The Best Burger in Vancouver? You make the call!


Is it just me, or has Vancouver undergone a burger renaissance in recent years?

It seems like not too long ago, hamburgers were pretty much strictly fast food fare.  You’d get your Big Mac or Whopper – with a hockey puck patty that had been frozen for who knows how long – and that was it.  No one thought of burgers as gourmet.  Fresh beef was unheard of.

Now, suddenly, everything has changed in Vancouver.  Dozens of chain and independent restaurants are serving deluxe burgers made with fresh beef and served on artisan buns.  It’s truly the golden age of the hamburger in Vancouver. There are almost too many choices. Which is why I’d like to hear from you:

Who makes Vancouver’s best burgers, the ones with the tastiest beef and best toppings?  Share your pick by leaving a comment below.

But first, a little background: How did this whole burger renaissance start and what exactly makes a great burger?

Vancouver Sun columnist Randy Shore had a great article recently about Vancouver’s burger roots.

Apparently, the granddaddy of the movement is Vera’s Burger Shack, which opened its original beach location back in 1977.  Believe it or not, way back then Vera’s was using fresh beef and serving hand-cut fries.  With a dozen locations in the Lower Mainland today, Vera’s hasn’t changed a thing, except for adding hipper toppings like blue cheese and jalapenos. Here’s a YouTube video taken at Vera’s:

But wait a second . . . true burger historians might insist on going back even further.   Iconic B.C. chain White Spot, which uses 100-percent fresh Canadian AAA beef, has been serving up burgers and fries in Vancouver since 1928, predating even McDonalds.

Relative newcomers on the gourmet/fresh burger scene in Vancouver include chains Fatburger, 5 Guys Burgers & Fries and Splitz, as well as independent restaurants Moderne Burger and Romer’s (both in Kitsilano).

In the end, making a great burger doesn’t exactly appear to be rocket science.  It seems to come down to using fresh beef and cooking burgers to order.  Great toppings – local cheeses, fresh lettuce and tomatoes, apple wood bacon, etc – also go a long way.  And, of course, the bun is critical.   These days, flimsy, flavourless, store-bought buns just don’t make the cut.   A gourmet burger demands a fresh-baked bun that won’t crumble or soak through and sabotage your eating experience.

So what’s your pick?  If you’ve got a favourite burger joint in Vancouver, please leave a comment below.


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39 Responses to The Best Burger in Vancouver? You make the call!

  1. I like Urban Burger on Davie for price and taste. Can’t beat a deal like their combo.

  2. Mark

    have you heard of Hamburger Disco?

  3. Amanda

    Habit on Main St has a delicious local beef and pork burger. And for an extra dollar you can add blue cheese… so good!

  4. Steven

    Stackhouse Burger is really good. It’s on Granville near Davie

    • David Hill

      Hi, I was very disappointed at StackHouse — the bun was 2 times the size of the burger, it was kind of red inside and to top if off a few hard pieces of fat I was very turned off and will never return, I couldnt believe the cooked asked me how was my burger (?)

  5. Dave

    Vera’s anyday

  6. Ira

    Save on Meats on Hastings just re-opened. Amazing burger there.

  7. Onur

    ‘Nevermind’ on West 4 and Blenheim has also pretty good burgers!

  8. Bec

    StackHouse on Granville near Davie have awesome veggie burgers, and The Famous Warehouse on Granville at Nelson have the BEST works burger :D

  9. Graham

    The Burger @ La Brasserie on Davie really redefines and elevates the burger experience. It’s a must taste to understand kinda thing. Romer’s on 4th offers an outstanding burger as well, but in both cases these are above the $17.00 mark, so you gotta think outside the burger box.

    Vera’s doesn’t do it for me, Urban Burger on Davie works great for a cheap and cheerful, good quality, good tasting burger, and the White Spot burgers are perfect for a late night, after the bar pick up on the way home.

  10. Barb

    Romer’s, for sure. That Brioche bun just notches it up over the rest.

  11. Diana

    Moderne Burger. Hands down. Best fries too.

  12. Dianna

    I definitely like the Jimmy’s Special and the Spicy burger with mushrooms and mozza at Jimmy’s Place Restaurant in Coquitlam. It’s a diner that’s tucked into the corner in the same plaza as where the Petcetera and Extra Foods are so not many people know it’s there, but the burgers are so juicy with loads of sauce. It’s a bonus that I live close by so I don’t have to drive out to Vancouver for a decent burger. :)

  13. For the best burger’s in ‘Vancouver’ you have to go outside, to White Rock, Uli’s! The 2.0. Manifique!

  14. Justin

    Save-On-Meats burger was a delicious helping of greasy goodness. Haven’t gone since it’s been renovated, but hoping they haven’t messed with the original.

  15. Crave on Main has some pretty darn good burgers! Add some extra cheese and back bacon….it’s AMAZING!

    Pretty affordable too considering it’s at Crave.

  16. Elizabeth

    Fat Burgers with fries & gravy are awesome but on the expensive side unless you go on the day of a sale.

    Bons off Broadway has a great burger meal

    The Freightliner burger meal at Big Six diner in Burnaby is huge & cheap.

  17. Simon

    The Brasserie Burger @ La Brasserie on Davie is the most delicious and beautiful burger I have ever had. Just google pictures of it. Everything on their menu is great, but that burger is so good I once split one for desert. The truffle aioli and star anise ketchup, made in-house, really help take it to another level.

  18. Sarah

    I L.O.V.E Romer burger… every burger I have tried has been very tasty and the option to replace the burger bun with a lettuce bun suits me! If you have chance try their Raspberry Wheat Ale beer ice-cream float, a delightful combination.

  19. Michele

    La Brasserie — absolument!!

  20. Mike Cheswick

    Hamburger Mary’s in the Davie Village is pretty good :)

  21. steve

    Romers Burger Bar ROCKS…love the one with the braised short-rib and Gorgonzola sauce…the buns are great tooo. oh ya and once you finish the burg… try the mini donut and tri-dippin-sauce dessert…tdf :)

  22. Scott

    Vera’s cantor burger with a fried egg, the only burger place wher you can get fried salami. Lots of wannabes only one IS

  23. Alex

    I’d take a Chicken Burger at Burrard Bridge Bar ANYDAY!

  24. Gary

    Vera’s burgers are the best

  25. Romers is probably the top spot but 5 guys has the best burger worth driving for. It’s mentioned in the article but maybe of the comments are downtown focused, head out to West Van or White Rock and you won’t regret it.

    White Spot is still a great spot as well

  26. Khurram

    Vera’s is the best hands down, I wash my burger down with a poutine!! Nothing like it. Btw does anyone else have fried salami!! The cantor burger, GAME OVER

  27. Frank

    Well, anyone feels like venturing out to New Westminster. Moonrakers Pub has great burgers. For the true Vancouverites, I like both Romer’s and Vera (the Frank).

  28. splitz is my all-time favourite!!

  29. Jen

    Modern Burger is the BEST in the city. The ingredients are basic and fresh. The diner is charming, the staff delightful and the milkshakes are divine!

  30. Kate

    Vera’s, fresh burgers are the way to go, but I always take mine home too que them up there

  31. Bob

    My top 3 burgers in vancouver are:

    1) Boston Pizza
    2) Fish House
    3) Monk Mcqueens

    • Bob

      I have to update my top 3. Cross them all off. Boston pizza has gone downhill. The fish house has changed their burger for the worse and Monk’s shut down.

  32. Jenny

    My 2 favorites are La Brasserie on Davie and The Red Onion in Kerrisdale. Both use quality ingredients –from meat to veggies and cheeses.

  33. Trax

    I have hunted burgers around Vancouver for the past two years. Among my favourites are Romers and The Red Onion but recently I have grown fond of the burger at reFuel.

    A pure chuck patty cooked to your liking (I prefer medium-medium rare). Add to the equation house made Bacon and properly aged cheese and it’s a combination worth experiencing.

    • Thanks for the tip on reFuel: I like the idea of having something as basic as a burger in a setting where the cuisine is so cutting-edge.

  34. jon

    you have to try the burger at HousexGuest Amazing with Crab Tarter Tots instead of fries.

  35. cnintheCity

    For me, a good burger is only really great if you can order it medium rare which means they grind the meat in house – otherwise you could be eating Costco ground meat and well done. Sometimes that’s ok, i.e. Whitespot is a great burger but it’s not about the meat.
    ReFuel and Pourhouse both grind their meat and the burger is about the meat.
    Of the 2 Pourhouse is consistently great and, the fries are always perfect – served in a paper bag.
    Stackhouse and Romers charge a lot for their burgers, but they don’t measure up to these others. Do try them.

  36. Jo

    Been lookin high n low for de best an jus had it las nite @ the locker room @ kings way and 12th I think!