We've covered the East End, and we're going to continue this burger quest to keep you informed on good burgers and just where to find them. Downtown Houston has burgers for you. Yes, that place where not much happens before 8 a.m. or after 5 p.m. There are varying establishments with styles and flavors to satisfy anyone. Let's get to it.
5. Wimpy's Burgers, 632 Polk
Starting the list strong is Wimpy's Burgers. This place is here, and it's reliable. With daily specials, a simple menu and reasonable prices, it's great for a casual, quick lunch. The ingredients are basic but fresh. Nothing fancy here. Things are cooked to order and the freshness is worth the wait. The owner, Gilbert, is present daily, ensuring quality food and customer service is delivered daily.
4. Burger Theory, 1616 Main
There are 12 locations across the country, though only one in Texas, and it's in Houston. This location offers menu items unique to the state and beer on tap from local breweries, all of which are within five miles of the restaurant. Intercontinental Hotels Group wanted a unique restaurant inside the new Holiday Inn downtown. They switched it up and did it right. Burger Theory was started in 2010 by "throwing out the fast rule book." The restaurant grinds its own beef in-house, using whole chuck steak, and uses only sea salt just before grilling to preserve the pure beef flavor. With the best natural meat-to-fat ratio, the patty maintains its juiciness and structure even after grilling. To top it all off, get the Parmesan-Panko onion rings. They are just as great as the burgers.
3. Rachel's Cafe, 421 San Jacinto
"A simple, no frills, short order grill, that uses great ingredients," says Google user K Verb. This place has a unique burger bun delivered fresh daily from a local bakery — made of challah, a special soft, sweet Jewish braided bread eaten on Sabbath and Jewish holidays. Along with that, Rachel's uses light soy oil as a healthier alternative to lighten the load. "We make it fresh...We don't mess around," says the management team. The locally sourced beef patties and crisp ingredients come together nicely on the special bun. If you're up for it, add the thick-cut bacon to your burger. You won't regret it.
2. Miller's Cafe, 1001 McKinney, No. B4
A person has to go deep for this one, literally, into the tunnels of downtown Houston. Home of the Almost Famous Burger, this long-standing institution has been serving Houston since 1980. Also, it's family-owned and operated. More on that later. The burgers here are made all the way on the Famous Poppy Seed Bun, with whole wheat buns on request. When she was asked about the other ingredients, the reply from family member and manager Jessica Miller Beer was simple: "Nothing special, just fresh ingredients." Those fresh ingredients are piled high and bring amazing flavors. It's worth mentioning that there are additional locations in Clear Lake, The Medical Center and Garden Oaks.
1. Hubcap Grill, 1111 Prairie
This place, where do we start? Hubcap Grill delivers the classics with perfect form, but also with its own twist. Owner Ricky Craig explained that he wanted to bring unique menu items based on things he likes. This approach allowed the restaurant to cater to various tastes and satisfy customers based on their moods or preferences. One can stick to the basics by going with the double meat cheeseburger, mix it up with the popular Philly cheese steak burger, or just get wild with the Frito pie burger. If there's a desire to get just plain crazy, then go with the Sticky Monkey burger: a beef patty with crunchy peanut butter, bacon, American cheese and grilled bananas. From toasting the buns to layering the flavors, construction of these masterpieces is strategic. Hubcap Grill will be erecting well-built bundles of flavor for a long time to come.
The original location is downtown, but you can also visit Hubcap in Galveston, Kemah, The Heights and soon at Bush Intercontinental Airport.
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