Best Burgers!

VIA readers share many of their favorite places for hamburgers in the West.

plate of burgers at Helvetia Tavern in Hillsboro, Ore., image

A waitress holds a plate of burgers at Helvetia Tavern in Hillsboro, Ore.

VIA readers really like hamburgers, especially when they're big and a bargain, smothered with fixings, and served in a place with character. Here's a selection of favorites.

ALASKA
MONDEROSA BAR & GRILL, Nenana, Alaska. "On more than one occasion I've driven 70 miles to eat at the Monderosa, home to the best burger in the state," says Bob Ledbetter of North Pole, Alaska. "It's a beautiful log building alongside the Alaska Railroad tracks. With fireweed ablaze in the summer, the outdoor patio makes an already awesome burger even better. It's a must stop on the Parks Highway." (907) 832-5243.

HAWAII
BIG CITY DINER, Honolulu, Hawaii. "Forget about the gorgeous beaches, tropical landscapes, hula shows, and shopping," writes Marsha Jung of El Sobrante, Calif. "My first destination is to eat a burger at Big City Diner." (808) 738-8855.

DUANE'S, Kauai, Hawaii. "Every time we fly to Kauai, we immediately get our rental car and drive to Duane's, pick up our burgers and drive to our favorite sandbar by the beach to enjoy and savor the burgers," writes Connie Osborne of Los Altos, Calif. "We don't even go to our hotel to wind down—we go straight from the airport to Duane's!" (808) 822-9181.

IDAHO
DUTCH GOOSE, Boise, Idaho. "It has the ambiance of a neighborhood tavern and sports bar, with an impressive selection of hamburgers on the menu," writes Tom Glass of Boise. "To make it even better, on Tuesday the burgers are two-for-one. Our favorites are the Mikey Burger and the SOB—South of the Border Burger." (208) 342-8887.

RUPE'S BURGERS, Blackfoot, Idaho. "After your first burger here, you will want to come back," writes Darrell Wilson of Blackfoot. "If you're in a hurry, drive up, push a button, and give your order. A carhop will have it to you in a jiffy. Or you can go inside for a sit-down meal. The local decorations and atmosphere are great." (208) 785-5710.

WHEELER'S HANDOUT, Nampa, Idaho. "Ask for a Long and Juicy," suggests Linda Brock of Nampa. "It's not the traditional round shape but is rectangular. It is very juicy, and the sauce makes it a gourmet's delight. Keep a napkin handy." (208) 466-1684.

MONTANA
MATT'S PLACE DRIVE-IN, Butte, Mont. "Step through the door at Matt's and you step back in time," says Carol Bischoff of Helena. "It's a very small diner seating maybe 15 people, tops, and I'm certain the décor hasn't changed since it opened its doors in 1930. In addition to great burgers and fries, Matt's also has absolutely the best shakes and malts in the world." (406) 782-8049.

MISSOULA CLUB, Missoula, Mont. "The Mo Club, as it's known locally, is a downtown sports hangout that for the past 30 years has served the greatest burgers for miles and miles around," writes Dutch Meyer of Missoula. (406) 728-3740.

NAP'S GRILL, Hamilton, Mont. "My wife and I moved away from Montana, and we sure are missing the burgers at Nap's—the best in the West and probably on the planet," says Craig Williams of Philomath, Ore. "The Nap's Deal is a monster 12-ounce burger with a basket of twice-cooked thin-cut fries and a fountain drink. The prices are kept low. That's why Nap's is always the busiest restaurant in the Bitterroot Valley." (406) 363-0136.

OXFORD SALOON & CAFÉ, Missoula, Mont. "The half-pound Ox Burger is a great burger at a great price," says Bob Ringsbye of Missoula. "And they serve the best veggie burger I've ever eaten. It's as big as the Ox Burger and sells for the same price. I've never seen as good a deal anywhere." (406) 549-0117, www.the-oxford.com.

PAPA T'S, Dillon, Mont. "The best hamburger I've ever had was a Papa T's jalapeño burger," says Vicki Ruzicka of Helena. "The place serves all kinds of burgers. They come with cottage fries, which are thin chips of potatoes deep fried—just delicious. It's a wonderful family-oriented place worth the drive from anywhere." (406) 683-6432.

NEVADA
CLAIMJUMPER, Las Vegas, Nev. "It has the tallest, juiciest burgers," says Georgi Shalhoob of Las Vegas. "A half pound of meat stuffed into a bun with fixins—so big I have to nibble it like a rabbit because there's no way I'd get my mouth around it." (702) 243-8751, www.claimjumper.com.

HAMBURGER MARY'S, Las Vegas, Nev. "They have truly delicious, juicy burgers stacked six inches high," writes Kim Bowman of Las Vegas. "I love the Hawaiian: light teriyaki with fresh pineapple slice and mushrooms. Just fabulous!" (702) 735-4400, www.hamburgermaryslv.com .

LEFTY'S BURGERS, Carson City, Nev. "Once you eat a Lefty's burger you are hooked," says Donna Wungnema of Carson City. "When you leave Lefty's you leave with a smile on your face because everything is made with love." (775) 883-7220.

LITTLE NUGGET DINER, Reno, Nev. "Don't let the name fool you," says Ron Jahn of Reno. "The Awful Awful Burger at this little hole-in-the-wall is a gastronomic delight: It's awful big and awful good, and it sits on a huge pile of fries. You may have to wait in line, but it's well worth it." (775) 323-0716.

Q'S STEAKS, BBQ, AND SALADS, Carson City, Nev. "Big beauties on toasted sourdough buns and overloaded with fresh-cut tomato and lettuce," writes Linda Marantette of Carson City. "They even have a Big Tex Burger, which has two half-pound patties and stands about six inches high! I've never seen anyone finish one." (775) 841-7227.

RUBY TUESDAY, Las Vegas, Nev. "They have a menu sure to appeal to anyone's appetite," writes Marge Olson of Sparks, Nev. "They offer a variety of themed handcrafted burgers—one is called the ‘Ultimate Colossal Burger'—it is stacked so high, a sharp knife is inserted in the middle of the bun to keep it all together. You won't leave feeling hungry." (702) 838-4482. www.rubytuesday.com.

WILD HORSE BAR & GRILL, Minden , Nev. "The local ranchers, town folk, and families know where to go for a great burger," writes William Harris of Los Altos, Calif. "I don't know how they do it, but the big juicy burgers are to die for." (775) 782-7208.

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
ARENA COVE BAR & GRILL, Point Arena, Calif. "The beef, perfectly done to your order, is juicy and full flavored, and the fries are absolutely heaven sent," writes Joe Fazio of San Rafael. "A spectacular view out to sea can be had from this restaurant, which is located directly on the edge of the water, adjacent to the local wharf." (707) 882-2100, www.arenagrill.com.

AHWAHNEE HOTEL, Yosemite, Calif. "The majesty, location, and splendor of Yosemite have nothing to do with how great the burger was, seriously," writes Robert Hutchings of South San Francisco, Calif. "I'm going to Yosemite this December to see the Bracebridge show again, and frankly, I don't know if I am looking forward more to seeing Bracebridge or having an Ahwahnee Burger every day for lunch!" (209) 372-1489.

BARKING DOG GRILL, Modesto, Calif. "Grilled to seasoned perfection, an addictive mix of texture and taste," writes JoAnn Davison of Modesto. "Only in California is there a burger joint with chandeliers and brick walls adorned with jazz greats doing their thing, and Miles Davis whispering in your ear." (209) 572-2341.

THE BOSS BURGER, Oroville, Calif. "The meat is brought in fresh from a local family run meat market," writes Cliz Townsend of Oroville. "The hamburgers are hand pressed with secret seasonings and charbroiled to perfection—then add anything you want, from mushrooms and cheese to pastrami and bacon. There's also a build it yourself burger bar for those who want to make their own." (530) 534-8806.

BRIDGE TENDER, Tahoe City, Calif. "Of course, the variety of burgers is spectacular, and the accompanying fries are crisp and very tasty, but it is really about location," writes Donna Schuster of Cupertino, Calif. "How can you beat a seat at an outdoor table on the Truckee River within sight of scenic Lake Tahoe?" (530) 583-3342.

BURGER HUT BURGERS, Chico, Calif. "The burgers are grilled to your order, served on a toasted bun, and then you pile on the toppings of your choice from a salad type bar," say Gary and Julie Estep of Chico. "A burger you can barely wrap your mouth around and chin drippin' good. We have been fans since opening day." (530) 891-1418. www.burgerhut.net.

CARINE'S, Fort Bragg, Calif. "The back room has a view of the Noyo River—boats, seals and gulls" writes Bea Aker of Gualala, Calif. "The hamburger is one pound, they're great—we usually share one." (707) 964-2429.

CASTLE AIR MUSEUM CAFÉ, Atwater, Calif. "The café serves its famous ‘Bomber Burger' freshly grilled when ordered and on the best buns in town," write Harold and Betty Reposa of Atwater. "Afterwards, take a walk on the grounds, where historic aircraft are on display, including the SR-71, RB-36, and F-14 Tomcat." (209) 723-2178.

DAVE'S GIANT HAMBURGER, Fairfield Calif. "There's nothing fancy at Dave's," writes Benna Young of Fairfield, "Just a few small tables and several vinyl barstools at the linoleum counter. Dave Heimburger makes hamburgers, cheeseburgers, and chili-burgers with milkshakes so thick that a spoon works better than a straw. Don't look for fries on the menu—there aren't any." (707) 425-1818.

DIAMONDBACK GRILL, Sonora, Calif. "The snappy wait staff and good food make it a great stop on your way to Angel's Camp or coming home from Yosemite," writes Joy Ernst of Berkeley. "You won't run into Mark Twain, but you may come out with the prettiest t-shirt in the old west." (209) 532-6661.

DOG HOUSE GRILL, Fresno, Calif. "Boasting a small town atmosphere, the environment appeals to families, the college crowd, and anyone seeking a fun place to have good food with good friends," writes Kim Bagato of Clovis, Calif. "For a very reasonable price you can leave satisfied as a puppy with a full tummy!" (559) 294-9920.

FIFTY GRAND STEAKHOUSE, Pollack Pines, Calif. "While this is not a ‘hamburger joint' per se, they make the best hamburgers in Eldorado County," writes Sara Jane Karlen of Camino, Calif. "We are regulars; a hamburger fix with one of Earl's hamburgers is frequently needed." (530) 644-1580.

THE FORKS RESORT, Bass Lake, Calif. "They still cook on the old style grill at the end of the counter," writes Becky McCurdy of Coarsegold, Calif. "They actually have quite a menu, but I have been getting the hamburger, fries, and a shake for 35 years now and just can't bring myself to even look at the menu for something else." (559) 642-3737. www.theforksresort.com.

GIANT BURGER, Arnold, Calif. "It has large, thick milkshakes, and of course the burgers are huge," writes Rudy Van Pelt of Fremont, Calif. "What we like most is the way we feel when we stop at Giant Burger after a day of skiing or several days of hiking in the nearby wilderness area. It is the perfect way to cap the weekend." (209) 795-1594.

GIFF'S STEAKBURGER, Redding, Calif. "The Uglyburger is hand made, shaped to fit on a French roll and grilled on a real charcoal grill," writes Mike Lee of Janesville, Calif. "You then top it off with the fixings of your choice at the generously stocked sandwich bar and enjoy!" (530) 223-3586.

GOOD DOG, Modesto, Calif. "Everything is prepared with top quality ingredients, the selection is very extension and the food is always consistent," writes Marci D'Arpino of Modesto. "Each condiment is served in the perfect proportion." (209) 544-9466.

GRUMPY'S SPORTS RESTAURANT, Mammoth Lakes, Calif. "The hamburgers are a true delight, made of quality meat and perfectly seasoned," writes Sefi Aharonov of Sunnyvale, Calif. "They manage to keep the quality high with more than generous portions and fast and attentive service." (760) 934-8587. www.grumpysmammoth.com.

HARRINGTON'S BAR & GRILL, San Francisco, Calif. "Being very much the Irish pub, everyone is very friendly and you feel like you're sharing a pint with family," writes Brian Andrews of San Francisco. "Prices are amazingly low considering the neighborhood—go for the Super 1/2 pound burger on either a bun or French roll." (415) 392-7595. www.harringtonsbarandgrill.com.

HINDQUARTER BAR & GRILL, Santa Cruz, Calif. "A meat lover's paradise," writes Wally Goldfrank of Santa Cruz. "The chairs and the banquettes are made out of leather, but the best part of the animal goes inside the bun." (831) 426-7770. www.thehindquarter.com.

JASON'S BEACHSIDE GRILLE, Kings Beach, Calif. "We have lived here for 20 years and have traveled extensively," writes Betty Fineman of Incline Village, Nev. "But we have never found a more fabulous hamburger feast than in our own backyard. They offer the most delectable hamburger." (530) 546-3315. www.jasonsbeachsidegrille.com

JEFFREY'S HAMBURGERS, San Mateo, Calif. "This is an old-fashioned burger place, not trendy or high-priced," writes Marjorie Forrest of San Mateo. "They feature a fixings bar to dress up your burgers the way you like them. Garlic fries, homemade chili, and the most amazing milkshakes topped with whipped cream and cherries. You feel like you're back in the Fifties." (650) 348-8698.

JOE'S CABLE CAR RESTAURANT, San Francisco, Calif. "Off the beaten path, they offer a wide variety of fresh burgers, all in a very down to earth, diner kind of feel," says Mason Jones of San Francisco. "As the signs, napkins, and menu all remind you, ‘Joe grinds his own fresh chuck daily!' " (415) 334-6699, www.joescablecarrestaurant.com.

JOE'S OF WESTLAKE, Daly City, Calif. "I suggest sitting at the counter to watch the chef do his magic," writes Sue Maesen of Jacksonville, Ore. "When he puts it on the charcoal grill, flames leap up as he broils it your way. An eight-inch sourdough loaf holds the juicy patty." (650) 755-7400, joesofwestlake.com.

M&G'S, Fairfax, Calif. "It's a little piece of surfside, hot rod lovin' burger heaven," writes Camille Esposito of Fairfax. "We were so happy to find some of the best burgers ever in this little shack. The only hint to what awaits inside is a lovely old Ford with a surfboard that is always parked outside." (415) 454-0655.

MAMMOTH ORANGE, Chowchilla, Calif. "My husband drove a truck in the 1960s, and when he had deliveries to make in the Fresno area, he was ecstatic because that meant he could stop at Mammoth Orange. The cook there knew that if a trucker drove up and tooted a certain number of times, that was the order," writes Ethel Brodie of Discovery Bay, Calif. "We have since stopped there on several trips, even going out of our way to visit it. The hamburgers are delicious!" (559) 665-2955.

NATIONWIDE FREEZER MEATS, Sacramento, Calif. "I'm not much of a fast food person, but every once in a while I crave a good burger," writes Gordon Cox of Foresthill, Calif. "This is a no frill place, but it can't be beat. Their buns are made fresh daily, and the meat is of excellent quality." (916) 444-3286.

NEPENTHE RESTAURANT, Big Sur, Calif. "We have sat on the terrace and absorbed the views of the central Big Sur coast as we enjoyed a glass of wine with the famous Ambrosia Burger," writes Paul Schoor of Antioch, Calif. "The views are exquisite and the burger's sensational." (831) 667-2345, www.nepenthebigsur.com.

QUAIL RUN RESTAURANT, River Rock Casino, Geyserville, Calif. "As a member of the Redwood Riders Motorcycle Club, I spend a lot of time on the back roads of Northern California," says Paul Albert of San Rafael, Calif. "Our highlight of the day is finding outstanding places to eat that are reasonably priced with large portions and quality food. The best hamburger in the North Bay is there—cooked to perfection and ordered with the works!" (707) 857-2777, www.riverrockcasino.com.

REDRUM BURGER, Davis, Calif. "Better known by its former Murder Burger title, this somewhat understated burger stand does what other vendors only advertise: leaves you you craving more, but too full to try," writes Don Moon of Turlock, Calif. "The incredible variety of condiments lend a Frankensteinian bent for creativity. What a feast!" (530) 756-2142.

SAL'S TACOS, West Sacramento, Calif. "Of all places, bar none, for the best hamburger go not to a burger joint but to a Mexican restaurant," writes Neil Bleiweis of Somerset, Calif. "The Mexican food is excellent, and the last thing you would think to order would be a hamburger—it's barely on the menu, nondescript and off on the corner. Try one and you'll never eat their Mexican food again." (916) 372-3892.

THE SMOKEHOUSE, Berkeley, Calif. "It has a menu to match its 50s drive-thru good looks, and it's open late!" writes Alina Potts of Oakland. "Eating inside or out on the picnic tables provided makes it likely you'll strike up a good conversation to go with your food—assuming you aren't too busy noshing." (510) 845-3640.

SNOWHITE DRIVE IN, Lodi, Calif. "When I first moved to this area, I couldn't help noticing there was always a crowd of people waiting outside the Snowhite Drive-in. Not being a fast food junkie, I continued to drive past until my son was smart enough to stop," writes Gail Bowler of Woodbridge, Calif. "Now I fight the urge to eat their burgers on a regular basis. I love the BC Special—a bacon cheeseburger, with all the usual fresh accoutrements, plus three fried onion rings on top. It's a treat in both taste and texture, and should go down in the ‘Burger Hall of Fame.' " (209) 369-5314.

SQUEEZE INN, Sacramento, Calif. "People drive miles for a Squeezeburger," says Greg Voelm of Sacramento. "The place comes by its name honestly. There are only 12 stools along a counter left from grandfather's time. (You'll find picnic tables around back.) Real burger fans go for the Squeeze with Cheese." (916) 386-8599.

TAYLOR'S AUTOMATIC REFRESHER, St. Helena, Calif. "During or after wine tasting in the Napa Valley, stop at this 1940's-era drive-in that serves burgers the way you like them," says Trudie Bradford of Walnut Creek, Calif. "Ample parking and outdoor seating—it's a fun alternative to the valley's restaurant scene." (707) 963-3486, taylorsrefresher.com.

VAL'S CHARBROILER, Hayward, Calif. "Truly an original American diner—straight out of the 1950s," writes Dorcas Meyer of San Leandro. "You slather your Papa, Mama, or Baby burger with the condiments in bowls at your table. Want an old-fashioned shake? This one is made with real ice cream, chocolate syrup, and whipped cream. Val's is what ‘the good old days' are all about." (510) 889-8257.

WOODEN NICKEL BAR & GRILL, Freedom, Calif. "The Nickel Burger has a half pound of beef—it is a meal for two adults, or for one hungry appetite," writes Pat Golditch of Watsonville. "They also have a bar so you can wash it down with your favorite libation." (831) 724-2600.

WORLD FAMOUS HAMBURGER RANCH & PASTA FARM, Cloverdale, Calif. "The perfect family-friendly stop between San Francisco and Mendocino," says Andrea Fischer of Fort Bragg, Calif. "Not only are the hamburgers and ranch fries unsurpassed, there's also an outdoor patio." (707) 894-5616.

OREGON
BONANZA DRIVE-UP, Cottage Grove, Ore. "The burger is saucy, flavorful and ample," writes Sherry Cook of Cottage Grove. "From the slightly greasy bun, to the great taste of the patty, I don't think you can find a better burger." (541) 942-4188.

BURGER QUEEN, Lakeview, Ore. "These two-fisted burgers are made to order so each one is fresh, piping hot, and tasty," writes Jim Engels of Bend, Ore. "Accompany that with a frosty shake and you're in hamburger heaven!" (541) 947-3677.

BURGERVILLE, Albany, Ore., and 38 other locations in northwest Oregon and Washington. "Not only are the burgers great—made with fresh, local products like Tillamook cheese and Oregon beef—but the milkshakes are also incredible," says Elliot McIntire of Eugene. "They feature in-season berries and fruits and are so thick you have to really work to suck them up through the straw." (541) 926-0669 (Albany), www.burgerville.com.

CALAMITY JANE'S HAMBURGER RESTAURANT, Sandy, Ore. "A fabulous ‘hamburger parlour' in true Western saloon style," writes Karen Zimmerman of Corvalis. "Although I haven't eaten every one of the 38 creative hamburgers—like the George Washington, with sour cream and hot cherries—I've loved every one I have tried. The City Slicker (1/3 pound) is plenty for me, but they also offer the Wrangler (2/3 pound) and Trail Boss (1 pound), all served in cast iron skillets, with fries. Thumbs way up!" (503) 668-7817.

DAILY GRILL, Portland, Ore. "The burger served at lunch time is a hefty half-pounder, while the dinner version is a three-quarter pound behemoth," says Dave Taube of Eugene, Ore. "You won't leave hungry. Just make sure you have an ample supply of napkins because this burger is juicy!" (503) 224-5061, www.dailygrill.com.

DANDY'S DRIVE-IN, Bend, Ore. "My best memory of Dandy's is when on the way to my wedding, in my wedding dress, I pulled into a stall to order my last meal as a singleton," writes Gina Bjorvik of Portland, Ore. "I'd been dieting like crazy in those months before my wedding and I knew exactly what I wanted my first non-diet splurge to be—the Grand Dandy. The look on the carhops face was priceless, and she brought me about 50 napkins to cover my dress. No worries though, I knew I wouldn't let one precious drop of that juicy burger escape my mouth." (541) 382-6141.

FELY'S CAFÉ, Brookings, Ore. "You can't get much farther west or a better burger," writes Jane Cadwell of Brookings. "Fely is a great cook and a great hostess. Bring a friend to help you eat the huge, juicy hamburger and to enjoy the ocean view and seaside atmosphere." (541) 412-0350.

GIANT DRIVE-IN, Lake Oswego, Ore. "It has been serving up dripping, delicious burgers for decades," writes Lois Barnum of Lake Oswego. "Our favorite order is the mushroom and jack cheese concoction that guarantees you have to eat in—it's too messy for the car!" (503) 636-0255.

HELVETIA TAVERN, Helvetia, Ore. "This former stage coach stop has the relaxed ambiance of an old tavern," says Clair Kuppenbender of Canby, Ore. "The really great burgers are served on platters with loads of fries—a real meal—and on nice days you can enjoy the quiet picnic area in back. One caution: If you wear a cap into the tavern, you run the danger of having it affixed permanently to the ceiling." (503) 647-5286.

HIGGINS RESTAURANT AND BAR, Portland. "Without a doubt, Higgins has the best burger in town," writes Greg McMickle of Portland. "Sirloin is hand-minced and hand-formed at the time of the order, broiled, then served on a toasted rosemary bun. It's available only from the Bistro menu in the bar." (503) 222-9070, higgins.ypguides.net/.

PILOT BUTTE DRIVE-IN RESTAURANT, Bend, Ore. "Without a second thought, most residents and visitors will tell you a burger from this old-style drive-in will be the most delicious you ever sink your teeth into," says Andrea Boyle of Creswell, Ore. "You can get a guacamole burger, a Hawaiian one, or a basic one and even eat inside—if you can find a table, that is." (541) 382-2972, www.pilotbutte.com.

ROOSTER'S, Medford, Ore. "One of the best home-made hamburgers in the West," writes Mark McCall of Mountain View, Calif. "Rooster's hand-forms the patties, which are nice and high, then it's char-grilled—a satisfying, tasty burger." (541) 779-3895.

STANDING STONE BREWING COMPANY, Ashland, Ore. "A totally wonderful burger is this brewpub's 1/3 pound of grilled buffalo on house-made focaccia," says Pam Palmer of Ashland. "The ground buffalo comes from a ranch in Oregon and is extremely lean. The best part is that you can have it cooked as rare as you wish. And in the warm months there's patio seating." (541) 482-2448.

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
FATHER'S OFFICE, Santa Monica, Calif. "In the ‘City of Angels' luscious food abounds, from spicy, authentic enchiladas to creative and quirky gourmet cuisine. However, for the true beef aficionado, the hamburger at Father's Office might eclipse all else," writes Rachel Norton of Santa Monica. "It's worth every succulent bite, especially after a hard day or night at work." (310) 393-2337.

GOOD OL' BURGERS, Paso Robles, Calif. "Balls of hamburger meat are cooked on a flaming grill behind a viewing window so wondering spectators can watch," writes Teresa Baker of Lemoore, Calif. "I always have to stop there to eat on my way to the coast, and of course, stop there again on my way home." (805) 238-0655.

RUBY'S, Balboa Pier, Balboa, Calif. "Their burgers are big and juicy, my mouth waters just thinking about it," writes Shelley McCracken of San Jose, Calif. "I have no idea what they season them with, but it's darn tasty. There's something for everyone." (949) 675-RUBY, www.rubys.com.

TOMMY'S, Los Angeles, and 28 other locations in Southern California. "My husband developed a great love for these hamburgers when we lived in the San Fernando Valley, so he had real separation anxiety when we moved to the Bay Area," writes Crystal Salvage of Danville, Calif. "Not too long ago he woke up with a taste for one, and so overwhelming was his desire he drove over 600 miles just to buy a hamburger. If I could find a way to duplicate it, I'd save a lot of wear and tear on our car!" (213) 389-9060, www.originaltommys.com.

UTAH
RAY'S TAVERN, Green River, Utah. "Perfect condiments, all the extras, and quality flavor," writes Linda Shosted of Jospeh, Utah. "We'll even park the RV for a night for the sole reason of a burger and a beer at Ray's." (435) 564-3511.

SHOOTING STAR SALOON, Huntsville, Utah. "You'll think you've died and gone to heaven," writes Clarence Socwell of Ogden, Utah. "Built in 1879, this is the oldest continuously running bar in Utah, although the owners now serve only beer, soft drinks, and hamburgers. The Star Burger has two hamburger patties with a grilled Polish sausage on top. We are never disappointed." (801) 745-2002.

Photography by Robbie McClaran

This article was first published in July 2006. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.

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