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Awesome burgers: new thread

It's been a few years since rchudy's burger thread so I'm interested in latest best burgers. I recently had one that's been in my mind since, at Precinct at the Loews Hotel (the old Cuffs). It has "Dry Aged Beef, Vermont Cheddar, Nueske’s Bacon, Parmesan Truffle Fries" ($14). This pic is from their website; I didn't feel like doing the photo thing.

I'd expected to have the same craving for the burger at 49 Social, as it's reminiscent of the old Radius burger, but I've had it a couple of times now and it hasn't drawn me back.

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  1. Mine aren't big surprises: Craigie on Main and JM Curley.

    On the lower end of the spectrum, I do enjoy Charlie's Kitchen.

    3 Replies
    1. re: addiez

      I think Charlie's is preparing to close, so best head there before the grande finale.

      1. re: Bellachefa

        Charlie's in Harvard Sq, not the Sandwich shop in BBY....or did I miss something?

    2. Not on point but funny, as we speak, grinding up a combination of porterhouse, rib-eye and sirloin tips for my own burgers. I usually wait until I can by meats that are about to expire and are being sold at half price. Probably end spending about $7 per lb for these but they are worth it.

      1. JM Curley's had been my fave since I first tried it.

        1. My Tops:

          Charley's Kitchen
          JM Curley's

          Grille 23...It was just flat out terrible. The bun was too much, burger was a mess...just a feeble attempt

          1. Can anyone comment on the burger at Back Bay Social Club? I heard it is quite good and worthy of the hefty price tag. It has been on my burger bucket list (yes, I keep an actual list of burgers I want to try) for years and I am wondering if it is worth the effort and expense. Otherwise, the Back Bay Social Club looks pretty forgettable.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Gordough

              I actually just had it for my 2nd time...first didnt make me think about it again...

              this last time, you just made me think about adding it to my list of favorites. Very juicy and delicious... I think a 3rd try would break my personal deadlock

              1. I really like the burger at Bull McCabe's in Union Square. Nothing fancy, but a half pound of beefy goodness. And at $10 (++) it's a great value. Excellent fries as well.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Tonality666

                  What I don't like about Bull McCabe's is the smell. We were in sometime during the winter and it smelled heavily like gone bad frying oil. We went back a few weeks later and walked back out because the same smell was there. Maybe we'll try again once they've had time to air out, but if they are cooking in that rancid smelling oil.......

                  1. re: Madrid

                    Can't say that I've noticed a rancid smell at McCabe's, but the outdoor patio is now open so it might be a good time to try them again.

                2. I haven't made it to JM Curley yet but hope to do so soon. My husband has been on a burger kick and he absolutely loves the burger at the Ashmont Grill. It is seared over a really hot wood fire and is very juicy. We love the fries, too.

                  The brunch burger at Boston Chops is quite good, too.

                  The Ashmont is the first pic and Boston Chops the second.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: bear

                    Those look crazy-good. Haven't had either one, but I'm on it!

                  2. for those interested, here is R Chudy's BostonBurgerBlog, with reviews given numbered rankings.


                    Overall Score: 90 and up:
                    As close to burger perfection as you’re going to get. The best of the best.
                    JM Curley
                    The Gallows
                    Market (CLOSED
                    51 Lincoln
                    Craigie On Main
                    Eastern Standard

                    gordough, BBSC is in the next ratings category down (as is the Strip T's burger, which i really like.)

                    1. I was recently taken to lunch at Harvest. We all ordered a burger. Mine was plain. Everyone else had a variety of toppings. We all made different doneness requests and each request was fulfilled. The burger was delicious. The bun was not quite up to the task however, and I ate the second half of the burger with a fork. Everyone else was able to manage their buns. Turns out I am bun challenged. This is one expensive burger. Probably more than I would spend, but a treat for a business lunch.

                      1. DC had a very nice burger at Alden & Harlow the other night, you can read all about it here:


                        6 Replies
                        1. re: Ruprecht

                          I'll put a vote in for Alden & Harlow as well. I've had the burger a few times now, and it really stands out - smokey & juicy meat, crunchy cheese, killer bun. Perfectly balanced. Just make sure to get there early, they run out pretty quickly, especially on weekends.

                          1. re: calvnhobs6

                            FINally made it to A&H for their burger tonight. Quiet Mem Day Sat. We chose not to get the day's "Secret BUrger"- topped with Fried Clams and Tartar Sauce. Our 'regular' burgers had Parker House rolls and were topped with their special sauce- "russian/caesar mix", onions, shredded lettuce, house pickles,cheddar cheese tuile. The only negatives were that the tuile wasn't crisp, the pickles were too sweet, and the house potato chips were too browned - and kind of worthless really.

                            But we were both struck by how beautiful the meat was. As much as meat flavor is important (and next time i'm getting the sauce on the side, so i can concentrate on that flavor), mouthfeel/texture is as well. Loose, soft and creamy- how often have you had a burger that you could say that about?! And that bun was so much better than brioche.

                            What a terrific accomplishment- to make such a special and unusual burger. Great experience!

                          2. re: Ruprecht

                            Tried the A&H secret burger for our 5th dinner there - still love everything about the place - and the burger is no exception - there is a kind of unusual secret ingredient in the meat that my wife nailed precisely upon tasting it, but we were sworn "not to post it on the internet" when the charming hostess confirmed our suspicions - and we'll keep mum...unless they fail to insulate the sound leaking into the Brattle films...great burger, but why the drama??

                            1. re: rlh

                              hey, what if someone is allergic to the secret ingredient??

                              how is the sound issue going these days?

                              1. re: Madrid

                                That could be a good way to find out at least what type of ingredient it is - though since NO ingredients are listed on the menu, they might just ask what it is you are allergic to and then say yes or no to serving you the burger based on your answer...and I haven't been to Brattle recently enough to answer that accurately - it was lively but not at all too loud for a conversation at a table right next to the kitchen on a Thursday night (fun vantage point, including Chef at the pass throughout dinner - very well-oiled operation there!)

                                1. re: rlh

                                  good point about the allergy issue and I hope the Brattle is doing well without the noise issue! You are correct, nothing listed on the menu includes all the ingredients even if it's not a secret one. I was just feeling a bit contrarian.....I'd bet it's something unami

                                  thanks for the update on the noise....

                          3. I had a really nice burger at Strip T's last night --- grass fed local beef with miso, onion, and a fried egg on top on a delicious bun and terrific fries.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: lipoff

                              My favorite is definitely Strip T's as well. I love the miso umami component.

                              I must be the only one who said "meh" in reaction to JM Curley's. Maybe I read too much hype beforehand.

                              1. re: Bugsey34

                                Re: JM Curley's, I like the overall juiciness and ratios of the components, but I'm not a fan of bread-and-butter pickles on a burger. Makes it too sweet for me.

                              2. re: lipoff

                                They still have SMOKED miso and Lemon aioli, right, sam? and house pickled onions?

                                1. re: opinionatedchef

                                  I'm not sure if the miso is smoked, but the aioli is lemony and the onions are house pickled. The burger is very umami.

                              3. I was surprised that Devra First in her review of The Merchant today highlighted their burger as "a beaut," because I really didn't like it. The meat is good, but it's topped with way too much aioli. Combined with bacon, aged cheddar, and a brioche bun (ugh), it just ended up feeling too fatty/greasy. (I'm obviously not looking for the health platter when I order a burger, but this one was just too much for my taste.)

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: huuvola

                                  I've had the Merchant burger a few times now and I learned after the first time to ask for the aioli on the side. I was disappointed to read in her review that they are still undercooking their fries. That was my experience as well which is entirely unacceptable given that I experienced that over a month ago. But their beer list is top notch for the immediate area.

                                2. I enjoy the lamb and sirloin burger at Firebrand Saints - frisee, spicy pickles, aioli.

                                  1. JM Curley, which also has a pretty great burger on their specials board right now (bacon laced patty, bacon cheddar biscuit bun, slaw).

                                    Alden and Harlow: always loved the meat, frico, and bit of funk in this burger, and think they've nailed their bun now so meshes well with the filling.

                                    and for burger fans who don't already know, Richard Chudy and Sam Monsour have been promoting their upcoming cookbook with once a month pop ups called 'super burger bros.' The first one, at boston chops, was a lot of fun if chaotic.

                                    Last night's, at Tavern Road, was a total blast, and the monsour/chudy creation of the month, a breakfast burger with sous vide egg yolks, porchetta, rosemary butter, on a stone and skillet english muffin (new high end english muffin company?) was pretty fricken awesome. seconds, and thirds, were ordered. So i'd definitely recommend burger enthusiasts look to see where/when the next one is.

                                    6 Replies
                                    1. re: valcfield

                                      Second the suggestion to try the burger bros pop ups. I liked the first one a little better because they also had boozy milkshakes, but the burgers were really good both nights.


                                      1. re: valcfield

                                        great report as usual valc! what fun at the pop ups! thx much.

                                        1. re: valcfield

                                          valc, that brkfst burger sounds great as it is, but did they put all that on top of a beef patty?

                                          1. re: opinionatedchef

                                            Yes that was on a beef burger. There were three burgers that night. The Tavern Road kitchen made a lamb burger with smoked feta. My favorite though was the bartender burger which had duck bacon and spicy tomato jam. The jam was actually sweet and gave it that nice savory-sweet blend. Absolutely incredible burger.

                                            They haven't worked out the details for the June one just yet, but it looks like it will be at Commonwealth and probably on a Sunday instead of Tuesday this time.


                                            1. re: hungrytommy

                                              hmmmmmm! that means you could also get their $1 oyster deal !!(all day sundays or maybe it ends at 7....)

                                          2. re: valcfield

                                            FYI- Next Super Burger Bros. pop up is Tues. June 17, 9pm at Commonwealth. Menu 'coming soon' per Mr. Monsour.


                                          3. The burger at The Haven in Jamaica Plain is outstanding- chunks of bacon, carmelized onion, tomato, arugula, "house pickle sauce" and cheese- juicy and delicious served with nice steak fries and homemade ketchup. Need a stack of napkins to handle it, but really delicious!

                                            6 Replies
                                            1. re: erfer007

                                              I really like the Haven - and not because I am Scottish!!! I don't think it gets nearly as much love on here as it should. I haven't tried their burger but their steak pie is great!

                                              1. re: alisonk

                                                It's a bit removed for most here - I almost never go to JP for food and it's not easily accessible for many. I found street parking but I got lucky - I imagine parking here is annoying on a busy night and it's not on the T.

                                                1. re: QuakerInBoston

                                                  It is not sooo far from the T - around half a mile maybe or so from Jackson Square or Stonybrook and not too far from the 39 bus stop. We walk a lot though, so maybe I am not calibrated to what is actually a far distance.

                                                  I like it it is casual, relaxed, food is good, beers are solid and it is pretty authentic!!! But I am happy for it to remain a hidden gem as long as it is doing good enough business!

                                                  1. re: alisonk

                                                    Yeah, parking is actually pretty easy (and free!) but like alisonk, I'm also happy to be able to keep walking in without a reservation so long as they're doing okay :).
                                                    IMHO, JP used to have an unearned reputation of having lots of good restaurants when we really did not. Now, with mid-range/nicer restaurants like The Haven, Tres Gatos and Ten Tables and a couple solid casual/ethnic places like Blue Nile Ethiopian, I think we've actually got some significant tastiness going on here. But again, I'm happy to be able to get into my favorite local spots without too much advanced planning...

                                              2. re: erfer007

                                                +1 on this. I tried it a few weeks ago for lunch and it was delicious - tasty and juicy. The bacon, caramelized onion, and pickle sauce put the richness a little over the top for me - I might leave off the bacon and onion next time - but overall it was great. When I had it the fries were a bit tough and not very hot, but that may have been a good thing since the burger plus a scottish cider put me into a partial food coma for the rest of the afternoon anyway - eating all the fries might have done me in!

                                                It's about a half-block from the 39 bus stop and I think a half-mile from either Stonybrook or Jackson Square T is about right, but I'm happy to have it in walking distance. Very friendly service and mellow vibe as well.

                                                1. re: erfer007

                                                  erf, is that burger griddled or cooked over a fire? thx.

                                                  1. re: meeps2002

                                                    MA is represented by Lynn Lynn the City of Sin! Who would have thought. I imagine it's not your average gin joint.

                                                  2. Nothing new to add, but add my voice to my favorites
                                                    Craigie on Main
                                                    JM Curley's
                                                    Back Bay Social Club

                                                    I once enjoyed Bartley's, but haven't been in years due to the crowds. For a guilty pleasure, the double cheeseburger special and a cold beer, eaten at the bar at Charlie's Kitchen in Harvard Square can't be beat.

                                                    1. Is the burger at JM Curley that so many of you rate so highly the one on the lunch menu or the dinner menu? Or both -- although they seem to be different. Thanks.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: GretchenS

                                                        I prefer the lunch one, because I like my burgers on the smaller size myself

                                                      2. Three of my favorites already mentioned in Craigie, Curley and Gallows. Two others I really love is the Burger available at lunch at West Bridge and the burger at Tavern Road.

                                                        I am not sure if the TR Burger was a special or not as it was listed on the chalkboard near the bar, but it was very impressive.

                                                        1. Another fun burger event:
                                                          Next Wed.,5/25, Forum restnt is going to celebrate National Burger Day (who knew?) by doing a $10 chuck, brisket and short rib -blended burger (w/ applewood smoked bacon and smoked Gouda) w/ fries and iced tea. (Oh,only from 11:30am - 5:30pm.) Sounds like fun. Has anyone eaten at Forum recently? Do they do a good job ?


                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. Surprised no mentions of the burger at Catalyst. One of my favorites for sure. Love the roasted tomato and house ketchup is fantastic. Bonus points for terrific fries.

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: mkfisher

                                                              <*Catalyst Burger, Cheddar, Bacon, Caramelized Onions, Roasted Tomato 15

                                                              Brioche Bun, House Made Ketchup, Mustard & Aioli, Fries >

                                                            2. I had a really good burger at the new Audubon the other night. The meat was really flavorful and juicy and it was cooked perfectly to order.

                                                              The roasted potatoes on the side were good, but I'd rather have fries.

                                                              1. A report by proxy on a burger that I've yet to read about on CH...Vito's Tavern on Salem in the North End. My family and I stopped in on Saturday before checking out the Greenway Open Market. We picked Vito's because it was empty at lunch time. B reports that his jalapeño burger was fantastic. Cooked perfectly to his taste (medium-well but still light-pink inside...he's scared of E. coli from badly-handled ground beef), moist and juicy meat, plentiful toppings with some kick, and a grilled bun. B usually gets ~1 burger a week when we're out but I don't remember the last time he's raved about one as he did on Saturday. The other 4 family members also got burgers and loved theirs as well. Fries were excellent - of the McDonald's variety - thin and crisp. We were all pleasantly surprised by our lunch (portabella burger was fine...nothing good or bad to report).

                                                                1. What do you think about awesome low-brow burgers? Where are those places? Greasy, flat grilled, dripping with cheese and onions type of places?

                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                  1. re: sekelmaan

                                                                    For my fix of those I like:

                                                                    Casey's Diner in Natick
                                                                    Flat Patties in Harvard Square
                                                                    Sullivan's at Castle Island
                                                                    I may be in the minority but I also like Uburger for a greasy flat grilled burger with lots of cheese and onions (I get the Grand Slam Burger hold the mushrooms)

                                                                    1. re: Gordough

                                                                      In my book Casey's takes first place in this category. An incredibly well done simple burger. I highly recommend getting it with grilled onions.

                                                                    2. re: sekelmaan

                                                                      Oh, you mean proper hamburgers? Uburger and Flat Patties get the job done for me, plus I have a nostalgic fondness for Charlie's Kitchen.

                                                                      I was excited about Tasty Burger opening a Harvard Square location, but the product there just isn't as good as the original in the Fenway and so I've pretty much stopped going there. Also, I resisted going there for the longest time because they've been so overhyped ever since the first one opened, but a Shake Shack double cheeseburger with everything and mustard is a fine burger. Fries suck, though. Plus: never a line at the Harvard Square location.

                                                                      1. re: sekelmaan

                                                                        If you're ever in RI - Stanley's in Central Falls/Pawtucket still does THE BEST

                                                                        1. re: sekelmaan

                                                                          Great suggestions, thanks! I am going to try Caseys tomorrow!

                                                                        2. My favorites:
                                                                          The Haven
                                                                          JM Curley
                                                                          49 Social

                                                                          I miss the burger at Radius.

                                                                          1. I do think he Alden and Harlow secret burger is spectacular, and I just confirmed that the Roni Burger at Miracle of Science remains a top personal favorite for me.

                                                                            1. Sadly, I did not make it to Casey's diner last week. I will try again this coming weekend.

                                                                              Happily, I made it to JM Curley's for lunch today. The burger was outstanding. A burger so good, that I actually ordered a second one and finished it. Yes. Really.

                                                                              (Make sure to get the spicy coleslaw and put it on the burger, pass on the fries.)

                                                                              1. Saturday, I tried both new burgers on the Aquitaine menu:

                                                                                Reuben Burger: With pastrami, aged gruyère, special sauce and pickled onion rings

                                                                                Truffled Bacon Burger: Aged cheddar, truffle mayo and pommes frites

                                                                                overall both we simply amazing...but the edge goes to the Pastrami burger. that burger was unreal and I could have had a second one.

                                                                                Though the price seemed to jump up a bit, 16-$17 now for each burger...but hell, who in Boston does a burger of that quality for much less.

                                                                                Do yourself a favor and try these.

                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                1. re: meeps2002

                                                                                  truffle burger sounds terrify, though I'd rather they use Italian truffle cheese over the cheddar. If their steak frites(w/ truffle vinaigrette) is the shoe-leather tough piece of meat I got and should have sent back last time (always dependably delic for years before that) I will now get the burger. thx much!

                                                                                2. Just finally had the Drink burger. A simple double burger, but really really good. Two patties, super juicy, and cheese lettuce and tomato as I like it. Flavorful beef perfectly cooked (even though flat patties, not well done). Did I mention juicy?

                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: Alcachofa

                                                                                    Bumping this thread just to reiterate how good the burger is at Drink. Total amateur move on my part having them cut it in half. This should be eaten whole.

                                                                                    Has anyone had the Blue Dragon burger?

                                                                                    1. re: mkfisher


                                                                                      mk, i could not find a burger on their on line menu. maybe it's always available but not mentioned on the menu?

                                                                                      1. re: opinionatedchef

                                                                                        It's an off menu special. They serve 15 or so each day

                                                                                    2. I can no longer identify a 'best of' in this category. There simply are too many fantastic choices today. For example, the Art Bar Burger.

                                                                                      1. I have recently tried Craigie's and JMC's burgers and both were amazing.

                                                                                        Tonight I went to The Gallows to try the Our Way. What a disappointment. The burger was bland bland bland. The patty had no seasoning. The meat was medium rare but it was sinewy. None of the condiments, the iceberg, or pickles or bread gave it any complexity or depth of flavor or even any flavor. It was a huge disappointment and also kind of embarrassing as I was bragging about how good the place was supposed to be. (We did not like the poutine or the disgusting dessert either, but I'll discuss that elsewhere.)