Best Hamburger

Quarry House Tavern
8401 Georgia Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20910, (301) 587-8350

Y’all can talk till you’re blue in the face about how great the burger is at Palena or Westend Bistro or even Central Michel Richard. All I can say is: They damn well oughta be for the price you pay. My ideal burger doesn’t come with truffled cheese or potato tuiles or on pretzel buns. My ideal ground-beef sandwich is just a well-grilled patty, topped with the classic condiments, and pressed between toasted buns. And it sure as hell doesn’t cost more than $10, even with the mandatory side of something fried and starchy. The burger at Quarry House Tavern has seemingly divided more people than the recent elections in Kenya. There are those who still swear by the pre–Jackie Greenbaum patty at QH, a greasy land mass of ground chuck that truly was a great sandwich. But once Greenbaum and her partner, Patrick Higgins, bought the historic tavern and installed Toure Stoney in the kitchen, I quickly became a fan of the chef’s juicy, peppery organic hamburger. When Stoney left, however, the burger fell into disgrace, often little more than a gray, overgrilled slab of meat on a bun. But over the last few months, QH has nailed its burger once again. The thick patty arrives with a nice char but beautifully moist and red in the middle. It has heft. It oozes flavor and juices. It comes with a basket of crunchy tater tots. It can be paired with some of the best microbrews in the world. From any angle you look at it, Quarry House offers the ultimate burger experience.

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