10 Unique Burgers in Jersey City to Try ASAP

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When Copenhagen’s world-famous fine dining restaurant Noma re-opened in late May after two months of closure due to COVID-19, one and only one food item was listed on its menu: a burger. Its chef-owner René Redzepi calls the burger the food “to heal.” Other celebrity chefs call burgers “the quintessential comfort food.” And we happily agree. 

But note — the joy of a good burger goes beyond the taste. There’s an association with eating outdoors with friends and family, especially in the USA. There’s the pleasure of getting your hands and face messy while diving into the dish — it’s the taste of summer. Fun as it may sound to eat a burger at the world’s most famous restaurant, there’s surely no need to fly across the ocean to enjoy a good patty and kick off a new season. Hoboken Girl has rounded up a list of Jersey City spots with unique burgers, as vetted by local residents.

S.P.B.B. Burger from Diesel and Duke {389 Monmouth Street}

diesel and duke grand reopening jersey city

This eclectic and cheerful burger joint is perfect for a classic “diner-style” burger — with patties smashed thin and cooked crisp on the edges. The buns are fluffy, the patties sizzling with fat – just the right bread-to-meat ratio. Yes, there is the old-fashioned “Standard” burger here at Diesel and Duke, which is just the way a good, honest burger should be. But the star of the menu is definitely the “S.P.B.B” Burger — topped with sriracha, peanut butter, and bacon. Unorthodox as it may sound, it is surely a flavor bomb.

Bankrupt Burger from Left Bank Burger {94 Newark Avenue}

{Photo credit: @lb_burgerbar}

It’s fun to try the different specialty burgers, with various combinations of cheese, relishes, and toppings that evoke the flavors of world cuisine. But a favorite among local customers is the “Bankrupt Burger” — a classic burger topped with mild cheese, briny pickles, and flavorful raw onions. With these simple ingredients, the flavors of the extremely savory patty taste even more complex. As George Motz, producer of the documentary Hamburger America once said, “A great burger should… taste completely of itself.”

Read More: Staying In? Here Are Restaurants Offering Delivery in Hoboken + Jersey City

Kangaroo Burger from Dark Side of the Moo {52 Bowers Street}

dark side of the moo

For someone with an adventurous palate, go to The Dark Side of the Moo for burgers made from “exotic” meat. Start from the more “familiar” choices such as bison and elk, which is lean and mild but still flavorful. Then proceed to the “gamey” yak and camel, with an intense, buttery taste. For something even less common and unique, get the kangaroo burger. It’s lean and sweet — not really a staple but definitely worth trying.

The White Star Burger from White Star Bar {179 Warren Street}

{Photo credit: @whitestarbar}

This is another go-to place among locals for classic “tavern-style” burgers. It is plump and juicy, with crispy char on the edges that gives way to a tender inside. The patty is excellent on its own, and to make it even better, it’s paired with buttery brioche buns from Balthazar and really crispy fries. Those who want a slightly fancier taste can also try the truffle burger, which is equally flavorful.

Cheeseburgers from White Mana {470 Tonnelle Avenue}

white mana diner nj

Don’t be fooled by White Mana’s low-key look on Tonnelle. The Jersey City diner actually dates back to 1939 when it opened as a pavilion in the World’s Fair. Its circular structure, with a round of narrow bar seats surrounding the kitchen in the middle, was then hailed at the fair as “the diner of the future.” Old fashioned as they look, the cheeseburgers  here {$1.99 each!}, paired with fried onions, dill pickle chips, and ketchup, are equal parts delicious and comforting. Plus, they are not made from processed mystery meat like those you get from chain restaurants. For decades, the diner has been frying 3,000 burgers in a {normal} week and according to Eater, the patties are still hand-patted from fresh ground meat.

Brickhouse Beef Burger from Paulie’s Brickhouse {264 Central Avenue}

{Photo credit: @pauliesbrickhouse}

This is another local favorite for a good quality tavern burger. The meat is sourced from Pat LaFrieda Meat Purveyors, the big-name butcher that has been supplying high-end NYC restaurants such as Eleven Madison Park and Minetta Tavern. No need for fancy toppings here—the dry-aged beef will shine on its own.

Da Blu Burger from Würstbar {516 Jersey Avenue}

As the name suggests, meat is the restaurant’s focus. The burger patty to order is made from Pat Lafrieda brisket blend. To give it just a little bit of a kick, choose the one topped with blue cheese, caramelized onion, and truffle aioli, and wash it down with really good craft beer.

Barrio Burger from Orale {341 Grove Street}

orale jersey city burger

{Photo credit: @oralemk}

Aside from all the other good stuff on the menu, the very loaded “Barrio Burger” at this local Mexican restaurant is phenomenal. Two plump patties and juicy pork belly are topped with aged cheddar and creamy aioli, and the rich flavor is cut by tart marinated onion and spicy serrano tartar sauce. It’s absolutely fun to eat, even if it means dealing with a food coma later.

See More: Your NEW Ultimate Guide to Outdoor Dining in Hoboken + Jersey City

The Buddy Burger from Buddy Whos {47 Washington Street}

One can tell from the egg-and-pancake-heavy menu that this little offbeat eatery is a good place for comfort food. And this is exactly how their burgers taste. The garnishes {sweet chili sauce, gouda cheese, and garlic mayo} brighten up the flavors but do not overwhelm the beefy taste of the patty. The more cholesterol-conscious can also try the tuna burger, with blackened tuna topped with avocado and wasabi aioli.

Dry-Aged Beef Burger from BurgerIM {2 Journal Square}

A new kid in town, this franchise just opened in Jersey City on May 22nd and is run by two local residents. In addition to its three beef options {Angus, dry-aged, Spanish-beef}, customers can also choose non-beef patties such as salmon, lamb, and falafel. Fries and milkshakes are also available on the menu.

Have you tried any of the burgers on this list? Let us know in the comments below!

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Written by:

Yiwei was born and raised in China. She has lived extensively in Beijing and Hong Kong, before finally settling down in New York. She moved to Hoboken after a few years in Westchester and immediately felt at home here. Two years ago, she left her job at an investment bank to travel the world and explore her interests, and has since then taken on a few freelancing gigs in career coaching, college admission consulting, and writing. When she is not wandering wildly in the streets of Europe, Asia, or Latin America, she can be found sipping an espresso in one of Hoboken's coffee shops or trying out restaurants in Hoboken and Jersey City area.


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