To feed your burger addiction with fresh and fully loaded content, we’ve created a list to out-stack any creative customized combo you’ve dreamed up. We’re lookin’ for the burger that’s so fresh you’ve gotten to know the backstory of the ranch it grew up on. You’ve built up your vocabulary through ingredients from all of the burgers you’ve tried. The burgers are getting wetter, cheesier, taller and sexier. Does your burger ooze with yolk? Did your toppings make it into an aioli? We’ve raised the standard and pretty much any burger that’s going into your mouth better have a story to tell. Are you listening? Can you hear that bacon hiss on the flat-top? Slap some butter on those buns and let’s get toasty. Here we list the newest and tastiest burgers around. We’re not shy of crazy — are you?
Citizen Kitchen | The Hotel Fullerton Anaheim | 1500 S. Raymond Avenue, Fullerton
Located inside The Hotel Fullerton, Citizen Kitchen’s menu is the brain child of Chef Zach Geerson who’s focus is seasonal ingredients in a modern and innovative fashion. The new Barcelona Burger who’s patty is made of Chef’s 4-way burger blend, is topped with seafood paella, duck confit, pimentos aioli, frisée, almonds and sherry vinaigrette. You better believe we are not holding back on this one! Be bold. You can always sleep off your food coma at the hotel … and then come back for a nightcap with a cocktail. Rusty Nail anyone? This cocktail features Pig’s Nose and Drambuie, garnished with a lemon twist. Cheers!
Pig Pen Delicacy | TRADE Food Hall | 2222 Michelson Dr, Irvine | pigpendelicacy.com
As if you needed another reason to love bacon, Pig Pen Delicacy’s sophisticated and modern interpretations of bacon and pork favorites has us obsessing over their new Maple Bacon Jam Burger, featuring bacon jam, havarti cheese, chive aioli and fried onion strings over top of an all-beef patty. What’s on the menu for dessert? That’s right, you guessed it, bacon! You have to order a side of candied bacon for the ride home, this oven-baked bacon with brown sugar and spices adds to that mic drop moment.
Slaters 50/50 | 8082 Adams Ave, Huntington Beach | slaters5050.com
At Slater’s they are reinventing the idea of what it means to play with your food. If you like over-the-top, in-your-face burgers that are loaded with flavor (also known as bacon) then Slater’s may already be showing up in your Waze app as your home location. Just when you thought their magical 50/50 burger couldn’t get any better … they reinvented your standards. Hey! It’s just in their nature. The reformulated burger is thicker, juicier and just as sexy as it was before. Build your own jaw-dropping burger by using this patty as your canvas. Whether it turns out to be a Pollock or a Manet, sandwich it with a toasted-to-perfection brioche bun and the critics will be satisfied.
TAPS Fish House & Brewery | 101 E. Imperial Hwy, Brea | tapsfishhouse.com
Who doesn’t love an anniversary celebration!? Whether you’re kissing your 80-year-old grandma on the cheek because her and your grandpa have made it another year, or the left-field alternative, TAPS is having a burger special. To celebrate their 17th year in business, the signature Burger will be offered for an anniversary price ($1.99, normally $14.99) every Friday during the month of September to signify the year 1999, when they first opened. The TAPS Burger features a hefty eight-ounce blended patty, made of aged choice Angus chuck, short rib AND brisket. This burger goes next level, layered with sharp cheddar cheese, red onion, tomato, pickle, rémoulade and butter lettuce. Wash it down with Amend This!, an American-style Pilsner modeled after a pre-prohibition lager. With all that money you saved from the special, you better buy another round of drinks, because this beer is delicious! By the end of your meal you should be as toasty at the brioche bun you just ate.
Vaca | 695 Town Center Drive, Ste 170 | Costa Mesa | vacarestaurant.com
If you work by South Coast Plaza then you might as well call Vaca the employee break room, because everyone ends up here when their clocked out. You’re the type of person that really digs superior tasting meats and that’s why you keep coming back here, or it could be those Spanish cocktails you can’t get enough of. Well now you have yet another reason to come back here, the burger. This twist on this tradition comes from the hands of celebrity chef, Amar Santana. Their Hamburguesa features a grilled prime beef patty and crispy Spanish chorizo on a fluffy brioche bun with smoked paprika aioli and overnight tomatoes. And if you feel like taking this burger next level, accept the option to add Spanish cabrales blue cheese or Spanish manchego cheese.
HopDoddy | The Tustin Market Place | 3030 El Camino Real, Tustin | hopdoddy.com
Thoughtfully crafted, well proportioned burgers made with the freshest available, all-natural ingredients is what you get at Hopdoddy. And lucky us, they just opened a new location at The Tustin Market. Their beef comes from those happy, humanely raised cows. You know, the ones that are never, ever given growth hormones or antibiotics? Not feeling the beef? They also offer bison, lamb, chicken, turkey, sushi-grade tuna and a black bean-corn patty. If you’re the type of person that can fall in love with an aioli so much that you just want to rub it all over your face and put it in your hair, then the Primetime Burger is for you. This beauty features grass-fed beef, Brie cheese, arugula, caramelized onions, that truffle aioli that makes you act strange because you love it so much, steak sauce and beefsteak tomato. The overall flavor profile of this burger is very rich but it won’t leave you feeling weighed down with regret. You can attribute this to the thoughtfully crafted proportions of the burger.
25 Degrees | 412 Walnut Ave, Huntington Beach | 25degreesrestaurant.com
In case you were ever wondering the precise temperature difference between a raw and well-done hamburger, it’s 25 degrees. Where the burgers are as fancy as the décor, this burger bar offers chic, sophistication on and off the plate. This is the kind of place where you come for the burger and you stay for the atmosphere. With the amount of different ingredient options available in this house, your imagination (and your wallet) is your only limitation. Just a teaser of what we’re talking about, their cheese selections include the Benedictine, creamy smoked mozzarella, tart and creamy crescenza and a blue veined prelibato Gorgonzola that has us melting in our seats. If you start to feel like your drowning in options, just opt for the Number 5 “Truffle Style” featuring, mushroom, truffle oil, Dijon aioli, arugula, caramelized onion and smoked mozzarella. You’ll thank us later. Seriously, this truffle addiction will be hard to kick.
Fritzi DTLA | 814 Traction Ave, Los Angeles | fritzidtla.com
Located in the Historic Arts District in LA, the industrial chic restaurant, Fritzi, has Chef Neal Fraser serving up his other-worldly, artisanal nosh, including his Fritzi Burger. Chef’s burger features a nine-hour sous-vide Nueskie’s bacon-beef blend patty, topped with creamy fontina fondue, crisp iceberg lettuce, calabrese relish and thousand island, served with your choice of fries, tots or potato waffle. Pair with Arts District Brewing Co. beer for the ultimate ticket to burger nirvana. This spot screams fancy in your mouth all while promoting a casual no dress-code vibe. The best part, you get that transcendental moment for your taste buds without the hefty price tag.
Petit Trois | 718 Highland Ave, Los Angeles | petittrois.com
Chef Ludo Lefebvre reinvents your interpretation of the double cheeseburger, inspired by the cheeseburger at Au Cheval in Chicago. The Big Mec at Petit Trois features two 4-ounce beastly, prime beef patties that are flooded with bordelaise sauce and topped with American cheese and garlic aioli. This savory, delicious masterpiece that they call a burger doesn’t have us missing lettuce and tomato in the slightest. Rumor has it, there may even be foie gras in that sauce, and we couldn’t be more delighted. Not that this burger needs directions, but we do suggest cutting it in half, eating it until it falls apart in your hands, and then just putting your face in the plate.
Love & Salt | 317 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach | loveandsaltla.com
You might not expect this Italian-inspired restaurant with a California soul to offer a burger, but they do. You’d think this was the best kept secret in LA, but let’s be honest, a burger this good doesn’t stay hush-hush for long. This now famous burger that was intended to be on the DL (hence the Downlow Burger name) features wagyu beef, caramelized onions, aged cheddar, house pickles, rosemary Parmesan and tomato aioli. This is the kind of burger you could fall in love with, it hugs you in all the right places.
The Standing Room | 144 N Catalina Ave, Redondo Beach | thestandingroomrestaurant.com
The next time you’re in Redondo Beach and you’re headed to the liquor store for some beer and Lotto tickets, you might stumble upon a very tiny counter where some of the best burgers in LA are served. Enter with no regrets, or on a cheat day, because you’re about to have one of the best fancy-gastropub-meets-Asian-influence burgers touch your lips. Whether you decide on the Cash Burger served with shishito pepper, bacon, cheddar, American cheese, onion ring, Korean aioli, and hoisin BBQ sauce … or the Hapa Burger, featuring spring mix, onion, scallion, sesame leaf tossed in spicy vinaigrette, fried egg, gouchu Q and Korean aioli, you are guaranteed an absolute flavor bomb — Boom.
Hawkins House of Burgers | 11603 S Slater St, Los Angeles | hawkinsburgers.com
You could go into cardiac arrest just by looking at this burger. The Whipper Burger features two generously portioned Angus beef patties, ooey gooey cheese, pastrami, a hot link and your classic burger produce to balance this beast of a burger out. By no means should you think that this burger is compensating with size, not one ingredient is unnecessary, each being full of flavor and contributing to texture and structure. Just a heads up, the burgers do take about 20 minutes to make since they are made-to-order. You can tell that person behind the grill is persnickety about the details, and we couldn’t be more excited to reap the benefits.
In-N-Out | Various locations | in-n-out.com
No doubt, this is the only burger where it’s ok to eat the paper cheese and nobody will look twice at you. In fact, this is probably where that nasty habit started. Their lines don’t intimidate you, because they are always running like a well-oiled machine. It’s the kind of place that you’ll smell before you see that glowing neon sign, then your cheeks pinch in excitement. Animal style fries could have been the best thing invented, but at the end of the day it’s not about their milkshakes (although those are bomb) it’s about the burger. The bun has the perfect balance with a soft middle and crunchy edges, the beef is super fresh, and all of the ingredients come together the way a classic straight-forward cheeseburger should. Workin’ the grill since 1945, you should expect nothing less.
Jack in the Box | Various locations | jackinthebox.com
Jack’s new Brew House Bacon Burger is making fast-food sexy, and not in a Carl’s Jr. kind of way. This beauty features 1/4 lb signature beef patty, topped with authentic porter ale cheese sauce, tasty grilled onions, and hickory smoked bacon — all on a toasted artisan potato bun. Follow that up with an order of their crispy garlic herb French fries, or those curly fries that you’ve become so loyal to, and you might think you were at an actual brewhouse. Then you realize you’re actually in a drive-thru and last-minute impulsively add the Oreo shake, because at this point you’re all in and committed to this fourth meal moment.