Burgers, Cheeseburgers and stuff… Yes a website about Burgers.

Is there a Cheeseburger Capital of the World?

By • May 18th, 2009 • Category: Burger Blog

Some foods are so tied to a particular geographical place that the two become inseparable.  When you think “beer and brats,” your mind’s eye immediately hops a flight to Wisconsin.  If you want killer crabcakes, Maryland is the only place to be.  For legitimately spectacular barbecue, you can safely rule out about 46 states of the Union.  Southwestern food?  You have to be in the… well, you get the idea.  But where is the Cheeseburger Capital of the World?  Is there one???

I would argue that there is not.  I mean, everybody’s got a frickin’ cheeseburger on their menu.  It doesn’t take a road trip or much of a master plan to get one.  For many people, a cheeseburger is what you order from wherever you happen to be when you don’t have a taste for anything else.  It’s a default food.  There are 18 bizillion places to get a cheeseburger.  And yes, that means that about 17-and-a-half bizillion of them will be ho-hum patties slapped between the wrong kind of bun with an only-vaguely-cheeselike substance somewhere in between.

Cheeseburger Close Up

But that also means that a truly legendary cheeseburger could be just about anywhere.  Your odds of stumbling across a Top 5 Cheebie are just as good on the other side of town as they are on the other side of the country.  Hell, it can even come from your own backyard!  I’ll never be a real BBQ pitmaster or an accomplished pizzaiolo; I simply don’t have the equipment to pull that off.  But I love knowing that at any given moment, I’m less than 60 minutes away from pulling a damn fine cheeseburger off my own grill using what’s already in my kitchen.

The cheseburger is universally accessible.  And that’s why it’s the ultimate comfort food for me.

My name is Todd, and I’ve been invited to contribute to this site from time to time.  Am I somehow uniquely qualified as some sort of Doctor of Cheeseburgology?  Nope.  (Although I’ll bet that the course study for getting a ChZ would be way more fun than what you need to do to get a PhD.)  I’m just a regular guy who happens to believe that the bacon double cheeseburger is, in fact, nature’s most perfect food.

And while I don’t believe there is a true Cheeseburger Mecca, I feel like I live in a pretty good cheeseburger town.  Within a 30-minute drive of my suburban Atlanta home, there are several burgers that I would stack up against anything else out there.  I’ll introduce you to as many as I can in the coming weeks and months.  I’ll also document my minor successes and colossal failures in trying to perfect the humble cheeseburger on my own backyard grill.  I’ll venture out, sample burgers from wherever my travels take me, and report back to you dutifully.  And I always invite you to join the discussion.

The cheeseburger is something we all have in common, something we share as a whole.  It’s like the weather, the president, or American Idol.  Everybody has an opinion.  I’d love to hear yours.

So what was the best cheeseburger of your life?  I’ll share mine next time.

5 Responses to “Is there a Cheeseburger Capital of the World?”

  1. 1
    Annaliese Says:

    “Five Guys” no question. Burgers, hot dogs and fries are all they do. We live in a city where two burger places were featured as best in the US – Five Guys being the first, and Penguin being the second. I also like Backyard Burger, but those are two completely different tastes. The Bakyard Burger is grilled, as its name suggests. Five Guys has the greasy, hand-formed cheeseburgers with great toppings to choose from such as A1, fried onions, etc. Their ingredients also make their burgers exceptional.

  2. 2
    Raiders757 Says:

    Maryland, the only place to be for crabcakes? They do know their crabcakes up there, but what most of the country doesn’t realize, is that Virginia borders more of the Chesapeake Bay than Maryland does. The best seafood on the east coast is found in Virginia and North Carolina(which isn’t even near the Bay). Maryland can have their crabcake title, as they deserve it. I mean shit, they have crabcake shacks and liquor stores on every corner of the ghettos up there. Still, people do need to realize that a killer crabcake can be found anywhere on the Chesapeake Bay, not just in Maryland.

    I wouldn’t rule out 46 states in the union for great BBQ either. I’m a BBQ fanatic, and can tell you for sure, that great BBQ can be found all over the South, Mid-Atlantic and Mid-West.

    The cheeseburger capital of the world? Wouldn’t that go to Southern California, or are they just the burger capital with no cheese?

  3. 3
    G$ Says:

    Todd seems to have a good handle on this burger situation. I just came from one of the best that I’ve ever seen or eaten, just across the river from Georgetown, in suburban DC, at a place with no sign, and located in a strip shopping center, of sorts. It’s “Ray’s Hell Burgers”, and I must say that it is out of this world! We waited until the “lunch” crowd would have supposedly died down a bit, since seating is limited, but it was still swamped. No biggie, though, because it was DEFINITELY well worth it. If there’s any chance that you guys could send Todd up here, from his comfy Atlanta burbs, it would be an experience he would surely never forget. I have actually enjoyed the Vortex burger he so highly speaks of in Atlanta, and would agree that it is perhaps unbeatable. But, the one I just had at Ray’s Hell Burgers would give it a good run for the proverbial money for sure. Keep up the great work you are doing to enhance the understanding we burger-lovers share. You are the man.

  4. 4
    Burger Binger Says:

    I have traveled all over the United States (many times). I have not found a better burger city then San Antonio, Texas. Chris Madrid’s, Gourmet Burger Grill, Lord’s Kitchen, Big’z Burger Joint, Fatty’s Burgers & More, Chester’s, Longhorn Cafe, just to name a few. There is something for everybody’s taste, personally I like ….. …….. best! Then again, Culver’s (only chain on my list), well I guess I should not leave out In-N-Out Burger’s. I guess my wife is right when she says; all most every burger you eat I say I think this is my favorite, like the time we were in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and I had a burger at Bobcat Bite. Did I tell you the time I was in Kansas City ………..?

  5. 5
    NuklearKrisis Says:

    I know everyone is gonna go “WHAT” when I say this but I think one of the best cheeseburgers is the Double Western Bacon Cheese Burger from Carls Jr. Though you have to be in the mood for one, but I think really its the concept. As I have never found a joint that makes a real Western Bacon Cheese Bugie. Fast-Food joints all have that fast food quality about them, unlike a place that takes pride in their food and uses top notch ingredients, like the places people mention. So maybe one day I will stumble into some place and they will have “The Real Western Bacon Cheese Burger” on their menu.

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