The Best Burger in NYC | Part 1

Since we moved to New York City we felt we were on a mission – finding the super-duper best burger in town. We know it is hard in a city like this, where there are so many options around, but we wanted to give it a shot and be able after the first 6-7 months to come up with a pretty comprehensive list of what we think are the best burgers in the city.

The search is not done yet and will go on for the next 3-4 months, but in the meanwhile we wanted to give you a first update on where we are so far.

We have rated the burgers based on 4 different dimensions:

  • Bun
  • Patty
  • Other ingredients (Cheese, Bacon, etc.)
  • Overall

Below are the first three burgers in the contest. May the best burger win!

Bar Sardine

Bar Sardine is a cozy spot in West Village. Very nice for a night out with your better half, or with a friend or for a “solo” night just with your burger. We tried their Fedora Burger, which is the only available burger on their menu. This is not a “traditional” burger, but rather a burger with a twist, so if you are a purist, maybe this is not the one for you… But… It is amazing! The bun is a potato roll which gets grilled and flattened, which makes your burger more manageable. Inside, a chuck and brisket patty is covered with smoked cheddar and tasty BBQ mayo – then a layer of cucumber, red onions and potato strings completes the masterpiece. The potato strings give that crunchy feeling at every bite which makes this burger special, and the overall taste is very satisfying! For some this is the best burger in NYC right now and, while we will rank all of them at the end, we can already say we feel like this will rank very high in our special list…

Bun: 8 – very good – the flattened bun makes it easy to eat your burger. Maybe not as buttery as others bun we have had somewhere else

Patty: 9 – juicy and tasty, very good!

Other ingredients: 9 – we liked them a lot but, as we said, maybe you will not like those if you are a purist

Overall: 9

Fedora Burger @ Bar Sardine

 

JG Melon

This is part of what I would call the “traditional” burger places in NYC, the ones that have been serving great burgers in NYC for the last few decades. They serve what I would call a traditional burger, with no frills, the way a “purist” would like to eat it. We went to their restaurant in the Upper West Side. It comes with a white traditional bun, well grilled, and the patty is tasty, seared with a dark crust, although not as juicy as I was expecting – maybe it was also because it did not come exactly medium-rare as I usually eat it. Cheese and bacon were the right complement to this burger – the cheese is a traditional well melted slice of American cheese. The bacon instead is served on a peculiar way: it is a mountain of curly well-cooked bacon, rather than the usual strips we are used to. It is broiled rather than cooked on the griddle which makes it very crunchy and tasty, definitely a “plus” for bacon cheeseburger fans out there. Overall a good burger. Fries are not the usual French fries – they are called “cottage fries” and are basically cut with the same shape as your pickles.

Bun: 7.5 – Good traditional white bun, well grilled

Patty: 7 – Not as juicy as other burgers, but the meat is actually very good. Also, mine was a little over-cooked.

Other ingredients: 7 – Bacon is very good and super crunchy! Cheese is ok, fries are good but I prefer traditional French fries

Overall: 7

 

Upland

This is apparently the place where Obama ate a burger while in NYC, so we thought should be worth a visit! The place itself is just amazing, we loved it. There is a large bar at the entrance with a very comfortable counter where you can dine if you do not find a table. It is a very stylish place! Keep in mind they serve burgers only for lunch or brunch, so if you want to try it do not go there for dinner.

The burger comes with a sesame seed bun and a double patty burger. I usually prefer single patty burger, which remains juicier and it is easier to get to a perfect medium-rare cooking, but I have to say this stack of double patty was cooked almost perfectly (still slightly overcooked) and still very juicy. The patty comes from grass fed beef, and it is a perfect mix of chuck and brisket, perfectly assembled by the master Pat LaFrieda. It is very savory and tasty and, despite being grass-fed, with the right level of fat. The burger is then completed with lettuce, curls of cilantro, tomatoes, Peppadew peppers and avocado, which melts in your mouth together with the patty and the decadent melted double American cheese at every bite. One additional positive note to add: the French fries are to die for, crunchy outside and soft inside – the way we love them!

Bun: 8.5 – Very good bun with sesame seeds

Patty: 9 – This is phenomenal. If it was a single patty burger we would have gone for a 9.5, but this is just a personal preference.

Other ingredients: 8.5 – Very well balanced and top quality!

Overall: 8.5

These are the first three burgers we wanted to share with you. Keep following us – in the next few weeks we will review:

  • The Nomad Bar
  • Union Square Café’
  • J. Clarke
  • Westville (Brooklyn)
  • Emily West Village

and many more…

 

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