The best burgers with and without meat on O’ahu

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This article was originally published in May 2019. It was updated on June 21, 2021.

And Al Burger

$ 17 at Et Al

It’s the combination of local beef, cooked just right, with bacon, cheddar, the sweetness of Maui onion confit and the jump of jang sauce, all in one big, juicy and satisfying bite. Burgers aren’t supposed to be part of my diet, so I’m going to order Et Al’s, cut it into quarters, swallow just one and pass the plate around, collecting parts of other people’s lunch in return. Work for me! –Mari Taketa, editor-in-chief of digital catering

$ 17, 4210 Wai’alae Avenue, (808) 732-2144, etalhawaii.com, @etalhawaii


SEE ALSO: First Look: Foodland Et Al’s Chic New Restaurant in Kāhala


Wagyu Umami Burger

$ 21 from Merriman’s Honolulu

I’m not usually a fan of specialty burgers. With the concept often put before the performance, the whole is generally not greater than the sum of its parts. Merriman’s Honolulu’s Wagyu Umami Burger is different. It reads rich on the menu, but it’s the balance between its trendy elements that earns it my top spot. A half pound wagyu beef patty is topped with sautéed mushrooms with herbs and garlic, melted gruyere, baby arugula, truffle aioli and pickled onions on a homemade kaiser bun . The galette has a nice crust on the edges of which the salty pieces burst against the truffle aioli. The echo of the mushrooms of the earth is deepened by a light funk of the cheese to be raised by tangy onions and anchored by a bitter finish. The homemade bun is important for maintaining its structural integrity, another of my metrics. While this burger is an absolute flavor bomb, it’s not death by wealth – and it keeps this specialty burger at the top of my list. –Maria Burke, editor-in-chief of digital catering

1108 Auahi Street, # 170, merrimanshawaii.com, @merrimanshonolulu


SEE ALSO: New Daily Happy Hour at Merriman’s Honolulu features fried shrimp, poke, taro hummus and signature cocktails


Cheeseburger DLX

$ 8.95 from Liliha Bakery

Photo: Thomas Obungen

I love a crispy smash burger as much as the next burger lover, but when I think of a luxury cheeseburger, Liliha Bakery comes to mind. Freshly baked buns, layers of cold iceberg lettuce, sweet pickles and a big Angus honkin ‘beef patty make it feel like it’s handcrafted, but that’s how the chicks and tatas at Liliha Bakery make it up. burgers for generations. Whether it’s 3 a.m. or 3 p.m., it’s the burger that lets you know you’ll be okay. –Thomas Obungen, dining room editor

Several locations, lilihabakery, com, @lilihabakery


Double down

$ 11 from the Daley

The Daley's Favorite Burger

Photo: Katrina Valcourt

I try to go to the Daley at least once a month to satisfy my burger cravings, which are serious – I need the double stack of grass-fed Kaua’i patties smothered in a special sauce, onions and American cheese, super crispy edges of La Tour’s incredibly soft potato bun. No matter how many times I get this no-fuss burger, I want more. –Katrina Valcourt, editor-in-chief

1110 Nu’uanu Avenue, thedaleyburger.com, @thedaleyburger


SEE ALSO: We Tried The Entire Menu At Daley In One Sitting


The Moka Java Burger

From $ 11.33 at Honolulu Burger Co.

Honolulu Burger Co

Photo: Katie Kenny

Honolulu Burger Co. specializes in locally grown grass-fed beef burgers that can be customized from simple meat to buns to eclectic options that include an Aloha Elvis with banana apple, peanut butter, bacon and guava jam. . (There’s also a vegetarian Beyond Meat plant-based burger as a protein choice.) We liked the Mocha Java Burger with a little Kona coffee friction, a little warmth of a Latin mole sauce, and the smoothness of it. ‘a fresh avocado. We chose pickles instead of red onions and paid a quarter more for the taro roll, and the slightly sweet purple roll turned out to be a nice backdrop. We ordered online and the burger was cooked exactly as ordered, pink in the middle for medium. In addition to the Beretania Store, the company regularly hosts pop-ups on Thursday evenings at the Kailua Farmers Market, Fridays 10:30 am to 1:30 pm at the Central Pacific Bank Building (220 S. King St.), and Saturday mornings. at the KCC farmer’s market.—Robbie Dingeman, Editor-in-Chief

1295 S. Beretania Street, (808) 626-5202, honoluluburgerco.com, @honoluluburgerco


SEE ALSO: Best of Honolulu 2020: Best Food and Drink on O’ahu


Hamburger Royal

$ 5.25 from W&M Bar-BQ Burgers

As soon as you step out of the car in W & M’s tiny parking lot, your mouth starts salivating over the smell of burgers (in his signature teriyaki barbecue sauce) sizzling on the grill – mmmm. I always go for the classic royal burger, stacked with crunchy lettuce, a juicy slice of tomato, onion, and melted cheese (yes cheese, even if it’s called a burger), plus a schmear of everything. W&M (mayo, mustard, ketchup and relish) dressing. The bun is wonderfully soft and not too thick. And I like that it’s not ginormous – it’s filling but leaves just enough room for a side of crispy, salty fries. Just keep them out of reach when you get home, otherwise they’ll be gone before you hit the front door!—Brie Thalmann, Fashion Editor-in-Chief

3014 Wai’alae Avenue, (808) 734-3350


The Tavern Burger

$ 21 from the cattle tavern

It’s the luscious but understated burger of your dreams, quite capable of turning you into a paleo savage after the first bite, but just enough fancy – and structurally designed – not to splash your hipster shirt, chin and mustache. of juice and gore. This burger, with bacon-onion marmalade, gruyère, curly cheese and tomato on brioche, is available for lunch and dinner. And if you don’t have a mustache, great!—Don Wallace, Editor-in-Chief

49 N. Hotel St., (808) 537-2577, cattle tavern.com, @livestocktavern


SEE ALSO: 36 Gourmet Comfort Foods in Hawai’i That Will Warm Your Heart & Soul


The impossible hamburger

From $ 19 at The Counter

The impossible hamburger

Photo: Aaron K. Yoshino

OK, this is not a real burger. But when I started doing a personal comparison of Impossible Burger last year, The Counter’s version was my favorite. Not only can you make this meatless, meat-like patty medium (it’s pink in the middle! How is that?), But you can also stack all your other cravings, grilled red onions and the avocado has a fried egg on top. Plus, fried dill pickles. What else could you want? –Christi Young, Editorial Director

Kāhala Shopping Center, 4211 Wai’alae Avenue, (808) 739-5100, thecounter.com, @thecounterburger


SEE ALSO: The 6 Best Grilled Cheese Sandwiches on O’ahu


The Burger Counter

From $ 15 at The Counter

I can be a picky eater so The Counter is my favorite because I can customize my burger to my heart’s content! My favorite creation would be an all-natural beef burger on a brioche bun with applewood smoked bacon, lettuce, garlic aioli sauce (when I’m feeling adventurous) and a side of sweet potato fries. .—Dayni Watanabe, Former Account Coordinator

Kāhala Shopping Center, 4211 Wai’alae Avenue, (808) 739-5100, thecounter.com, @thecounterburger


SEE ALSO: Penny’s Malasadas in Lā’ie and Kahuku Fry the lightest Malassadas on the island


50s burger

$ 9 of Chubbies Burgers

The Chubbies 50s Burger is my perfect classic patty. Use both hands to eat and keep plenty of napkins on hold.Marisa Heung, Special Projects Editor

Available daily from 10:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. at 940 Auahi St., chubbiesburgers.com, @chubbieshawaii


SEE ALSO: 3 We Tried: In Search of the Best Smash Burger in Honolulu


Teri Burger of May

Punahou Carnival or most supermarkets ($ 17.99 for 12 patties)

Punahou Carnival

Photo: Aaron K. Yoshino

I don’t eat a lot of cow, but I LOVE May’s burgers. I do not know why. I guess it reminds me a bit of the hanabata days when drive-ins were popular. (And, I just dated myself). At the Punahou carnival, they serve a Teri burger that will change the minds of the most snobbish of previously frozen patties. The ingredients are simple: soft white bread, grilled Teri de Mai beef patty, and melted American cheese. I don’t even know if there is mayonnaise on it. But it’s perfect and a hot seller every year at the carnival. So you know thousands of people, and I can’t go wrong.—Stacey Makiya, Senior Fashion Editor

purityfoodshawaii.com


Turkey burger

$ 8.25 Burgers on Bishop

Turkey Burger from Burgers on Bishop

Photo: Katie Kenny

I’ve been in a bit of shape lately, so my top pick is the Turkey Burger from Burgers on Bishop in the Topa Financial Center downtown. This simple burger comes without any of the fixes, making it the perfect light weekday lunch (when all your coworkers are in the mood for burgers). The ground turkey patty is juicy, seasoned very well with a mixture of sage and does not require anything more. Sometimes less is Following!—Katie Kenny, Digital Editorial Specialist

745, rue Fort, # 130, (808) 586-2000, burgersonbishop.com, @burgersonbishop


A Blast From the Past (fingers crossed, it’s coming back!)

La Pinte + Jigger Stout Burger

$ 13 Pint + Jigger

The Pint + Jigger Stout Burger delivers exactly what a good burger should be: gooey, substantial, and topped with creamy gravy, crispy pickles and lettuce for balance. The freshly made galette is made to order with a generous slice of beer cheese, garlic aioli and is served with fries. Add avocado ($ 2 more) as it’s great and a healthy fat. Accompany the burger with an ice-cold lager, then a Talventi coffee-cream and rye and you are ready for the rest of your evening.—RD

Moved to the Ala Moana hotel, pintandjigger.com, @pintandjigger


SEE ALSO: Pint + Jigger will reopen next spring




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