The Company Burger (address and info)
The burger: The Single
I love this burger so much that, when I still lived in New Orleans, I looked at apartments based on their proximity to Company Burger, and, every time I’ve gone back to visit, it’s the first place I ask friends to meet me. It’s that good: a perfectly balanced and flavored, tender patty with American, red onions, and bread & butter pickles. How many mayos you want from the mayonnaise bar is TOTALLY up to you. But you should probably definitely get both onion rings and fries to try them all.
Harmon's Lunch (address and info)
The burger: Cheeseburger, loaded
In the Pine Tree State, it came down to a question of old versus new. I like the cheeseburger seared on the flat top at Nosh in Portland a whole lot. But my heart and nostalgia of summers spent traveling up through Maine with my grandparents just to eat those delicious loaded burgers at Harmon’s made it the pick for the state. Though they now serve fries and shakes, they still abstain from nonsense like lettuce and tomato, and you should always get two cheeseburgers, loaded with mustard, red relish, and fried onions. Plus, how can you not love a place with a sign that reads “This is not Burger King. You don’t get it your way. You take it my way, or you don’t get the damn thing”?
Hamilton Tavern (address and info)
The burger: The Crosstown
The Baltimore spot lives up to the tavern name: dark, cozy, neighborhood vibe, solid beers, and the exact perfect burger that we like to eat in a place that basically demands you settle in for a long night of drinking. The Crosstown’s patty has local beef covered with hot horseradish-cheddar, onion, and shredded iceberg to cool things off. There’s also sticky-spicy bacon as an optional add-on, and you should always, always add that on.
White Hut (address and info)
The burger: Cheeseburger with grilled onions
First of all, I love me the burgers at JM Curley, The Gallows, Eastern Standard, Craigie on Main, and several others in my hometown. I have written about almost all of them before, and said very nice things. But the White Hut is not just my favorite burger place of all time, it might just be my FAVORITE SINGLE PLACE IN THE WORLD. Two cheeseburgers with fried onions at the counter, at the original in West Springfield. I’ve been eating that meal since before I had teeth. And so, I’m sorry to all the others, but it was always going to be the Hut here.
Krazy Jim's Blimpy Burger (address and info)
The burger: Triple with lots of things
Michigan does not lack for quality burgers, but "Blimpy's," as it's commonly abbreviated, is an icon, serving stacks of hand-ground patties since 1953. Tragedy nearly struck when University of Michigan acquired its building for graduate housing, but a fundraising campaign kept it alive and well in a new location, along with its 2,147,483,648 ordering combinations. Get a triple (at least), know that onion rings are a must, and mind the ordering etiquette.