Like any true American, I love a good burger. With places such as Terry’s, Zips, Arnold’s, Gordo’s, The Rookwood, Cafe de Wheels and Quatmann’s just to name a few, Cincinnati has a decent selection for burger lovers. Moving to the heart of beef country I figured I would have lots of good options for burgers. However, it has been the opposite. So far I’ve had some ok burgers and some below average burgers, nothing really approaching great. Luckily that changed this weekend after a visit to Collie’s burger trailer on South Lamar.
Collie’s is located in the South Lamar Food Bazaar food trailer park and is new to the Austin food scene, so I couldn’t find much info or reviews on their burgers. What little info I found was positive, I liked what I saw on their website and they are close to my apartment. So I figured I should give them a shot. Their half pound patties are made with a mixture of freshly ground chuck and brisket. And it is really freshly ground as we were informed the patties were made from a grind of only 3 hours prior to our arrival. They have a wide variety of burgers but Alison and I just went with the signature cheeseburger. After our first bites we knew we finally found a great burger in Austin. The owner asked if we would change anything about the food, and we replied don’t change a thing cause it’s perfect how it is. The flavor, texture and size were spot on. We also split an order of fresh cut fries which were also tasty.
The guy’s who run Collie’s are extremely friendly as well. During our meal we chatted with the owner. We discussed the burger scene in Austin and he agreed with us that’s it’s lacking. His exact words “It sucks doesn’t it! That’s why I opened this place.” Collie’s advertises they have “REAL. SERIOUS. BURGERS.” and that’s one of the truest advertisements I’ve seen. They are a little pricier than most burger joints, but for the amount of food you get and a truly great burger, it’s worth it.
Other burgers I’ve tried in Austin so far
Here are short reviews of other burgers I’ve tried since I’ve moved here:
Hopdoddy – This is the trendiest burger joint in town. If you get here at a peak dining hour the line is out the door. I thought the Hopdoddy burger was just ok, definitely not wait in a long line good. I do like the ambience and they have a good beer and alcohol selection. So I’ll view it as a good trendy bar that also has ok burgers.
Wholly Cow – I really wanted to like Wholly Cow. They advertise they use local grass fed beef, this is what drew me in. Unfortunately I found the beef to be dry with a tough texture and over seasoned. I’m not sure if it was poorly cooked or if that is how it was supposed to taste. If it’s the latter then I do not get the hype at all. The reviews on yelp make it seem like their burgers are Heaven on a bun. Not for me I suppose.
Casino el Camino – This is another burger that is mentioned amongst the best in town. It came really, really, really close to being a great burger. Unfortunately the bun ruins it. They use a sweet roll for their bun. I didn’t think the taste from the sweet roll worked well with the burger and the bottom bun got incredible soggy within a minute or two. The beef and the bacon on my burger were both really tasty. With a different bun you would have a great product here.
Black Sheep Lodge – Overall, this is my 2nd favorite burger I’ve had in Austin so far. Black Sheep is a good bar that also happens to have some really good bar food. Their burgers are half pound patties made with angus chuck beef. The burger isn’t nearly as good as Collie’s, which is just down the road, but it’s good for a bar. What we really enjoyed here were the corn dog bites we got as an appetizer. I’d say Black Sheep is a good place to go out with friends for drinks and grub. Parking is a bit tricky over there though.
Mighty Fine – For a fast food style burger, Mighty Fine is pretty decent. The food reminded me of a better tasting Wendy’s, and I actually mean that in a good way. They have fresh chuck burgers, which I always approve of. I liked the ordering system and the employees were friendly. Out of the food I ordered, I think I enjoyed the milkshake the most. If I want a quick, reliable and reasonably priced burger, Mighty Fine will fill that need.