Burger Time

Accounts of the various burger joints around town.

Related: Directory of burger places in San Diego County

Burgers for all in South Park

Five adults, three kids, and a dog at Station Tavern

When family comes to town, everybody looks to Uncle Ian to ask a deceptively simple question: “Where should we meet for lunch?” Visiting friends often ask for recommendations such as “Where can I get good ...

MishMash and Iron Fist bring burger-beer bars to the barrio

“What I like with the restaurant scene is that small is beautiful again."

There’s a lot of change in Barrio Logan. The building boom on César Chávez has brought several new places. For starters there’s Mariscos El Pulpo, a Mexican-style sports bar-eatery. Then there’s Malane’s place, MishMash, this ...

Best burger within a short drive

Charley’s Famous Hamburgers

When San Diegans discuss the area’s best burger, the two top contenders are usually Hodad’s in Ocean Beach and Downtown and Rocky’s Crown Pub near Pacific Beach. I understand. Both places make high-quality burgers. I ...

No sexy ads, cartoon mascots, or meat

Plant Power fast food

Vegan fast food. It might sound like a contradiction in terms, but it’s out there, trying to be fast as can be without serving animal or animal by-product. Bankers Hill restaurant Evolution has been working ...

Burgers and beer, then and now

La Jolla Tap and The Shack

It’s easy to talk about a restaurant’s food. Almost too easy. Sometimes there are better stories to be told if you go a little deeper. In the mid-‘90s, all we wanted was cold Tecate, cheap ...

Whatever you do, stay south of Calle Primera

Buda Burgers, in the bad part of town

The first time I tried a Buda Burger was two years ago. My roommate had left a half-eaten burger in the fridge, and I was hungry. He later gave me directions on how to find ...

A new contender for best burger

Balboa Bar & Grill enters the fray

After I wrote about the simplicity of the burger at Rocky’s Crown Pub recently, I heard all about everybody’s favorite burger spots. Like Rocky’s, most were places that count their longevity in decades rather than ...

No bacon, no pepper jack, no fried egg, no avocado

Rocky’s stubbornly serves same burger

When I first moved to San Diego I fell in with an avid burger crowd, basically a bunch of guys with strong opinions on who makes the best in town. Most were in agreement the ...

McDonald's commercial fooled me

I am not lovin' it.

The last time I went to McD's was in 2010 at LAX, one of the worst airports at which to eat. That day, I strayed from the burgers and got nuggets and a McFlurry. I ...

Greasy indie burgers and fries inside Colectivo 9

It’s as if the meat is sandwiched between two clouds

The Gastrocourt Colectivo 9 opened on September of last year and has grown in popularity and volume. What was once an empty hallway leading to the semi-hidden food court is now a bustling row of ...

Money Pit builds a burger cheap

In-N-Out it’s not

Drive-thru burger joints hold a distinct place in Southern California lore, but this being the 21st Century, the only burger I’m willing to eat in my car anymore starts and ends with the word “double.” ...

Burgers and açaí at Swami’s Café

“Have you tried the açaí bowl?” she asked. “It’s the bomb.”

Loud. That was the first thing that came to mind when I walked into Swami’s Café in Oceanside, so I grabbed a menu to peruse on the patio where I snagged a table with a ...

This is a new burger day!

Sticky stuff force field at Main Tap Tavern

“The End is Beer,” reads a little sign. “Uh, you do food?” I ask the gal at the bar.

Banana burgers?

Caribbean Escape replaces buns with plantains

A burger with buns made of bananas? Welcome to the Caribbean, East Village-style! It takes the form of a big blue truck with “Caribbean Escape” pasted over its sides. It’s parked in the Quartyard space ...

Not a steak, but not a bad burger

Out of the way joint dishes it cheap and tasty

Walking into Cali Steak Burger Bar forced me into a little semantic introspection. What makes a burger a "steak burger"? For that matter, what distinguishes steak from other cuts of beef? And if you make ...

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