Sometimes you just need some grilled ground meat on a bun. With all the fixings, natch. Here are the best places to get a burger in Lancaster County.
Aussie and The Fox
The signature Aussie Burger is served on ciabatta with lettuce, tomato, pineapple, griddled-onion chutney, pickled beet, smoked Gouda and a fried egg. Cramming all those ingredients onto the bun makes for one tall burger. Best to eat this one open-face with a knife and fork, which is more in the spirit of this high-class burger anyway. One does not scarf the Aussie. It’s an upscale burger with an upscale price.
38 W King St, Lancaster, PA 17603
DJ’s Taste of the ’50s
A couple years back, DJ’s made USA Today’s list of 51 great burger joints in America, and it’s easy to see why. Stepping onto the checkerboard floor of this 1950s-themed diner is like walking back in time. The waitresses wear poodle-type skirts and bobby socks, the music pouring through the overhead speakers is pure period and the specialties are burgers, fries and shakes. The menu lists 21 varieties of burgers, but the “joint” in this burger joint is just as intriguing as the burgers.
2410 Old Philadelphia Pike, Lancaster, PA 17602
Four54’s best-selling burger is the Texas Burger – with pepper jack cheese, sweet onion marmalade, onion rings and applewood-smoked bacon on a grilled brioche bun – which made Thrillist.com’s list of the 16 best burgers in Pennsylvania. Four54 makes an exceptionally hearty, fresh burger that belongs in an elite class. The fries are great, too.
454 New Holland Ave, Lancaster, PA 17602
The philosophy of this trendy little spot on the outskirts of the city appears to be: “Concentrate on one thing and do it well.” The H-N-T Burger, the only one on the menu, costs $14, which is a lot for a burger, even with the fries. But it’s worth every penny. Served with bacon marmalade, Cabot cheddar and tomato ancho aioli on a brioche bun, the H-N-T burger is probably the best on this list. When you bite into it, you’ll understand.
920 Landis Ave, Lancaster, PA 17603
Trio Bar and Grill
Tucked back off the road halfway between Lancaster and Marietta, Trio is something of a hidden gem. It serves eight different burgers, including a Mac and Cheese Burger, an Ode to the Primanti Brothers (served on French fries and topped with cole slaw) and a Smokehouse Burger with barbecue sauce, bacon, pepper jack cheese and an onion ring. Best bet: the Southwest Burger, served with a chipotle aioli, cheddar cheese, a generous helping of fresh salsa, and jalapeños.
3707 Marietta Ave, Columbia, PA 17512
— Michael Long