Besides green chili, Denver burgers might be our city's best kept secret. You won't hear a lot of buzz about them, but no matter where you go, if a burger's on the menu, chances are it's a safe bet - if not a sure one.
But with all those good burgers, it can be hard figuring out which ones are most worthy of your time (and mouth). Here is an updated guide to our favorite burgers in town.
On weekdays during lunch, the patio and bar areas at Old Major transform into Royal Rooster. But don't let the secret identity distract you. All you need to know is that the double burger at the bottom of the menu is awesome. (And that the chicken sandwiches are also about as good as it gets around town.) Grab a few napkins and settle in.
A reliable neighborhood go-to no matter the occasion. Date night, big group, casual Wednesday... Park Burger never fails to satisfy. Most people know their way around the burgers, but you should also get to know the Blue Cheese Kettle Chips.
The Cricket still reigns supreme as Denver's best burger spot in our book. Nationally recognized, but year after year able to maintain its local feel. Green chili strips, swiss, cooked medium, and some fries and rings. That's basically our family prayer before dinner here.
Brother's has been one of Denver's best burger spots pretty much since the town was built. And not much beats seeing this wax paper-wrapped majesty atop its hand-held condiment basket headed your way when you're in the mood for a burger fix.
Hopdoddy Burger Bar
Since its opening just next door to the renovated Union Pacific train station, Hopdoddy has been slowly helping to make "Texas transplant" a bearable thought for Colorado natives (Hopdoddy originated in Austin). Headed to or from a Rockies game this summer? Stop by here and heave the Llano Poblano into your face, and maybe a boozy shake to wash things down.
Highland Tap and Burger
Highland Tap burgers are as fantastic as the atmosphere they're served in. One of the best spots in town no matter the time of day (or night) for a drink and a bite. Get a side of the kids mac and cheese (it's much better than the regular version), and watch the K-State folks in the bar area get rowdy when the Wildcats play.
The Nickel is a classier spot located inside the Teatro Hotel. The burger here is big and juicy, only available at lunch, and the grease stains you inevitably drip down your shirt are absolutely worth it... even if you do have to go back to work after you eat.
Federal Bar & Grill
If you need a place to unwind after work without any pretention, head here. High-class burgers and beers, in a laid-back sports dive. Kick back a few pints, eat a Juicy Lucy, and complain about your boss and his stupid face.
How to make any day better: clear your afternoon, peel off work around 2 p.m., and saunter up to the bar at LoHi or grab a spot on the patio. Order your favorite cocktail, then get the French Onion burger, and take your time. You're welcome.
Billy's sits a bit out of the way, but stop by and you'll see they still find plenty of ways to stand out, especially on the burger front. You might assume the Mexican options are your best play, and you won't necessarily be wrong. But the burgers will go above and beyond your expectations. They're huge, greasy, and damn good. And you can always get nachos or tacos as a starter.
Grandpa's Burger Haven
At first glance, you might find yourself a little hesitant when rolling up to Grandpa's, but stay strong. The experience that awaits you inside the dingy, divey stand is glorious. Order the #1 combo and have a seat outside to watch all the brilliance Federal Blvd. traffic (both motorized and foot) has to offer.