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Jul 15, 2005 02:59 PM

Green chile cheeseburgers

  • p

For me, the definitive GCC will always be those cooked up by Lester & Emily at the (late lamented) Break-21 Cafe in Pie Town, NM...

Ah, memory. My current fave is served up at Harry's Roadhouse in Santa Fe. BIG slab of ground round, cooked rare if you want it, good bun, choice of cheese, lotsa fries & fixins. Harry's isn't totally consistent, but when it's right, and washed down with a cold beer, it's heavenly. Only problem is, the burger's so big, I never have room for a piece of Harry's wonderful pies.

The other local fave is at the Bobcat Bite, nearby on Old Las Vegas Hwy, at the Bobcat Crossing overpass. This has never done much for me -- a bit too plain & unadorned, and NO BEER.

There was recent discussion here re the GCC's at the Owl Bar in San Antonio, S. of Socorro. I've always found them just OK, but service is fast, the beer is cold, the bar is atmospheric, and alternatives are few....

Happy eating--
Pete Tillman

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  1. Without a doubt, the best green chile cheeseburger is at the Blue Heron Restaurant in La Cienega, outside Santa Fe. A big slab of organically raised beef cooked as you like it, homemade bun, fresh roasted chile, terrific house made steak fries, and all for twelve dollars. Got to split it with a friend, and you wind up with a fabulous burger for six bucks. Eat by the pond, too.

    5 Replies
    1. re: pattycakes

      "all for twelve dollars". Hmmm, I think you need to reassess your definition of value. Any restaurant charging more that $8 for a burger is taking themselves way too seriously.

      1. re: jtc

        oh, c'mon folks....there are certainly lots of places that serve burgers costing more than $8. the majority of high end restaurants serve them in the $10-$15 price range. you can't expect a nice restaurant with high rent to serve a burger for less than $8. consider all of the other costs to serve a, advertising, staff, ambiance costs, location, the list goes on. the blue heron is a nice place and can surely justify charging $12 for their burger, especially if it's large enough to split.

        1. re: jeffinsantafe

          Thanks for lending some reality to this discussion. There are normally very legitimate reasons for a place having to charge $12 for a burger...Like you said.

          1. re: Chuck
            alice (let's eat!)

            You guys are right. Just because it's the Southwest (aka the sticks, to some) does not mean the food and overhead costs are less - in fact, sometimes they're more. And when the heck was the last time anyone had a sandwich at ANYplace that wasn't a fast food outlet or clone that came in at under six bucks? And that, we'll all note, is on the cheap side. Big burger, couple of toppings, and a side or so...not a possibility under $9. (I take it back...I've seen it for about $7. Not within any good reach of what one calls civilization, though.)

        2. re: jtc

          too seriously...or is located in a very desirable place to live where rents are high and so is average income.

      2. A magnificent green chile cheeseburger can be had at the Gin Mill. Hot chile, great curly fries, and cheap, especially for how gigantic it is. Also...great bar with plenty of cold beer!

        3 Replies
        1. re: gina
          alice (let's eat!)

          Gin mill??? WHICH gin mill???? (of all the gin joints in the world...which is the one with the green chili cheeseburgers???)

          1. re: alice (let's eat!)

            The Gin Mill Tavern, Far North Shopping Center, Albuquerque, NM. On San Mateo near I-25.

            If you live in ABQ, enjoy--lucky you!

          2. re: gina

            I live in Albuquerque.

            Sad to say, the Gin Mill closed recently. Instead, try Monroe's on Osuna not far from the Gin Mill, or even Sadie's in the north valley at 4th Street and Solar.

          3. Well Peter, we certainly disagree on the Bob Cat...It did everything for me. The pure simplicity of the finest meat one could ever expect and cooked to perfection. Just the right amount of heat in those green chilis...Best burger I've ever had.

            No, I only had Harry's Pie on the way back from Bob Cat. And yes, they obviously have a tremendous following. The pie was ok...I've had much better. Can't speak for the green chili cheeseburger though. But, you have. Sorry, I didn't get a chance to try their's as well.

            1. Recently had a great green chile cheeseburger at Merlino's Belvedere in Canon City, Colorado. Called the "Double White," it's two medium-sized patties on a homemade bun with jack cheese and roasted green chiles. Excellent.

              1. Peter,
                I agree with all of the above. Harry's is the best and The Bite down the road is quite good too (albeit small and fryless). There are several places that live on reputation like the Owl and Burt's Burger Bow. I was amazed at how awful the GCCB was at Burts a few weeks ago. As for the Owl, I like to say that their burger is simply a chile sending dish, (only a vehicle for the chile) since the meat, cheese and bun are barely ok. but atmopheric it is.

                6 Replies
                1. re: Scottso
                  Peter D. Tillman


                  What excellent taste you have!

                  Thanks for the Berts pan. Keep halfway meaning to try it, but we haven't liked any of Olea's restaurants yet, so it was a low priority...

                  Cheers -- Pete Tillman

                  1. re: Peter D. Tillman

                    Um, there are no other Olea restaurants. This is the only resto owned by Richard Glass.

                    1. re: Wendy

                      Believe Peter Tillman IS correct... Bert's Burger Bowl on Guadalupe is owned by Fernando Olea.

                      He has owned La Taqueria on St. Michael's Drive and took over the old La Tertulia space on Agua Fria near Sanbusco Center after that owner, Willy Ortiz passed away.

                      Olea has always enthusistically promoted the foods of Mexico City rather than doing northern New Mexico food. Recently he closed the St. Michael's Drive restaurant and moved the La Taqueria restaurant into the La Tertulia space scaling back some from a short-lived effort at sophisticated Mexican dining (read top-dollar) in that space,

                      Hope all that isn't too confusing. Olea has two restaurants now in Santa Fe. Like Peter Tillman, I too, have never been wild over anything he does.

                  2. re: Scottso

                    Peter...Are you serious about the Bite's burger being "small?" How about telling us about Harry's GCCB?

                    Yes, you're right that the Bite does not offer fries. I just enjoyed the burger so much I never thought about fries. My wife had the potato salad and like it.

                    I'd really like to know about Harry's burger....Thanks

                    1. re: Chuck

                      Sorry, I meant to say smaller. The burgers at the Bite, at 6 ozs are not small just smaller than Harry's but his are thick enough to cook rare which I really appreciate. I've never been able to get one rare at the Bite and I don't like their slaw it needs more mayo. Also, IMHO, not having anything at all for dessert is strange and oppositional.

                      Harry's GCCB has shards of kick ass chile and there are several types of cheese to choose from, garnishes are generous and so is the portion size of their very good fries.

                      Then there's the pie at Harry's, Oh my, what pie. I've driven an hour one way from Albuquerque for a piece of Payton's pie.

                      1. re: Scottso
                        Peter D. Tillman

                        'Harry's GCCB has shards of kick ass chile and there are several types of cheese to choose from, garnishes are generous and so is the portion size of their very good fries.
                        Then there's the pie at Harry's, Oh my, what pie. I've driven an hour one way from Albuquerque for a piece of Payton's pie.'"

                        Just so you know, her blueberry pie is now on the menu for the season -- and it is truly, truly wonderful. Warmed, with a big dollop of vanilla ice cream, of course...

                        Did I mention that Harry's has icy-cold Santa Fe Pale Ale on tap, to wash down that GCCB?

                        Pretty much my fave S.Fe place. Doesn't hurt that it's about 10 min from the house....

                        Happy eating--
                        Pete Tillman