From the editors and readers of Out West Newspaper, the newspaper published from an RV motorhome.
Many of these burgers were tasted by the editors of Out West has they traveled in their motorhome. To keep up with the staff's travels these days, be sure to read RVtravel.com, all about RV travel in the USA.
We no longer maintain this page. It was last updated in 2001.
Well? Alaska IS in the West! When in Anchorage, a must eat burger comes from the Arctic Road Runner. They have two locations; Arctic Blvd. (The original) and Old Seward Highway just south of International Airport Road. My personal favorite is the Kodiak -- 1/2 pound of burger, a slice of ham, cheese, japaleno peppers and just about any other fixin' you want. They have about 20 different burgers. You will find one you like. -- DAVE THOMPSON
Note from editor: I had an excellent Halibut Burger at the Arctic Road Runner. The restaurant started years ago in a travel trailer and today is a very popular fast food joint in Anchorage. The burgers I saw looked delicious.
Rodneys in Willcox, Ariz.,. IS along I-10 east of Tucson about halfway to the New Mexico border. Go downtown to historic Railroad Avenue. Rodney's is located between the old Palace Saloon and the Rex Allen theater. Rodney's is also known by the locals for great barbecue. -- BETTY HUTCHISON
Rule number one of burger eating: Never eat a burger that contains diesel! Yuch!
The best burger by far in So. Cal is at the El Dorado Bowling Alley on Manchester Blvd. and Lincoln Blvd. It's big and juicy and absolutely delicious. I like it with grilled onions and they give you plenty. I'm making myself hungry. I think I'll have one for dinner. -- MARY KRAVITSKY
Without a doubt 'In and Out Burgers' has the best fast food burgers in California. It's one of the highlights of any trip back to California. -- ROBERT MINKUS
Editor's note: The In and Out Burger bumper stickers are popular, but in an abbreviated form: some customers delete a few letters for a new message "IN AND OUT URGE."
Conway's Red Top, voted one of the "Best Burgers" in the United States by AAA. The Conway family has owned this business since the 50's serving a GIANT burger that "lives up to it's name". There are three locations in Colorado Springs -- DAN SANTISTEVAN
It's been two years snce we were there, but it's not on your list and it showed no signs of disappearing, so ... Try Papillon's "Construction Burger. Don't know what they put in it, and you can have anything on it you wish. It's huge, and it's good! And ya might even run into Bill Frie, a.k.a. C.W. McCall, who was known at least once to lean up against a 10 or more year-old Wagoneer (they don't call 'em that anymore) and jawbone with a couple fellas from Back East. JOHN A MESSEDER, JR.
Bud's Bar has THE "burger." No fries, though. Sadallia is just off I-25 at Castlerock and northwest just a few miles. Folks come from far away to this little bar for this great burger. It's served with a bag of chips or two bags if you order the double. A double and a beer costs about $6. You should try a buffalo burger some time. Some are like old leather and others are to die for. -- JOHN (no last name given).
The Dutch Oven has quite a burger; not only does it have excellent taste but you get to discuss WWII bombers and horse racing with the owner/cook. You can try to order something from the menu, but you better take the burger (served with fruit salad) that was thrown on the grill when you walked through the door. -- JACK D.
One of the best and certainly the biggest burger I have ever seen is at Bishop's Marina & Resort. This thing is the size of a 10" plate and must have a full 1 1/2 pounds of meat. It tastes so good you will kill yourself trying to eat it all. The fries are cut there and large, too. It is simply the best for a hamburger lover like me. -- JIM HENROD
Here's a good burger, not for how it tastes (it's okay, but not award-winning) but for its name: The Slurp and Burp Burger, served at the Slurp and Burp Tavern. -- THE EDITOR
Van's Burger Station is a tiny place where you order to take out (only) burgers and chili.Van's has been in existence for at least 40 years and is still going strong through several family generations. The meat is prepared a certain way and people come from everywhere to taste this American delight. I can't recommend this place enough. I've been going there for 40 years myself.and I live 1500 miles away! -- PHILO GLENN WOODDELL
Before you make a decision on the Best of the West Burger check out Nap's Grill. The big, thick, juicy burgers are hidden under a mound of grilled onions and mushrooms and served with more fries than the average bear can eat. Nap's is on N. 2nd St., second block north of Main St., one block to the west of U.S. 93. Check it out! -- WILLIAM WOLPERT
The Missoula Club has outstanding burgers. -- RIGER WERNER
In its 1999 "Best Of" issue, Nevada Magazine honored the Hard Rock Cafe inside Harvey's Casino and Hotel at South Shore Lake Tahoe as home to the best burger in northern Nevada.
You can get a great burger in the Ramada Express Hotel and Casino in its Dining Car Restaurant. It's big and juicy with lettuce, tomato, pickles, etc. -- G. C. AUSTIN
In its 1999 "Best Of" issue, Nevada Magazine named Archie's as home to the best burger in rural Nevada.
I had to add our local favorite restaurant for their burger. It is The Range Cafe and their Range Burger, ground sirloin topped with ham, cheese and green chile. They make their own buns too. This is really a great restaurant. MATT
Tray the Magdalena Burger at the Magdalena Cafe, U.S. Hwy. 60 Westbound . The burger includes green chile, cheese, bacon, and at least a half pound of beef, plus all the fixin's with a side of real homemade fries using real-live potatoes. Good price, too. The "Magdalena Burger" is so good it will make you gag yourself for settling for an "Owl Bar" burger [editor;'s note: see below]. -- JAMES AND LINDA BURSON
The Owl Burger at the Owl Tavern is New Mexico's best burger hands-down, made with juicy beef and fresh local chile. Don't miss it. Another good burger, across the street, is Manny's Bighorn. The green chile from either burger will clear your sinuses. -- THE EDITOR
Update (11-97) from reader Larry Dove: "I stopped by the Owl Tavern four months ago. They spruced the place up some..darn! The green chile was still great!! "
The green chili cheese burger at Bobcat Bite (just outside town) can't be beat -- a thick, juicy buger with chili that's just plain flavorful. The best part of a Bob Cat burger is letting the burger juices and chili drip on your plate where you can mix them in with the fresh homefries (no french fries in this joint -- or much else except steak, chops and hot, greasy chili, availble after the first good snow). -- BRANDIE ERISMAN
Jim Hawkins adds:
I want to affirm Brandie Erisman's vote for Bobcat Bite as the best place in Santa Fe for hamburgers. The cafe is locate near Glorieta, the church camp for Southern Baptists, who are some of the worlds' best eaters! Part of the summer experience at Glorieta is to do lunch at Bobcat Bite. About 15,000 people come to Glorieta Conference Center each year (one week at a time for conferences), and many of them have Bobcat Bite on their MUST list for the week. I've been visiting Glorieta every year for the past 25 years.
Truth Or Consequences
We stopped by the Owl Cafe in San Antonio N.M., based on its recommendation here, but it was closed on Sundays! Since we were staying in Truth or Consequences (just because) we decided to try our luck there at "Big-a Burger", which turned out to be a delightful little mom and pop burger joint with green chili cheesburgers and GREAT chili cheese fries, and KILLER malts and shakes. Not the biggest or the best burger I've ever had, but plenty good enough, and the total package was terrific. -- SADIE McFARLAND
Michael Bankson, who lives in Truth Or Consequences, seconded this recommendation (12-99)
Try the Meers Cafe,. These Burgers are enormous, about eight inches across. They grow their own Longhorn cattle for this low fat burger. -- CHARLES M LOGSTON
The Pilot Butte Drive-In at 9th and Greenwood (Highway 20 East) offers a 36 ounce burger, which is notable, but the place as a whole is truly notable -- lots of character and very popular with the locals. You can't beat a place with tater tots on the menu. I refer to Bend as the "City of Good Food". It's awesome restaurant per capita ratio can't be beat. -- JIM ELLISON
There are great hamburgers, cheeseburgers and REAL milkshakes at the Fields Cafe in Fields, Ore. Its about 120-miles south of Burns and 20-miles north of the Nevada line. A sign on the wall says 3300 (don't remember the actual number) burgers served since January 1, 1999, and there's another sign with a milkshake count. There's also a graph showing the numbers of each served annually since 1984 or so. It's real ice cream in the shake, which is made with a real mixer. Then the test: put the straw in about 3/4" and it stands straight up! If there are 10 people living in Fields I'd be surprised. -- B CRONIN
On Highway 99 at the flashing signal is The Burger Hut. Order its Jumbo Burger in a Basket with a milkshake. Also their bread pudding is out of this world. The Burger Hut is a dumpy looking place and you probably wouldn't go in unless someone recommended it. A lot of cops eat there. -- ED HAUSAFUS
In Pendleton, the In 'N Out Charburger is fire-grilled to perfection. Not only the best taste in the West, but you can smell them for a mile around! Don't expect to get a place to sit, though, if you go during meal time: there are only two tables and half a dozen stools at the counter. But it's worth the wait or worth eating on your own tailgate, too! -- LEE JACOBS
Calamity Jane's has the best burgers in the West. I've eaten burgers since I was a kid, and that was 40+ years ago. My favorite; the Mean Jose: salsa, j. peppers, quaq., sour cream, and I add a slice of pepper jack cheese. All burgers come in three sizes. Chocolate marshmallow burger? They have it. -- DENNIS DUFLOTH
The world's best hamburger is still at Herd's Hamburgers. It's on your way from the courthouse out the road to Wichita Falls, or Henrietta. The present owner is the son of the founders: Jess and Mary Herd. They began the little one-room hamburger stand back in the '40s, or even maybe the late '30s, and it's been in operation ever since. Thousands of satisfied customers would agree that Herd's is the BEST anywhere! -- JIM HAWKINS
You can enjoy great hamburgers at Billy Miner's. Actually, I would say that they are the best burgers in Texas. Try the 1/2 lb. Billy Burger, the Regular Burger or the Sundance Burger. These are Texas-size hamburgers with all the fixin's. Located downtown at 150 W. 3rd Street, Sundance Square -- DICK McMULLIN
Wilsons Corners,12 miles south of Odessa, has the very best burgers in Texas! They have a deli called Jabber Jaws. Try one of the burgers and it's all over. -- UNSIGNED
The Shooting Star Burger at the Shooting Star Saloon is an awesome meal -- the best burger we've found in our travels. Cook Heidi won't reveal the ingredients, but a big ol' German sausage is included along with the beef patty. Yum. By the way, the Shooting Star Saloon is home to the Stuffed Dog On The Wall. See it to believe it. -- THE EDITOR.
A reader named Phyllis added: The burger has knockwurst, hamburger, the usual complement of tomato, lettuce etc and I can't really remember what all. The snow skiers love it in the winter and the water skiers in the summer. And many people with hearty appetites can't finish a whole one at one sitting.
The best burger you will ever eat is at the Crossroads Bar & Grill. It has a western atmosphere & one of the owners Paul or Cheryl will be there to entertain you. Who needs comedians when you have these two? The burger that people drive for miles for is a half-pound of cow with ham, bacon, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, onions and some secret seasonings charbroiled to perfection. Served with fresh cut fries or one of their home made salads. After you eat one of these you will be back again. -- THE GROUCH
Best burgers in these parts are at the "Come Inn" cafe between 5th and 6th street on the Diagonal in Clarkston. -- PETE
Please add the "4-10 Drive-In" on U.S. 12 in Clarkson. The "Billy Burger" is fantastic. They also have the best curly fries I have ever had. Drive-in has been in open since 1950s and has changed very little over the years. Still has the car hops, etc.-- CAROL ROGERS
The Coulee Co-Op (gas station mini-mart) gets my vote for serving one of the best burgers in the West. Its Hawaiian burger with ham, swiss cheese and pineapple, served after a day of fishing is a feast. It is now on my list of things to do in Washington along with the fishing. -- DON CAMP
Discovery Bay is on the Olympic Peninsula on U.S. 101 at the intersection of state route 20 to Port Townsend. You can't miss Fat Smittys, a cafe with huge woodcarvings outside (in the likeness of Smitty and his wife). The three-patty Fat Smitty Burger is surely one of the ten top burgers in the West, and all for $5.50 which includes a huge pile of tasty fries. My guess is that most folks cannot finish one because it's so huge! -- THE EDITOR
Zeke's Hamburgers in Zekesville (Hwy. 2 between Gold Bar and Index) gets my nomination. These hamburgers are huge, have all the trimmings in quantity, are extra juicy, and just plain taste great. you gotta try the onion rings, too! -- Dave McHenry
John Hahn, a columnist for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, reported in a recent issue that the Coral Drive Inn serves a 16-inch Tsunami Burger. At $26.95, he wrote, "it's probably the best burger deal this side of the Columbia River." He reported that before the Tsunami Burger came along, the biggest burger in town was the $15 Family Burger at Mary Lou's Tavern. -- THE EDITOR
Jonathan and Karen Cox commented: "The Tsunami Burger is 5 pounds with all the fixings and feeds 8-10 people.You can also get one gallon of fries."
For what it's worth, the Ranger Deluxe at Moe's Burger Inn is among the best burgers I've found. What's more, the place has absolutely no atmosphere. Diners can sometimes see a mountain goat on Mount Linton. The rest of the time there's always Moe. Name a topic and he'll grump about it on cue. It's great fun. -- JOHN CRAIG
The last time we visited, the Chuck Wagon Drive Inn offered about 150 different kinds of burgers including those named: Hog, Shrimp, Oyster, Buffalo, Clam, Prairie Dog (huh?), Hawaiian, Piggy, Chicken Wagon, Buffalo, Halibut, Cranberry Sauce, Chedder Cheese and the Big Sue (four patties). I opted for a Potato Burger and it was awesome. Check this place out. -- THE EDITOR
My vote for Best Burger in the West is Olympia's own Big Tom's Drive-In. They sell a Big Tom Burger, which is a double meat and cheese, everything on it burger with a special delicious sauce they call 'Goop.' For 25 cents, you can get extra 'Goop' on the side for dipping fries. The restaurant is a drive-up window only...and has about the square footage of a modest tool shed. -- JOHN PAGET
No burger list is complete without an Earthquake Burger at 4112 S Meridian. The burger is the size of a dinner plate. -- GEORGE C
A Willy Burger is 3- 1/4 lbs. meat patties, ham, bacon, cheese, lettuce, tomato, pickles, onions, special sauce on a sesame seed bun. Any why you want it made. Willapa Willy's Chilli is operated by Everett "Tiny" McVey at the Raymond, Washington Tourist Center. He says, "If there is'nt any juice running off your elbows it's not right!" Information and entertainment are free of charge. -- ALEX ORKNEY
The best burger in Clark County is Don and Jo's Deluxe Burger, w/ cheese and onions please. It's a traditional burger made from scratch -- a "remove your watch and rings" burger because the juices run down your arm. -- RON AND MELISSA BISHOP
Just north of Seattle in Shorline is a small restaurant called Suni's, run by Greeks. They make the Suni Burger amoung others. Its large with everything on it and comes with steak fries. I used to devour it, but as I age it takes me a little longer..I also like their chicken ceasar salad. Other sandwiches are the blue cheese burger, New York steak sandwich (takes me two days to eat in halves). Suni's is at NE 180th and 15th NE. -- BOB HAWK
Minor's Burgers is located in the south end of town and offer several different delicious burgers. They were just a walk up and order place for many years but now have inside dining where you can order and eat inside. They still have picnic tables outside and very ample RV parking! -- JOHN MOORE
Zeke's Hamburgers (on Highway 2 between Gold Bar and Index) has huge hamburgers with all the trimmings in quantity. The burgers are extra juicy, and taste just plain taste great. And you gotta try the onion rings, too! -- DAVE McHENRY
If you can find Bill (pop. 2) , then you'll have no problem finding a burger at general store/Post Office (the town's only business). The burger is nothing fancy -- a bun, meat and some sauce, but it tasted delicious. Maybe it has to be with being in the middle of nowhere (on state route 59 north of Douglas). It's been awhile since I tasted this burger; maybe it's not so good anymore. Let me know if you find out -- THE EDITOR
For good burgers, Billy's Burgers in the Cadillac Grill redefines the term. Thick, absorbent bibs are de rigeur. -- WYOMING STATE TOURISM
In early 1991, we inducted the following burgers into the OUT WEST BURGER HALL OF FAME. The ratings are from zero to five -- five being an absolutely awesome taste adventure. Some of the truly bad burgers gained entry solely because of their excellent names.
We rated the burgers on several factors:
1999 update: The Shooting Star Saloon still has the best burger. Burger joints from this list that we believe have bit the dust are the Big Burger Drive In & Miss Piggies Cafe. The Family Restaurant in Joyce, Wash., has changed names and we don't know if the Logger Burger is still on the menu. The Space Age Coffee Shop in Gila Bend burned down, but has been rebuilt.
©2002 by Out West Newspaper
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