Today is the beginning of Cincinnati Burger Week (July 20-26), and as a die-hard burger lover, I am READY. As a foodie in Cincinnati, there’s nothing more exciting than an epic week long of $5 burgers at some of the best local restaurants in town! If you’re new to Cincinnati’s food scene, or just curious, I have outlined my top burgers in town, and the places that I am most excited to try.Remember, this is a marathon, not a sprint…There are over 20 places on the list, and we won’t be able to eat at all of them (that would be a burger for 3 meals a day, which, while it sounds appealing now….I’m not sure my metabolism could keep up), but we should definitely hit up the highlights.
For more information, I’m providing a link to the Yelp reviews for all of these spots. If you are looking for my reviews, you should check out my Best Burgers in Cincinnati List on Yelp. Happy eating fellow foodies!
Best Classic Burger: Arthur’s of Hyde Park
Arthur’s has been a neighborhood staple of Hyde Park (my home!) for over half a century. This place is the real-deal, old school dive bar. And they’re known for their burgers, especially for burger madness on Sundays and Mondays. If you are looking for a perfectly cooked, juicy burger piled high with all of your favorite unique toppings (my favorite is the California Cobb with blue cheese, bacon, and avocado), then Arthur’s should be your go-to spot. Bonus: All of their beers on tap are local!
Best Innovative Burger: Nation Kitchen and Bar
Nation just opened up in the Pendleton neighborhood of OTR a couple of months ago, but it is already making a splash in the OTR competitive food scene. They have very unique burgers here, and they’re not afraid to try new things. Their Burger Week $5 special is the quesadilla burger, with beef, queso, pepper jack, pico de gallo, and lettuce all rolled up in a tortilla and then pressed like a quesadilla. My fiance ordered it the last time we were there, and it was fantastic! Definitely a unique spin on the burger. Don’t forget to get it with a side of their loaded fries or tater tots. I particularly like their poutine!
Yes, unfortunately I have not tried either MOTR or The National Exemplar yet. It’s a travesty, I know. MOTR is a dive-bar and a great local music venue if you’re looking for a punk rock show in OTR. The National Exemplar is essentially the opposite, and it is a classy American restaurant known for their brunch. I can’t wait to try both and reporting back to you all on their burgers!
Honorable Mention – Best Place to Take a Tourist for a Burger: Terry’s Turf Club
Unfortunately Terry’s is not on the list for Cincinnati’s Burger Week, so they are not offering a $5 burger, but I would be remiss if I did not mention them in a list of best burgers in Cincy…Terry’s is famous in Cincinnati, thanks in a large part to being featured on Diner’s Drive-Ins and Dives on the Food Network. Guy Fieri loved this place, and for good reason…Terry’s is a small dive (only enough room for about 40 people) with tons of neon signs all around and a unique burger menu. They are known for their “build-your-own-burger” menu with tons of toppings to choose from. The reason I say that this is a tourist trap is because the prices are too high, the line is too long, and the quarters are a little too cramped for a true local to go here very often for their burgers (that’s why I prefer Arthur’s). But there is truly no other place like Terry’s in Cincinnati, and it is a must see if you’ve never been here before.