There is no doubt we devote a lot of time and focus on where to find the best burgers, and rightly so. I mean, it is somewhat in our title, if not DNA, to try and seek out the best burgers around. But this is only ever part of the story.
In telling the tale of where we go, the venue itself will get something of a description from us, and it does influence the score to some extent. It is no surprise that an average burger in a great environment will taste better than the same one consumed in a rat and flea invested hovel. Luckily we have yet to come across any of the latter.
Sometimes what you want though is just a really nice place to go for lunch, over and above strictly chasing the very best food. Yes, we all want the best of both, and sometimes this does fall into place. But a good burger in a great venue with (maybe) a choice beverage….I mean, what more can you ask for?
To this end we give you or opinion as to the top 5 CBD burger serving venues we have encountered so far, with a couple of honourable mentions for good measure. What is “best” is of course highly subjective, and there is a broad spectrum ranging from somewhere that is just really interesting and unique, to a place that is classy, efficient and highly professional.
Beyond this, the only housekeeping we need mention is that the order is purely for listing purposes, not a specific ranking.
Bread & Bone – Peel Street
B&B are part of the new wave of small bars and eateries that are starting to spring up around Adelaide. Located on the increasingly popular Peel Street, a tiny side alley off Currie Street, this boasts both an extremely cool vibe and and outstanding range of burgers and other goodies. You can read the praise we heaped on them in our review, but suffice to say that this is one of our favourite venues around the city. It was the brainchild of the owners of Press*, itself a great place to visit, and they have nailed the casual but refined, ‘underground’ yet professional combination.
As a bonus, the burgers are pretty darn good too (in our experience anyhow) and they have an interesting selection of tap beverages. Win, win and win.
Veggo and Lovin It – Rundle Street
A vegetarian venue? On a must visit list? I don’t know why this is a thought that I believe people will have but hands up if you did? Ok now write us a comment to say if you put up your hand.
Veggos has been here since Adelaide was first foundered, or nearly that long anyhow. I have it on good authority that it has remained essentially unchanged for the last 20-odd years, and while for some this is a very bad idea, this is definitely an exception. Step through the unmarked door and its like stepping through a wormhole in the fabric of space and time. This is a parallel universe where it’s ok to have random pieces of furniture. It ok to use a dressing table (complete with mirror) as a table. Its fine to only seat a relative handful of people. You really don’t need to worry about having a clear path to the emergency exit.
The vegetarian (and mostly vegan) menu of burgers is extensive. They are also massive so they give the option of ordering a half, which is most unique.
This has been very high on the “must go back to” since our initial visit, and writing this just reinforces that feeling.
The one change they have made recently is to update their sign – walking down Rundle Street you may now even have a chance of noticing and reading it. We suggest you find it and then head up the narrow stairs to see what we are talking about.
Hereford Beefstouw – Hutt Street
If you like your burger served with a side of cool, yet warm and welcoming professionalism then this is the place for you.
It is quite an art to making something seem simple and restrained, yet full of so many little details that it’s quite obvious that more thought than you would believe has gone into it.
Put simply this is a casual enough, yet classy place so as to not put off or embarrass anyone. It exudes efficiency, from the organised layout, the simple but refined decor, to the highly professional and genuinely friendly staff. As a dining experience goes this was essentially flawless, and they got within a whisker of equal top spot on the burger leaderboard to boot.
Lovely people, great venue and from what we experienced, excellent food. Not cheap when you peruse the steaks, but for an occasional thing this should be on your list. For all that though, the burgers were….well…..burger prices, so don’t let that put you off.
You can read our review again, but just make space in your calendar, grab a mate or so and head to Hutt Street. Then send us a thank you later on.
Kings Head Hotel – King William Street
Kings Hotel, the Kings Head, The Kings Head Hotel….I do get a bit confused as to what to call this venue, as it has been rebranded a little bit over the years. I have vague memories of going there many, many years ago for a social club event (when I wasn’t a member of the social club) and enjoying copious amounts of free alcohol on the night. I dont remember too much else, as its all a bit fuzzy.
What isn’t fuzzy though is how great this place is since its rebirth. While I dislike this term, it is a ‘gastro pub’, and not in the sense that you might immediately think of. Their philosophy is something that I personally love – no pokies, a focus on local produce, local beers and wines, and making it a welcoming and interesting place to be. Regardless of the season the Kings Head really comes up trumps, with open fireplaces in winter, a cool and relaxing vibe to enjoy regardless of the weather and then some outdoor seating for when the sun is shining.
Added into this is the fact that their food is pretty darn great, and their pork belly burger arguably the best pub burger we have experienced. We also tried their “King of Cheeseburgers” however the review didn’t quite make it to paper, but suffice to say that was excellent too. Their beer list is ever changing and focussed on local boutique beers, and they are always on the list of venue’s which receive the really unique brews that pop up.
Personally, I think this is the best pub in Adelaide and I am extremely glad that this isn’t my local, as it means its rather more difficult to try and move in and live there by stealth. These are just my words though. Do yourself a favour – grab a mate or so, get on down there, pick an interesting beer you may not have tried before, and order a burger. You honestly cannot go wrong.
I anticipate this being a little controversial, and I understand why. First up, they don’t make anything they name a ‘burger’. This is probably strategic on their behalf, trying to distance themselves from pre-conceived ideas about what a burger is or should be. However, Mr and Mrs Pickle, you put pulled pork and brisket in a roll. You make it (and everything else we have tried) truly, truly amazing. We can see through this flimsy disguise.
The next thing – yes it’s a food truck. How is this a venue? Well, it simply means you have enjoy their consistently amazing food in the surrounds of the beautiful city of Adelaide. Sure, some of you may scoff at this but contrast it with other capital cities and there is no comparison. Trees, grass, greenery, fountains, open air, sunshine…..what more do you want?
YeahI we know its not licensed. Yep, you have to clean up after yourself. No, there is no reserved seating. If it rains it’s not so good, and if it’s 4000 degrees it’s a bit uncomfortable. But for the rest of the Adelaide spring/summer/autumn/winter it’s just fine.
Throw in generous quantities, super friendly people, a rotating and changing menu and you have an absolute winner.
Sneaky Pickle have never, ever let us down. You can see what we thought of the Brisket Sandwich and their Pulled Pork Bun before. Just get there early (plan a 12 lunch as they do sell out!), pull up some nearby grass and take it all in. And the pork fries….i am literally salivating while writing this. Just find the truck and order something.
Yes we love their burgers (need to tell you about more, but here is the Al Capone), but its actually a pretty cool place in its own right. Throw in friendly and efficient staff, some really good beers on their list and we are happy campers indeed.
La Bonne Table
A very recent visit, La Bonne Table is a wine and tapas bar, as well as fine dining restaurant, stuck out by itself near the main fire station on Wakefield Street. Odd location, but unquestionably a very sweet place. Their burger was also brilliant, which helps.
Treasury (beer garden)
The Treasury bar was once a frequent hang out, but never thought of as a food venue. Well, that changed one day and we are very glad it did. The food is of a high standard, sharing the kitchen with a fine dining restaurant you would hope so, but its the beer garden which is really worth the visit. Again this is a fair weather place, but when the sun gods are plying their trade its hard to find a nicer place to park your bum for a bevvy and/or some food.
Bliss Organic Cafe
Last but not least, another vegetarian place, this time near the central markets on Compton Street (just off Gouger Street). Inside is all well and good, but its the courtyard that is the real gem. Sitting there, it feels like you are a million miles away from the middle of a capital city. A gem of a place to just get away from it all for a while, and some really good food too.
So there you have it. There are others that could have been included (Benjamin on Franklin, First Bar at Hotel Richmond, Press* and so on), as there are some really good places to get food dotted around, and as always this really is about personal preference. But thats why we cannot be wrong – you just may not agree! However if we haven’t been somewhere you think would make the grade in these terms, then please let us know, and we will get onto reviewing that ASAP.