It seems as if there’s always a new joint popping up in New York City boasting the “best burger.” While a burger and a beer may sound like a match made in heaven, a well-made cocktail can pair just as perfectly with your meat patty. Here are the best bars for flipping burgers and shaking drinks at the same time. By Selena Ricks-Good.
See Also: NYC’s 10 Best Gastropubs
See Also: The Best Burgers In NYC
Since opening in 2006, DuMont Burger has been a popular stop on the beef patty trail for its buttery, rich burgers served on brioche buns. Although the restaurant has since moved into a smaller space, it’s still a satisfying spot for a burger and a drink. Choose from cocktails listed on an oversized chalkboard such as Sweet Water (Michter’s Rye, maple syrup and lemon juice) or the Afternoon Remedy (Junipero Gin, cucumber, basil and lime juice), or, if calories are no concern, go for one of the boozy milkshakes in lucious flavors such as White Russian and pumpkin pie.
Minetta Tavern’s Black Label Burger received a lot of hype when the bistro re-opened in 2009 under Keith McNally, partly due to its $26 price tag. Prime dry-aged beef including rib-eye and brisket topped with carmelized onions makes for one high-end American meal. Pair your ultimate comfort food with a refreshing cocktail such as the Rhubarb Sophie (42 Below Vodka, cucumber, agave nectar, rhubarb bitters and lime juice) or the Murray Sour (Yamazaki 12 Year Whisky, cardamom-infused agave nectar, lemon juice and orange juice).
Carroll Garden’s rustic meat-lovers’ destination churns out a popular half-pound Black Angus burger made with trimmings from its dry-aged steak ($18). Settle into the cozy tavern setting and pair your juicy burger with classic cocktails such as the Old Fashioned (rye whiskey, turbinado sugar and housemade Bartlett pear bitters), the Applejack Sazerac (bonded apple brandy, maple syrup, Peychaud’s Bitters and an absinthe rinse) or a cup of the daily punch.
The lamb burger has been a standout menu item at this British gastropub since it opened at the Ace Hotel in 2009. Since chef April Bloomfield is known for her burgers at Spotted Pig, this comes as no surprise. The Breslin’s version features a thick lamb patty, feta cheese and cumin mayo, served with thrice-cooked fries. Signature cocktails include a selection of gin and tonics, as well as specialty cocktails such as the Lifeline (cachaca, Green Chartreuse, fresh rosemary, lime juice and maple syrup) and the Surfer Rosa (rum, dry Olorosa Sherry, lime juice and artisanal grenadine).
Although the name of Daniel Boulud’s Bowery venture conjures images of NYC’s punk past, DBGB is a polished modern restaurant on a gentrified block. The lunch and dinner menus offer a range of burgers ($14-$19) featuring savory toppings such as pork belly and BBQ pulled pork. Wash down the buttery meaty goodness with crafty cocktails such as the Miami Weisse (orange-infused Bootlegger Vodka, lemon juice, ginger and Hefe-weizen) or the Pear Sidecar (Old Weller Bourbon, pear liqueur, lemon juice and rhubarb bitters).
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Selena Ricks-Good writes about drinks and produces events as The Dizzy Fizz.