5 Must Try Burgers in Grand Rapids
It is no secret that Stella’s Lounge has the best burger in Grand Rapids. This vibrant bar is popular, not just for its burgers, but also for the 80’s retro arcade theme, graffiti walls and selection of over 200 whiskeys. But let’s get back to the burgers. GQ Magazine voted them the best burger in America. They make these half pound patties with 100% Black Angus beef. The most popular include the Stella Blue Burger, The Buffalo, Gov’t Cheese, and the Big Ballah. Some of the burgers are stuffed with cheese and they even have vegetarian options. One contains black beans and lentils and the other is vegan, using all plant based products. Both of these are seasoned to perfection and make great substitutes for those who do not eat meat. Don’t forget to get the chronic fries, these seasoned fries compliment the burgers quite well.
Brick and Porter is still a relatively new restaurant in downtown, however don’t let that fool you. These guys make some amazing food and are doing well enough to already have a second location. Their burgers are half pound and served on brioche rolls. You can also choose to substitute a gluten free bun. They have a variety of options for burgers with some unique flavors. The Meat Wagon has bacon, shaved ribeye, and pastrami, horseradish aioli, lettuce, tomato, onion and pickle. The Samoan Burger has jalapeno aioli, pico de gallo, lettuce, a grilled pineapple ring, bacon, and pepper jack cheese. They also have many other options. Don’t sleep on their fries either, these battered fries are tasty. Pair one of these burger with one of the many craft beers on tap and you’ve got yourself an amazing meal.
HopCat is a nice little burger bar that prides itself in its eco friendly management and delicious food. Owned by the same company as Stella’s Lounge, it’s no surprise they borrowed some ideas from the award-winning burgers and created their own line of them. They are not exactly the same but they are still pretty darn good. These half pound burgers are made from a blend of brisket, sirloin, and ground chuck. The former crack fries, now known as cosmik fries, are the real winner here. The seasoning blend they use is second-to-none and delicious. Combined with an already really good burger and you have a match made in heaven. Some of the favorite burgers her include the Original Bar Zee, Paddy Melt, Cowboy, and Mushroom. They also offer vegetarian and vegan burger options so satisfy those with dietary restrictions or preferences.
The Cottage Bar is the oldest downtown bar in Grand Rapids, opened in 1927. The Cottage Burger served here has been awarded the best burger in Michigan by USA Today. They serve this burger on a rye bun, complete with both American and Swiss cheeses, green olives, lettuce, tomato, bacon and the signature hickory mayo. In addition, they also have other burger options including the Kentucky Bourbon Burger, Milwaukee Cheddar Burger, Chili Burger and Mac & Cheese Burger. They even have 3 styles of their award winning chili available daily. You will see inside that the bar maintains much of the original decor, maintaining the warm welcoming environment. The bar is still the original Art Deco mahogany bar. If you haven’t tried it yet, stop in for a beer and a burger, you’ll be glad you did.
Brewery Vivant is a unique brewery, situated inside a converted, historic funeral home in Eastown. Don’t let this freak you out because the food is great, and the drinks are wonderful. Vivant features a build your own burger starting with a house blend half pound burger patty, or you can even substitute a spent grain quinoa patty. From this you can add a cheese; white cheddar, gruyere, or crumbled bleu cheese. You can also choose to add pecan smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato, and/or bacon-onion marmalade. Brewery Vivant also brews all of their own beers. These farmhouse ales are inspired from countryside breweries in Northern France and Southern Belgium.