Don’t worry guys, this isn’t going to be all about McDonald’s, Burger King, etc etc. We’re all (most of the time) better than that. As most of you know, or will come to know, I really do try and eat well most of the time, but I’m also a big fan of “cheating” like a good burger and fries. Gourmet if you will, comfort food. So here’s just a few here in San Diego (some chains) that have pleased my belly.
- Beef ‘N Bun: A total local favorite, total diner-ish vibe. But they do something right! I grew up going here, and it keeps me coming back. I think the best part- the milkshakes. All my family and friends lend towards their peanut butter, but you know me have to make everything complicated- chocolate peanut butter banana, YUM! They also have a big aquarium, so you can stare at Dory while you chow down. What to order: Quarter pounder, with cheese, and no mayo, french fries (duh), and a peanut butter milkshake.
- In N Out: The classic, a west coast staple. Yes, I think it’s good. But would I want it every week? No. But as I think about it, I’m not sure that I would even “crave” a burger a week. I am a new found fan of their protein burger, animal style (of course) and anything animal style, fries, grilled cheese, classic burger. Who doesn’t love pickles and grilled onions? In-n-out is always consistent, everywhere you go. San Diego, Nevada, Northern California….Oh, and I don’t wanna spoil everything, but they do have a secret menu. What to order: Anything animal style, and I promise you can’t go wrong.
- Luce’s: I heard about this place from a coworker, and of course had to try. They have a greaaat happy hour, which is pretty much my favorite thing ever. But their burger was to die for (insert dramatic music)- I’m not sure if it’s the garlic aioli or how juicy it was, but the fries also had parmesan and arugula on them, also my favorite. The atmosphere here was cute and the staff was friendly. I now refer to this place as a “hidden gem.” What to order: Good thing this place has ONE burger, but the garlic aioli makes up for any other thing you would ever want. But also Sangria, YES!
- Bare Back Grill: This is a New Zealand style cafe, and about a block from the ocean. They have about 10 burgers to choose from. Of course, I got the spiciest (Kiwilango) which wasn’t spicy and needed to have extra hot sauce added (shocker). Their sweet potato fries were the best part, with blue cheese on top. (Here vs. their other restaurant you have to ask for dipping sauce, which I highly recommend. One is like a roasted red pepper and the other one is a wasabi one.) Overall, for unique style burgers that have different options for your taste buds, I’d say this is your place. Plus there have BIG steins of beers for $5 on happy hour (if you like beer). What to order: Kiwilango, add extra jalapenos, and extra hot sauce, with sweet potato fries, and maybe a side of avo? 😉 #avocadooneverything
- Anny’s: You walk in, and immediately see the menu, and you can’t miss that there’s so many options for burgers. It’s almost overwhelming except they all sound amazing. Which makes it that much harder to pick. Going with the #basicbitch I am I got a turkey burger with avocado and of course anything spicy. It was delicious, which I was expecting. The other burger we got, was the blue cheese burger which wasn’t as basic, but it was definitely the better of the two. It has kind of a fast food vibe, but not taste. What to order: Maybe one of each on the menu, juuuust kidding, we’d have to rush you to the hospital, I really liked the blue cheese, and hot sauce, of course, plus waffle fries.
- Hodad’s: a San Diego staple. The line sometimes wraps around the corner, but who minds waiting when the food is worth it! They have a VW van that you can sit in inside, how fun is that! Aite. (Shhh, don’t tell anyone I told you that.) They also apparently hand you get the burger and you have no idea how you fit it in your mouth..just squish it down allowing the juices to run down the side, and take your first be super good milkshakes, I hate to say, but I’ve never had one…after the burger and fries, I don’t have any room! It’s in a total hippy town (OB) so don’t wear anything nicer than jeans, and make sure to show off all of your tats. What to order: They also don’t have many options, I’m #basic and go with the smallest cheese burger, add jalapenos, and of course fries. You can add bacon, for all you bacon lovers out there.7. Corvette Diner: You go for the atmosphere, hands down. It’s a fun place, they come and throw gum and straws at you. They’re all dressed up in ’50s gear, have an old (beautiful) car in the front when you walk in, play ’50s music, have an elvis DJ, and do little dances every hour. I grew up going to birthday parties here, so I still love to relive those days and go here. They have fun types of burgers, this one has peanut butter on it, which isn’t bad for a bite, but I’m not sure I could eat the whole thing. What to order: Dante’s Inferno, and a cookies n cream shake. 8. Burger Lounge: This is a farm to table place (plus), I also like them because they always have seating outside which allows drool to be running down my leg (no, not from me, from Gatsby). I 9/10 times at a burger place will get a turkey burger if it’s offered, and I think burger lounge may be my favorite. They also have a quinoa veggie burger which is on my list to try (so stay tuned for that update). I’m also a big fan of their fries (maybe I’m a fry person?). They have these little green drops of heaven on them and I’m not sure if that’s what makes them amazing or whattttt else. Pictured below, is lavender mint lemonade, perfect! (Maybe bring some vodka to add;) whoops, you didn’t hear that from me.) What to order: Turkey burger, add avocado, and fries. BAM! 9. Rocky’s: Their lunch special is what draws everyone in, $13 for a burger, fries, and a beer. It’s a small bar, cash only, with the only difference between their burgers are cheese and how big your meat patty is, so that makes the indecisive person like me happy (whoops). I’ve heard “best burger in SD” about it for so long, and yes, it is good, but best of all time? Dear lord, that’s a big saying. Definitely worth going to. The bouncer makes people move according to how large your party is. So if you’re two people, he’ll make you move for a larger group if one comes in. What to order: Cheese burger, and fries (to share). From trying many burgers in my life, as well as recently, trying to compare and name “my favorite” or “best ever” I learned that there’s so many types! It’s so hard to compare, you have Bare Back and Anny’s where they’re like gourmet with their options and then you have Beef ‘N Bun and Rocky’s where you have maybe 3 options. But all in all, all delicious and mouth watering. I hope you try all these, and go to the gym before and after;) just kidding! Embrace your inner fat kid today, you deserve it.
~ XOXO, Amanda (& her fully belly)