A Burger Hop

If you’re looking for a fun date night idea or weekend afternoon with friends, a burger hop is one of my favorites. It’s so easy and perfect for lunch or dinner. 

When we lived in Boston, Bart and I, inexplicably, went on a burger spree. After we paid off our student loans and finally were not spending nothing, we somehow got the idea to try as many different burgers as we could (big spending is clearly in our DNA – time to splurge on an $8 hamburger).

We’d kicked it off with a trip to Mr. Bartley’s Burgers in Harvard Square, when Merrick and Philip came to visit.

Later on that year, we had weekend lunches at Five Guys,  b.good, U Burger, and, our favorite, Sullivan’s, on Castle Island.

Then, when we got back to Texas, we had big plans to continue our search for the best burger. We immediately found a burger joint around the corner from us that we loved – cheap and fantastic, although, as we learned over time, not entirely consistent.

Then . . . we didn’t have any more burgers for a long time.

Until my parents came to visit us in Austin and we went to Hopdoddy where I learned that Landen’s husband, Adam, was an enormous fan of burgers too.

So two weeks later, the four of us headed out to eat as many burgers as we could in one evening.

We started at a little place called Moonie’s and we ordered a single burger with an order of fries. Adam had brought along a knife and carefully quartered the burger, so we could all have some. It was a little more on the gourmet burger end, with a delicious, slightly-sweet bun, and very nice crispy fries. It was my favorite burger of the evening. Bart thought it didn’t have enough sauce and I think it was his least favorite.

Next, a quick trip to Short Stop, which is only a drive-thru, so we picked up a cheeseburger and headed up to Mighty Fine, where we ate our Short Stop burger while we waited for the next burger. Short Stop was a really nice fast-food type burger.

Mighty Fine is one that Bart had talked about for months (his work team use to go to lunch reasonably often and Bart was a fan), but when the burger came, it was by far my least favorite. The patty was a little too thick, and so soft it was like eating a meat pillow. And almost no flavor at all. (The strawberry shake was delicious, though).

Landen and I were delicate little flowers who couldn’t get through any more burgers, but Bart and Adam both thought they could handle one more, so we ended the night with them splitting a bacon cheeseburger at Five Guys.

Bart had thought Five Guys was too greasy when we went in Boston, but this time, he declared it the best burger of the night. I desperately wanted to try that burger, but I was so full I couldn’t handle even one more bite. What a wimp.

It was a super fun date night and even now, almost a decade later, I still remember it so clearly. It is so different to compare burgers when you actually are eating them one after another, rather than weeks or months apart.

A few months later, we got together four or five couples and headed into downtown Austin to try burgers at another four locations.

Now, as part of our Year of Fun, PLUS living in a new state, you wouldn’t be wrong to guess that we have another one the books for this year! This time, we might even make score cards . . .

And then maybe an Ice Cream Hop.

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23 Comments

  1. Wow. Good idea. I could really get into this! I can think of 9 couples off the top of my head who would participate with us. Don't be shocked if you see a "burger hop" inspired post on my blog!

  2. Ha ha I love your "delicate little flowers" comment! It does sound like a fun night of adventure, and helpful for future decisions on where to eat.

  3. There is a new place in Quincy that you're definitely missing out on. It's called Wild Willy's and it AMAZING! I'll have to try the places you mentioned before we leave Boston, I love a good burger.

  4. One of the things I have to do when I'm in the States is eat a burger. Man, I really miss my burgers. The Dutch eat burgers too, but oh so differently. I still dream about a burger I once had at the Fog City Diner in San Francisco..

  5. This is a genius idea! How fun!

    I recently tried Five Guys for the first time and was very pleasantly surprised by how decent it was. (I normally stay far away from fast food burgers.)

    I think you guys need to come up with a strict rating system as well so that you can have a very scientific method of measuring burger quality. The Burger Quality Index, if you will.

  6. That is a fun idea. My favorite burgers are always the ones I make at home. I haven't really had one that I liked better. Spencer and I have thought of doing a similar thing with Thai food and a bunch of friends. We need to actually do it though.

  7. Do you watch How I Met Your Mother at all? Marshall goes on a best burger in New York spree. It's quite funny…but that's what this reminds me of. A good burger is an awesome thing. A good default one is the Whiskey River Burger at Red Robin. Delicious! Also Famous Daves has a really good one, too.

  8. This is fantastic! I’ve done this with milkshakes & donuts (separately, with a legit rubric) as summer fun with the kids. Annnnd, it absolutely prepared one for her science fair project. Totally winning right there.

  9. I remember when you posted about this years ago! Shortly after that I organized a double date burger crawl in DC. I couldn’t get the guys to split the burgers in 4, so we ended up cutting each burger in half and only made it to two places.

    Please post your results of a burger or any other type of crawl in Utah!

  10. Utah has really good burgers! My Utah favorite is B&G’s burgers on 1300 E in Salt Lake City. It’s right next to the U of U.

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