Not for nothing is Fort Worth known as Cowtown. Where’s the best place to get a burger? That depends on whom you ask. Saddle up for this guide to Fort Worth's burger scene.
They may be the new kid in town when it comes to burgers, it’s true. The beef in all three burgers, including the Truffle burger with house-made three onion jam and truffle butter is aged on site. If you’re feeling a little more traditional, the Butcher Shop burger is a glorious combo of white cheddar and Applewood-smoked bacon on top of the patty.
Charley's was an underdog last year in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram readers’ choice Battle of the Burgers. The little shop on Granbury Road has been serving burgers, onion rings and tater tots for two generations. Try the Project X (tabasco cooked into the patty, which is topped with jalapeños, onions and a generous slab of cheddar cheese).
There’s no hyperbole at Dutch’s Legendary Hamburgers. Your choice of one of a dozen burgers comes on a soft, slightly sweet fresh bakery roll. The avocado spread on the Texana burger is a nice, fresh touch. And although it’s not traditional (and it’s a little messy to eat), the Country Fried Dutch (a beer-battered beef patty swathed in tasty white gravy atop sourdough toast) is great for a cheat day.
Fred’s Texas Café
Fred's used to be the only restaurant over by what is now Crockett Row, and the place still stands out in a crowd. I’m a fan of the Fred Melt: a classic patty melt with American cheese in between thick slabs of grilled Texas toast. If you’re feeling adventurous, the Serrano burger has peppers mixed into the meat, and comes topped with grilled onions, Oaxaca cheese and lime mayo.
If you’re stomping around the Stockyards, Hookers Grill is one of your better dining values. Menu choices are pretty spare – single or double patty (or steak burger); fried or raw onions, and a few more exotic topping choices, like a fried egg, bacon, cheese or jalapeños. But that tiny patio stays crowded for a reason!
Hopdoddy offers freshly baked buns, hormone-free beef, and a killer happy hour special where their sublime parmesan truffle fries are a steal. For sheer variety, the Austin-based chain’s 13 burgers pretty much takes the cake. Try the Elvis burger (Applewood-smoked bacon, IPA-infused peanut butter, Tillamook cheddar, and banana on your Angus patty).
Kincaid's began as a grocery store with a meat market in the 40s, and the burger shop remains as one of the links to Fort Worth’s past. Again, there’s nothing fancy here, just half-pound burgers that you can fancy up “Cowtown style” (with grilled onions and jalapeños), or with cheese, bacon or chili.
M&O offers a dozen burgers, and each one sounds better than the last. The little restaurant in what’s now The Foundry District has been slinging burgers in a diner-like setting for two decades.
For quantity, Rodeo Goat’s menu list wins the burger wars, with 21 different exotic burgers including veggie and chicken. The Red Headed Stranger Quinoa burger is exceptionally tasty with its little dollop of spinach mayo. But when I’m feeling my goats, I like the Sugar burger – candied bacon, grilled peaches, and a spicy-sweet jalapeño jam. There’s also a unique-to-Fort-Worth Cowboy Murrin (BBQ sauce, jalapeños and a bunch of other stuff) named for everyone’s favorite Northside legend.
With 20 burgers on the menu Shaw’s Patio Bar & Grill gives Rodeo Goat a run for their money. I’m a fan of the Memphis burger, with creamy, crunchy coleslaw, Jack cheese, pickles and a sweet tang of BBQ sauce. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, all the burgers are half-price when you dine in!
You might know it as the home of the Black Forest Uncake, but Swiss Pastry Shop is also home to some amazing burgers. Beef from Japanese Akaushi cattle raised in Texas has a higher percentage of monounsaturated fat (as opposed to saturated fat usually found in beef) and is higher in oleic acid – the heart-healthy chemical found in products like olive oil. So enjoy that EIEIO burger (with bacon, cheddar, and a fried egg) safe in the knowledge that you’re consuming a better red meat!
Little Red Wasp is the younger, slightly louder sister to Grace. There’s only one burger on the menu, but it’s a delicious goopy mess of sharp cheddar cheese and Wasp sauce cradled between fluffy potato buns.
While The Capitol Grille only offers one true burger on the menu (a decadently luxurious blend of ground brisket, short rib, and chuck topped with cheddar), the Lobster and crab burger is also worthy of inclusion in this list.
Magnolia & More
Magnolia Ave. is home to three restaurants that don’t specifically feature burgers, but have a pause-worthy patty or two on the menu. Lilli’s Bistro, its cousin The Lazy Moose (co-owned by the owners of Lilli’s and Shaw’s) and Cat City Grill are all worth a sample.