Hamburger and french fries

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May 17, 2016

Best Burgers in San Francisco by Neighborhood

Ah yes, the burger, one of America’s beautiful staple food groups. San Francisco is one unique place and you can bet that we give unique twists to the burger while keeping its classic style. From messy to elegant, just be sure to order them all medium rare. The Hamburglar would be envious. 

Fisherman’s Wharf

In-n-Out (333 Jefferson St.)
Is an introduction really needed for this California legend?  Serving nothing but burgers and fries, this drive-in style joint is a Californian comfort food. Be sure to check out their not-so-secret menu, which includes the notorious 4x4, a smaller grilled cheese, and Neapolitan shake. Most Popular Burger: Double-Double, Animal Style Fries 

North Beach

Comstock Saloon (155 Columbus Ave.)
Comstock Saloon succeeds on its strength of fashionable cocktails, carefully crafted with soul. After surveying the drink menu and checking out the digs, forward your attention to the dinner menu where you will see the Comstock burger along with other great choices. Most Popular Burger: Comstock Burger

Sam’s (618 Broadway)
The next time you’re out partying in North Beach and get the munchies, mosey along to Sam’s on Broadway. No frills, just burgers; this hole-in-the-wall mini-diner will satisfy any drunken cravings until 3 a.m.; just make sure to bring cash. Most Popular Burger: Cheeseburger and Fries

Embarcadero/Financial District

Super Duper Burger (Multiple Locations)
For the price, not many can beat what Super Duper Burger offers. With numerous locations around Market Street and the Financial District, this is often a place people look forward to for lunch. Pair the juicy Super Duper Burger or Chicken Sandwich with garlic fries and wash it all down with a cold beer or an old-fashioned milk shake. Most Popular Burger: Super Duper Burger

SOMA/Yerba Buena

Garaje (475 Third St.)
Garaje is not for everyone, but everyone is welcome.  Boasting "no crap on tap," their food menu does not look half bad either with their signature Zapato which is a pani-rrito (panini + burrito).  But we’re here to talk about burgers and Garaje definitely does not disappoint with their old-style patty with perfectly melted cheese and lofty bun.  Wash it all down with an extensive list of beers or classic bottled sodas.  Cash only. Most Popular Burger: Drive in Cheeseburger (Try Crazy Dave’s Double; it’s like an evolved In-n-Out Double Double)

Marlowe (500 Brannan St.)
We could not talk about the best burger in San Francisco without mentioning the Marlowe Burger. Its Niman Ranch patty mixed with lamb slathered with horseradish aioli, cheddar cheese and crisp bacon, is absolutely a must-try. Start off the meal with Brussel sprout chips or roasted bone marrow before digging into arguably the best burger of San Francisco. Not convinced? Just ask Michael Bauer, a veteran editor for the San Francisco Chronicle. He wrote a nice piece here. Most Popular Burger: Marlowe Burger

Union Square

The Cavalier (360 Jessie St.)
If Marlowe is out of the way, the same owners feature their prized burger at The Cavalier.  Hotel Zetta’s British-themed brasserie delivers gastro pub bites and colonial cocktails in clubby digs. Most Popular Burger: Marlowe Burger

Mission District

Mission Bowling Club (3176 17th St.)
Go for bowling; stay for the food. This is a great place for happy hour fun and very happy dining afterwards. This may be the best food experience at a bowling alley. Most Popular Burger: Mission Burger

Trick Dog (3010 20th St.)
Trick Dog is basically a bar, and that’s the tricky part. With its Scotch eggs, The Trick Dog (their hotdog-shaped burger), and thrice-cooked fries, you could hardly tell. This fusion cocktail bar will have you coming back. Most Popular Burger: Trick Dog

Castro/Noe Valley

Hi Tops (2247 Market St.)
Say hi to the folks at Hi Tops.  This friendly LGBT (that's also straight friendly) sports bar is the place to be, with weekly specials including 25 cent wings and trivia nights. Most Popular Burger: Bacon-Beef Burger

Civic Center/Hayes Valley

Alta Ca (1420 Market St.)
This restaurant puts dining in a whole new experience.  With exceptional craftsmanship and creativity, Alta Ca makes us want to try one of everything on the menu. Most Popular Burger: Hamburger


Nopa (560 Divisadero St.)
The mix of rustic touches and urban cool makes Nopa a great gathering place; so great that you will most likely need a reservation.  Nopa is an advocate of sustainable dining, which leads them to have their own bee hives on the rooftop of their restaurant. Most Popular Burger: Wood Grilled Burger

Nob Hill

Mason Pacific (1358 Mason St.)
In the heart of Nob Hill lies Mason Pacific, a casual yet elegant neighborhood bistro. You will need to make a dinner reservation for this Italian-American restaurant. They also do a great job incorporating some Asian flavors.  Most Popular Burger: Mason Pacific Burger (Joe’s Special)

Marina/Pacific Heights

Roam (1785 Union St.)
Would you like bison or elk in your burger?  Roam presents their interesting selection of burger meats with different delicious styles. If meat isn’t your thing, their veggie burger is quite good. Most Popular Burgers: Heritage, Tejano, and Sunnyside styles


Presidio Social Club (563 Ruger St.)
All the comforts of a club without the dues, this ex-military barracks is a great place for two or a venue for large groups.  Be sure to check this out after a day in the Presidio. Most Popular Burgers: PSC Hamburger

Bernal Heights

Bernal Star (410 Cortland Ave.)
If you go to Bernal Star, it might look familiar to you. That's because Bernal Star is the former home of beloved neighborhood joint, Liberty Cafe. Bernal Star continues the tradition of being a neighborhood spot with the serving of brunch, burgers and brews. On top of all that, they have a daily burger happy hour from 4 pm to 6 pm. Most Popular Burgers: BStar Burger (Wild boar, truffle aioli, sautéed mushrooms, grilled onion)


B&J ¼ lb Burgers (6202 Third St.)
Be sure to check out B&J ¼ lb burgers in the Bayview, a quick ride on the T-Third streetcar. This breakfast and burger joint will cook up a classic American burger in no time. Most Popular Burgers: Bacon Cheese Burger.

Photo by Alpha / CC BY-SA

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