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Hamburger- Asheville

mustardgirl Oct 11, 2009 05:00 PM

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?

  1. j
    jbaucom Oct 12, 2009 08:05 AM

    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
      marney Oct 12, 2009 10:46 AM

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

    2. meatn3 Oct 12, 2009 10:53 AM

      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. n
        NANCY Oct 13, 2009 02:30 PM

        Table has an excellent burger, so does 131 Main.

        1. Jeff C. Oct 13, 2009 03:50 PM

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

          1. j
            jbaucom Oct 13, 2009 06:43 PM

            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. m
              mustardgirl Oct 14, 2009 12:39 AM

              I have not heard anything about 131 Main .

              1 Reply
              1. re: mustardgirl
                Jeff C. Oct 14, 2009 05:57 AM

                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. w
                wsp1013 Oct 14, 2009 08:38 AM

                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
                  doodoolemonque Feb 26, 2010 06:47 AM

                  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. m
                  Marilynne Herbert Oct 15, 2009 04:46 PM

                  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
                    mustardgirl Oct 16, 2009 04:27 PM

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

                    1. re: mustardgirl
                      Marilynne Herbert Oct 19, 2009 04:58 PM

                      Correct. Soft drinks and iced tea only.

                  2. c
                    caiogirl Mar 2, 2010 05:37 PM

                    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
                      Spreadhead Mar 30, 2010 10:26 AM

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

                      1. re: caiogirl
                        orvisedenbach Jun 23, 2010 02:30 AM

                        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
                          Jeff C. Jun 23, 2010 06:11 AM

                          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.
                            Leepa Jun 23, 2010 04:34 PM

                            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
                              Jeff C. Jun 23, 2010 04:51 PM

                              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.
                                Leepa Jun 23, 2010 05:03 PM

                                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.

                                1. re: Leepa
                                  Jeff C. Jun 24, 2010 07:02 AM

                                  Will give it a shot. Thanks!

                      2. danna Jun 23, 2010 05:33 AM

                        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
                          Jeff C. Jun 23, 2010 06:16 AM

                          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.
                            danna Jun 23, 2010 09:27 AM

                            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
                              Scirocco Jun 23, 2010 09:59 AM

                              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
                                danna Jun 23, 2010 11:20 AM

                                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
                                  ECUdancr May 18, 2011 11:16 AM

                                  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
                                    Jeff C. May 18, 2011 11:21 AM

                                    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.
                                      ECUdancr May 18, 2011 11:51 AM

                                      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
                                        ECUdancr May 20, 2011 07:15 AM

                                        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
                              mark Jun 23, 2010 08:39 AM

                              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
                                Jeff C. Jun 23, 2010 08:51 AM

                                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
                                wsp1013 Jun 23, 2010 11:27 AM

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

                                1. re: wsp1013
                                  danna Jun 23, 2010 01:59 PM

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

                                  1. re: danna
                                    stephw1 Jun 23, 2010 02:40 PM

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

                                2. re: danna
                                  danna Jul 17, 2010 06:56 PM

                                  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
                                    bonoix May 2, 2011 04:53 PM

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

                                  2. re: danna
                                    Eric Panic Jul 18, 2010 06:08 PM

                                    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
                                      Scirocco Aug 21, 2010 02:10 PM

                                      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. n
                                      NANCY Jun 24, 2010 07:43 AM

                                      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. n
                                        NANCY Jul 16, 2010 03:50 PM

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

                                        1. mtnmchgrl Aug 24, 2010 10:02 PM

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

                                          1. m
                                            momoflala9901 Sep 12, 2010 02:01 PM

                                            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. s
                                              southmouth Oct 7, 2010 03:21 PM

                                              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. m
                                                mstrauss13 Feb 25, 2011 06:08 PM

                                                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
                                                  dingey May 9, 2011 01:48 PM

                                                  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
                                                    Leepa May 9, 2011 04:20 PM

                                                    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
                                                    bonoix May 9, 2011 01:57 PM

                                                    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
                                                      miss piggy May 11, 2011 12:36 PM

                                                      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
                                                        Leepa May 11, 2011 06:16 PM

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

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