Look, this isn’t an easy yes or no question, it requires delicate treatment and the answer has more facets than the Koh-i-Noor. Ultimately, after traipsing around every hot grill we could feast our greedy chops on, we’ve shaved it down to a meek and manageable 10 venues that are yet to let us down.
Here are our picks of the best places to burg up in Brisbane:
Dark Horse Number 69 | Just Poppy’s
Sneaky Poppy’s runs a covert, ‘neath the radar operation which evaded us for far too long. Their compendium of burger offerings is a mind blowing testament to the tenacity of our burger-loving city totalling a whopping 69 different burgers (don’t be so childish) championing everything from standard beef patties and steak to meat free wonders and twisty concoctions. Is there one with pineapple? Of course there is.
The Classic Cheeseburger | Ben’s Burgers
Shaved meat grilled in flatbread is not a burger. Raw fish on rice is not a burger. Fermented grape juice in a box is not a burger. If you can’t tell where I’m going with this, check out Ben’s. They teach one lesson and the lesson is this: a burger is a beef patty with sauce, cheese and potentially crunchy accoutrements between a fluffy sesame seed bun. Don’t get it confused.
The Team Builder | The Bleachers
From the minds that brought you Ben’s (see above) comes the Cheers of Brisbane’s burger joints. These people get you, they understand your needs and they’re always ready to nurture you through a tough day with a champion burger and some house-made soft serve. When a regulation hottie swans onto the scene and steals my place in the squad I no longer get struck down by feelings of inadequacy. I mean yeah she’s cheer captain, but I’m at The Bleachers. Spoiler alert: I get the guy AND a burger.
Kaleidoscope of Protein | Chur Burger
Whoever is behind the menu at Chur Burger is clearly not starved of innovation. Beef is not the only source of glory and Chur’s truly staggering array of choice covers everything from chicken, chickpeas and pulled pork, to lamb, pork belly, and a zesty crumbed fish fillet. Now for the impressive part, literally everything on the menu is outstanding. I’m not playing. Choosing a ‘best of Chur’ would be like trying to decide which Backstreet Boy I love most, ie impossible.
Blues Guzzler | Red Hook
Whether you’re dining in or at the drive-in, make the honest move to Red Hook and then begin to see what they’re doing to me this extra meat is not for free; it’s so cheesy it’s thrilling me, so desperately I sing to thee of lunch. SURE but also flaming bacon and a shmear of sauce. And I can’t get enough of this resource. It’s fine, well no in fact sublime. When I’m feeling stuck and got 12 bucks I don’t rely on food trucks because The Hook brings you back.
Cheat Day | Ze Pickle
The famed Ze Pickle made their name in levelling up burger chow and now they’ve gone full turbo and cranked their entire operation up to full tilt. The amp and jazz of this titanic burger haunt is making it bounce around like coins in a Lestrange vault, administering foundation-shaking chompery that’s messing us up in the best of ways. If you need a more detailed description of the experience, click here.
Fixin’s Fixer | Getta Burger
Where the fries are more than a side, Getta feasts are proper beasts. Their entire menu holds its own pretty well against the stiffest of Brisbane’s burger competitors, but the standout has got to be the Getta Boss, which is not only a revenue-raising, micro-managing, synergy-promoting juggernaut but is such a daunting prospect that to finish one of these suckers is the burger equivalent of a touchdown.
The Curveball | Buzz Bistro
Spend any time flitting about the sparkly Gasworks precinct and you’ll notice that it doesn’t really seem like it’s harbouring one of the best burgers in Brisbane. Where’s the graffiti? The grungy brickwork? The mobs of disaffected youths loitering near bin fires? Make no mistake Buzz Bistro delivers. Their cheeseburger is one hefty hell of a grill offering fit for everyone from a Queen to a worker bee.
The Flare Gunner | Gerard’s Bar
Just because they’re known as one of the swankiest watering holes in town doesn’t mean Gerard’s Bar is above grilling you a cheeseburger. Of course, as with the rest of their operation (which includes house cured meats and the best charcuterie going) Gerard’s isn’t about to do anything by halves. Every inch of their cheeseburger is packed with tasty oomph and a permeation of charred and smoky flavour that comes from being finished off on the grill with what looks like a handheld flamethrower.
Image credit: Ariana Gillrie