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Best Pub/Low rent Burger

I find the best burgers are the ones from Pubs-- perhaps it's also that I like good value for my food. I'm a simpleton and prefer my burger with quality meat (not mixed with shortribs, etc.) and seasoned just with salt and pepper.

I recall Ship of Fools on the UES having a solid burger. These days I like Hurleys, just had a good one at Blind Pig (a tad small for my tastes), wasn't crazy about Molly's and definitely disappointed at Corner Bistro (their meat quality was subpar). Can't stand JG Melon for the service. Also need to give a shout out to Reservoir for their inexpensive yummy wings (6.50 for 10 and 8.50 for 20!) and a solid burger.

What pub burger do you like? The closer to EV the better :-)

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  1. Have you tried the Ear Inn?

    1. My favourite burger in NYC wasn't at a pub, but from Burger Joint at Le Parker Meridien hotel (find it behind the red curtain to the side of the reception desk). They've also recently opened a second outlet at 33 west 8th street.

      Simple burger - meat, cheese, tomato, pickle, lettuce, mustard, ketchup, mayo. Tasty as!

      1. PJ Clarkes for me.

        Also the short rib spring rolls are pretty awesome.

        2 Replies
        1. re: lexismore

          PJ Clarkes is a good burger but found I had to order 2 to satiate my needs!

          1. re: rottyguy

            I know what you mean about the size of the burger at Clarke's. Old Town might pop up on this thread too - be warned, their burger is the same size. Good but small.

            I second the Walker's rec. below. I'll also add the Waterfront Ale House.

          1. re: foodwhisperer

            Fortunately, I work near walkers so have had them a few times and agree, it's a good burger. Will need to give Ear Inn a shot as I've heard it's quite solid as well.

            1. re: foodwhisperer

              I'll echo the Walker's and Waterfront Ale House.
              (I have had some unexplainable clunkers at Walker's though)

              I find it's often the less celebrated pubs the put out some good burgers. I've had some luck at The Watering Hole (formerly Tracey J's). Does Brinkley's or Spitzer's count as pubs?

              Meat quality on some of the more beloved pub burgers is pretty iffy, so based on the OP's take on Corner Bistro, I wouldn't think they'd be too impressed with Ear Inn, or PJ's.

              1. re: sugartoof

                Funny, I was wholly unimpressed by the meat quality/flavor Corner Bistro, Ear Inn (and Molly's for that matter), but found PJs to be great both times I had it.

                1. re: lexismore

                  The grease and outer char of the PJ's probably helps the flavor, which is enough for some people.

                  I'm strictly speaking of the original location. I think Lincoln Center is a notch better.

                  1. re: sugartoof

                    The LCPJ is a sanitized theme park, with a different menu, larger kitchen, bigger burgers, fries, and a touristy ambience. Many people will think it a huge improvement on the original.

                    1. re: knucklesandwich

                      Right, but the bigger burger vs. a more fast food, carnival burger. Different styles.

                2. re: sugartoof

                  Just had the Ear Inn Burger tonight and agree the meat quality wasn't fantastic but something kinda worked for me there.

                  1) It was a nice size burger (8oz)
                  2) No frills (tomato & onion), salted, probably peppered
                  3) Had to have been flamed grilled as it was well charred on the outside
                  4) Pretty Juicy
                  5) While I prefer a Martin's Roll, the bread wasn't overly bready and did well with the meat
                  6) The side salad was a nice touch (but I should have asked for a different dressing).
                  7) $9.50

                  Still behind Hurleys, Walkers, and Blind Pig but above Molly's and Corner Bistro.

                  Had the meat quality been a bit better (ahem, Ottomanelli's) this could have been one worth traveling for...

                  Will need to try the Watering Hole next as it's not to far from me.

                  1. re: rottyguy

                    I can see how that's exactly the appeal for those that appreciate the Ear Inn burger. It's very classic, no thrills. It does have that char taste, which is a saving grace for the meat. To me it's too generic and close to a diner burger, in a cooler room.

                    With Waterfront, you can expect something attempting to be a little more high end.

              2. I've eaten burgers at pretty much all the so called best burger locations. Form my experience Walkers stands out.

                1 Reply
                1. re: porkpa

                  Hurleys in midtown is on par with Walkers IMO.