one spinach salad, two beers.

                                      Chef Mo's ~ http://www.chefinmotion.com/index.php
                                      Doesn't look like website has a current menu, but this will give you an idea

                                      1. Had an excellent burger at LAB last night. Cooked to order - medium rate - juicy with a very good bun. Will definitely order again.

                                        1. I vote for Universal Joint....although I have only eaten at about half of the previous posters below.

                                          1. The Crash in South Asheville serves a good burger. The meat is ground fresh and can be cooked to order. Wide variety of decent sides, as well.

                                            1. Tingles Cafe downtown. "tenderloin and beef short ribs ground in house daily, on a Kaiser roll. " I ordered it med-rare, and it was served as such. Delicious.

                                              1. Gosh- This is an old post but thought of a place that you should definitely try... 51 Grill in the Exxon Station on Merrimon Ave. Just N. of 240. Not fancy, few choices, but all the burgers are hand made, big juicy and delicious and you can get something for under $6.00. One time my husband got "buy 1 get one free" bacon cheeseburger and thought they were small. He could only ever finish one. Oh and they have a few beers on tap- and usually one of the good local micro brews. It's open late night too.

                                                5 Replies
                                                1. re: mstrauss13

                                                  No kidding? I have lazily never bothered to go in there, despite passing by it twice a day on my way to and from work. Is the rest of the menu as solid as the burgers?

                                                  1. re: dingey

                                                    Yes. They have a great Cuban sandwich. They used to have a terrific fried green tomato BLT with a mango salsa, but unfortunately it isn't on the menu anymore. I still fantasize about it on occasion.

                                                    Try the place sometime.

                                                  2. re: mstrauss13

                                                    I agree about 51 Grill. I live a few blocks away and always meant to go since my brother told me it was a good bet and finally after more than a year I tried it. I've been back at least 5 times since. Nice guys, good food and excellent price!

                                                    1. re: bonoix

                                                      51 Grill is great. They make a fab turkey Reuben with real turkey, not deli slices. Fried pickles are good too. They deliver for about 2 bucks, and are open super late night too.

                                                      1. re: miss piggy

                                                        I didn't realize they delivered. I wonder if they deliver to the River Arts District? Guess I should ask, huh?