Best of Denver

The Ten Best Locally Owned Burger Bars in Denver

Denver is brimming with burger bars.
Denver is brimming with burger bars. Courtesy of 5280 Burger Bar

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click to enlarge The burger and condiment caddie at My Brother's Bar is one of Denver's most familiar sights. - WESTWORD
The burger and condiment caddie at My Brother's Bar is one of Denver's most familiar sights.
Westword

My Brother's Bar

2376 15th Street
303-455-9991
mybrothersbar.com

Yes, My Brother’s Bar has a fascinating history that stretches back to the 1870s and encompasses Neal Cassady and the Beat Generation. But Denver denizens come for burgers and beers — and good conversation from the bartenders and servers. Natives will argue about which is better, the JCB (that's jalapeño cream cheese to you noobs), the cheesier Johnny Burger or the original, unadulterated Steerburger. Whichever you choose, don't expect a classy presentation (not even a plate!), but be sure to include a mixed basket of fries and onion rings.

click to enlarge Park Burger is Denver's go-to neighborhood burger bar. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
Park Burger is Denver's go-to neighborhood burger bar.
Danielle Lirette

Park Burger

Mulitple Locations
parkburger.com

Park Burger is one of Denver's favorite neighborhood burger joints; from the original on South Pearl Street and the newer outposts in Highland, RiNo and Hilltop. Good value and a few fun topping combos are the signatures here, with the Royale (grilled onions, bleu cheese and bacon), the Croque (ham, Swiss and a fried egg) and the Chilango (cheddar, jalapeños and guacamole) as standouts. But the traditional Park Burger or even the quarter-pound Mini Park Burger are perfect for purists.

Snarfburger is coming to Denver from Boulder. - WESTWORD
Snarfburger is coming to Denver from Boulder.
Westword

Snarfburger

2000 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder, 303-444-7711
2535 Federal Boulevard, 720-535-5184
1001 East 11th Avenue, 720-573-9134
snarfburger.com

Jimmy Seidel, who founded the Snarf’s sandwich chain in 1996, says he liked to cook burgers for his employees “just for fun, and they loved them, and I kinda always wanted to give a burger place a shot.” So in 2013, he turned a former barbecue shack in Boulder into the first Snarfburger, and “now I’m in the sandwich-and-burger business,” says Seidel. Snarfburger is a casual spot that emphasizes basic burgers with the same delicious, humorous twists that have become a hallmark of Snarf’s.

Tap & Burger

Highland, 2219 West 32nd Avenue, 720-287-4493
Sloan's Lake, 1565 Raleigh Street, 720-456-6779
Belleview, 4910 S Newport Street, 720-583-1367
tapandburger.com

The burgers at this trio are hefty and juicy, ranging from the classic Shroom Luvas to the slightly overboard house burger, piled with smoked pulled pork, a thick-cut onion ring and two kinds of cheese. Add-ons like a fried egg or a luxurious slab of foie gras turn the basic burger into an all-out dining experience. Tap & Burger doesn't stop at standard ground cow; for something different, go with lamb, turkey, grass-fed beef or a meatless Impossible burger. Note: The Belleview Station Tap & Burger will be temporarily closed until Level Red dining room restrictions are lifted.

The Truffle Shuffle, made with Angus beef, mushrooms, swiss cheese, truffle aioli and truffle chips, is one of the fancier creations at TAG Burger Bar. - COURTESY TAG BURGER BAR
The Truffle Shuffle, made with Angus beef, mushrooms, swiss cheese, truffle aioli and truffle chips, is one of the fancier creations at TAG Burger Bar.
Courtesy TAG Burger Bar

TAG Burger Bar

1222 Madison Street
303-736-2260
tagburgerbar.com

If you want a chef-caliber burger, leave it to a chef. Troy Guard brought his burgers to the Congress Park neighborhood in 2012, offering a fun, modern take on beef between buns. The burgers are highly configurable, with starter sets coming in at under $10 (for the TAG Classic or the Old School) and ranging up to $13 for the Wild West bacon burger and the Magic Dragon bison burger. Don't miss the duck-fat fries and Guard's iconic fried pickles. Note: After November 22, TAG Burger Bar will be closed until December 2, and then will reopen for outdoor dining, takeout and delivery.
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Mark Antonation is the former Westword Food & Drink Editor. In 2018, he was named Outstanding Media Professional by the Colorado Restaurant Association; he's now with the Colorado Restaurant Foundation.
Contact: Mark Antonation