Boston’s Best Burgers

By Leah Mennies | Boston Magazine |

charlies burger

Best Double Cheeseburger: Charlies Kitchen

With a divey jukebox atmosphere and a classic double that promises to erase even the worst dollar-menu memory, Charlies is the place to satisfy a beefy craving. We love the bare-bones version — just lettuce, tomato, pickles, and creamy American cheese — though enhancements like guac and grilled pineapple are available if you want to get creative. Pair with a side of the addictive beer fries for cheap-eats nirvana.
$5.25, 10 Eliot St., Cambridge, 617-492-9646,


boston burger co. burger

Best Mess: Boston Burger Co.

Juice dribbles down your chin and onto your lap. Your hands? Covered in condiments. But when the sandwich is as delicious as Boston Burger Co.’s “Hot Mess” — topped with Thousand Island dressing, chopped pickles, bacon, American cheese, shredded lettuce, sliced jalapeños, and, yes, sweet potato fries — you’ll hardly mind. Pro tip: Hold your burger over the pile of accompanying potato chips as you take each bite — the gooey toppings taste even better on spuds.
$8.95, 37 Davis Sq., Somerville, 617-440-7361; 1100 Boylston St., Boston, 857-233-4560;


russell house tavern burger

Best Wrapping: Russell House Tavern

We have to hand it to Russell House Tavern chef Michael Scelfo for thinking outside of the bun, especially with so many burger purists out there whining about using an English muffin in place of a traditional roll. They’ve got it wrong, of course, especially when it comes to Russell House’s exceptional burger. Here, the muffin lets the fillings — local beef, bacon, and caramelized onions — shine, while doing a handy job of mopping up all the juices in the process.
$12, 14 JFK St., Cambridge, 617-500-3055,


sam's at louis burger

Best Veggie: Sam’s at Louis

The veggie burger at this waterfront restaurant is so tasty, you might find yourself questioning whether it’s vegetarian at all. Chef Asia Mei is just that good, transforming tofu and shiitake, cremini, and portobello mushrooms into a firm, peppery patty that holds its shape — unlike the countless fall-apart, gluey black-bean varieties that we’ve choked down elsewhere.
$16, 60 Northern Ave., Boston, 617-295-0191,

  • Deb Semine

    How in the world did you forget to mention O’Sullivan’s? Or is that the 13th?

  • Dan Breda

    Best Sliders, Lucky’s Lounge: They are delicious! Chef Nicholas Dixon (Harvard Gardens) pat yourself on the back!

  • Liz

    No seriously tho, where is O’Sullivan’s???

  • Vicky

    R.F. O’Sullivan’s has no place on this list. The pattie is nothing special or inventive, flavor is average, and so are the sides. They boast the monstrous size of their burger as it’s main selling point, leaving much to be desired overall.