Mention burgers, and Denverites are lightening-quick to argue their favorites. And while debating the city's best burger is a never-ending battle, we recently asked readers for their input as part of our 2015 Burger Survey, resulting in these top 10 picks that range from old-school stalwarts to over-the-top skyscrapers. Did you favorite make the cut? Read on to find out.
"Unbelievably awesome" patties made with "superb meat" are the siren song of this decades-old, no-frills roadhouse in Sedalia that nabbed the No. 1 spot on our survey. The juicy burgers, topped simply with American cheese and sided with pickles and onions, take a minimalist approach, and the joint doesn't serve fries, but that doesn't stop fans from deeming it a "burger paradise."
Must-Order: A double cheeseburger $6.70 (or $6.80 if you get it to go)
5453 Manhart St., Sedalia; 303-688-9967
Expect a huge variety of creative, "amazing" beef burgers (plus "phenomenal" turkey, buffalo and veggie versions too) festooned with fresh toppings at this homegrown chain, which also draws praise for its fries and stellar service.
Must-Order: The Scarpone ($9.50) topped with provolone, sheets of pancetta, giardiniera and truffled garlic aïoli, or the burger of the month
Owner Clint Wangsnes delivers a consistently top-notch experience at this Park Hill counter-serve spot that satisfies carnivores and herbivores alike, thanks to the right combo of “amazing” beef patties and an “outstanding" housemade veggie burger.
Must-Order: Veggie burger ($9.50)
4990 E. Colfax Ave.; 720-550-7665
This Boulder hot spot (comprising a restaurant, bar, butchery, sandwich emporium and market all under one roof) from Top Chef victor Hosea Rosenberg turns out one helluva craveable burger. The house-ground patty — a Carter Country Ranch blend of 40-day, dry-aged trim and, for good measure, bone marrow (!) — arrives stacked with crisped house-cured bacon, melty slices of Swiss, horseradish-and-habanero-spiced pickles and house sauce on a Grateful Bread bun. Bonus: every burger comes sidekicked with a mound of hand-cut Kennebec fries.
Must-Order: House burger ($16)
1606 Conestaga St., Boulder; 303-247-1000
While just about everything on the menu at this energetic American restaurant is superb, those in the know go for the "delicious" double cheeseburger topped with harissa aïoli, Gruyère and housemade tater tots; for just a buck more, aficionados "highly recommend" elevating the judiciously salted and peppered patty with a fried egg, fried pickles and strips of Tender Belly bacon.
Must-Order: Oak-grilled double cheeseburger ($13)
3350 Brighton Blvd.; 720-542-3721
The "ridiculously delicious," "bomb burgers" crowned with "innovative" ingredients "never fail to please" patrons who frequent this LoHi restaurant and watering hole. Extra draws include a killer beer list and happy-hour specials.
Must-Order: Shroom Luva’s burger ($10) with sautéed mushrooms, Emmentaler cheese and white truffle aïoli, or the smashed burger ($10) topped with American cheese, red leaf lettuce, Roma tomato, red onion and barbecue bacon aïoli
2219 W. 32nd Ave.; 720-287-4493
"It's the American all-star" of "simple classic perfection," swoon supporters of this LoDo hot spot's "juicy" and "perfectly salted and peppered" double-decker burger topped with pickles, zesty "special sauce," melted onions and American cheese. Everything about it, including the "squishy" locally baked bun, is "fantastic," agree surveyors, who "just wish" that the lunch- and happy-hour-only option was a dinner staple too.
Must order: All-American cheeseburger ($15), which comes with fries or a salad plus a Coors Banquet beer or soda
1500 Wynkoop St.; 303-623-2665
"Gigantic" and "super-creative" hand-formed burgers propped with all sorts of "crazy, offbeat toppings" are the cattle call of this local chain that favors "fresh, local ingredients." And while some voters point to "wacky combinations" that are "completely over the top," most agree that the "clever" tactics result in "good value for the money."
Must-Order: The Luther burger ($11) with bacon, cheddar, egg and onion sandwiched between two glazed donuts, or the Love Stinks ($11) paved with garlic cream cheese and topped with onion strings, candied bacon, onions, garlic mayo, red pepper aïoli and roasted red peppers
This airy, lively split-level LoDo hangout is named for its dual focus on meaty and veggie fare. Rest assured the burgers fall squarely on the hearty side, whether topped with beer-battered onion rings and bourbon ketchup or made Southwest-style with tortillas and green-chile jam.
Crowds flock to this iconic Cherry Creek spot for "awesome" and "unique" burgers mounted with "interesting toppings" on "juicy" patties that "always come out exactly the way you order it." And if some call it a "little overrated," most agree that it's still a "top pick." P.S. The frings, a mixture of fries and onion rings, make "the perfect side."
Must-Order: The half-pound Cricket burger with green chile ($8.75), or the burger of the week (market price)
2641 E. Second Ave.; 303-322-7666