Grass Fed Burger at Red Roost Tavern (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Grass Fed Burger at Red Roost Tavern (photo: Thadd Fiala)

“When in doubt, just order a burger.”

It’s some of the best advice I’ve ever heard. I love a good burger, and there are a bunch of really outstanding burgers in town. Here’s a list of some of my favorite burgers around downtown Cincinnati, in alphabetical order…

The Dancing Pig and Standard Burger at Arnold's Bar and Grill

The Dancing Pig at Arnold's Bar and Grill (photo: Thadd Fiala)
The Dancing Pig at Arnold's Bar and Grill (photo: Thadd Fiala)

You know what makes a great burger even better? Smother it with BBQ sauce and add some crispy bacon like on Arnold's The Dancing Pig burger. There’s something about having BBQ sauce drip onto your hands while you’re eating a burger that makes it awesome – especially when it’s at Cincinnati’s Oldest Bar. 

Burger at Arnold's Bar and Grill (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Burger at Arnold's Bar and Grill (photo: Thadd Fiala)

But even Arnold’s standard burger with cheese is really juicy and full of goodness. It’s nothing super fancy – just a really solid cheeseburger.

BRU Burger at BRU Burger Bar

BRU Burger (photo: Thadd Fiala)
BRU Burger (photo: Thadd Fiala)

I love it when restaurants mix it up a little with different ingredients. The BRU Burger from BRU Burger Bar is made from a signature blend of sirloin, chuck and brisket, topped with unique ingredients like Taleggio cheese and tomato jam and our old favorites: bacon, caramelized onions, chopped lettuce and mayo.

BRU Burger (photo: Thadd Fiala)
BRU Burger (photo: Thadd Fiala)

The Taleggio cheese and tomato jam make this burger stand out in my mind. It’s the little things. 

BurgerFi Burger at BurgerFi

BurgerFi Burger (photo: Thadd Fiala)
BurgerFi Burger (photo: Thadd Fiala)

Another rule I go by if you’re having trouble deciding which burger to order, go with the one named after the restaurant. That’s what I did at BurgerFi and I did not regret it. The BurgerFi Burger is 100% natural Angus beef, double beef and double American cheese.

BurgerFi Burger (photo: Thadd Fiala)
BurgerFi Burger (photo: Thadd Fiala)

It’s a very solid burger. And did you see the size of those onion rings? Onion rings as big as your double cheeseburger? Yes, please! 

Cheeseburger at Moerlein Lager House

Cheeseburger at Moerlein Lager House (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Cheeseburger at Moerlein Lager House (photo: Thadd Fiala)

I’ve tried a bunch of the burger offerings at Moerlein Lager House. And I’ve never had anything but a fantastic burger experience. Like the cheeseburger. They’re all so good. Just close your eyes and point, you won’t be disappointed. Moerlein Lager House also has outstanding onion rings. Just saying.

Prime Burger at Morton's The Steakhouse

Morton's Prime Burger at Morton's The Steakhouse (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Morton's Prime Burger at Morton's The Steakhouse (photo: Thadd Fiala)

You’d expect a steakhouse to be able to deliver an outstanding burger and Morton’s Prime Burger doesn’t disappoint. Just look at all those delicious mushrooms. This burger is definitely one that could feed a small village. It was huge. 

Quesadilla Burger at Nation Kitchen and Bar

Quesadilla Burger at Nation Kitchen and Bar (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Quesadilla Burger at Nation Kitchen and Bar (photo: Thadd Fiala)

When I feel like mixing it up, I go for the Quesadilla Burger at Nation Kitchen and Bar. It's six ounces of beef topped with queso, spicy pepper jack cheese, pico, and lettuce all wrapped in a tortilla.

Quesadilla Burger at Nation Kitchen and Bar (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Quesadilla Burger at Nation Kitchen and Bar (photo: Thadd Fiala)

And the tots. Omigosh, Nation’s tots. Give me a Nation burger and loaded tots any day, and I’ll be a happy man.

Paxton Prime Time Burger at Prime Cincinnati

Paxton Prime Time Burger at Prime Cincinnati (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Paxton Prime Time Burger at Prime Cincinnati (photo: Thadd Fiala)

Speaking of spicy, that brings us to Prime Cincinnati's Paxton burger. Cherrywood smoked bacon, balsamic onions, habanero Havarti, leaf lettuce, tomatoes, basil aioli on a brioche bun. That habanero Havarti cheese really brings the heat! 

Paxton Prime Time Burger at Prime Cincinnati (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Paxton Prime Time Burger at Prime Cincinnati (photo: Thadd Fiala)

And did you see the size of those jumbo tater tots? They are awesome. 

Bison Burger and Grass-fed Burger at Red Roost Tavern

Bison Burger from Red Roost Tavern (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Bison Burger from Red Roost Tavern (photo: Thadd Fiala)

Red Roost Tavern located in the Hyatt Regency has a seasonal Bison Burger that is just out of this world. It’s so flavorful, tender and juicy. (Check with the restaurant to see if it is currently available.)

Grass Fed Burger at Red Roost Tavern (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Grass Fed Burger at Red Roost Tavern (photo: Thadd Fiala)

But now thinking about it, even the standard grass-fed burger is pretty incredible, as well.

Steak burger at Spoon & Cellar

Steakburger at Spoon&Cellar (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Steakburger at Spoon&Cellar (photo: Thadd Fiala)

One of the latest burgers I’ve had for lunch was the Steak Burger from Spoon & Cellar in the Holiday InnWith this steak burger, there was a whole new level of texture for me. The beef is just more crumbly, if that’s a word.

Steakburger at Spoon&Cellar (photo: Thadd Fiala)
Steakburger at Spoon&Cellar (photo: Thadd Fiala)

It was a terrific burger that I will be getting for lunch again very soon. 

There are so many really outstanding burgers around downtown Cincinnati. And new burgers seem to pop up all the time. Where will you find your new favorite burger?