The Twin Cities are a haven for burger lovers, and four of the metro area's top patties have made it on to Thrillist's 100 Best Burgers in America list.
The rankings were compiled by Thrillist's national burger critic Kevin Alexander, who visited 30 cities and consumed 330 burgers as part of a yearlong "Burger Quest."
He calls the burger the "most democratic of foods" – with the best found anywhere from "the dankest of dive bars, or in the fanciest of restaurants." And he found four of his favorites in the Twin Cities.
Who is on the list?
No "best burger" list, national or otherwise, would be complete without a mention of Minnesota's famous, cheese-stuffed Jucy Lucy. And it's why Matt's Bar makes it on the list at No. 100.
"The original and most iconic of the many joints serving up that strange Minnesota burger filled with mouth-scalding cheese, Matt's Bar has the most delicious one by far," Alexander writes. "And you get to eat it inside a place that feels like the bar your grandfather always meant to build in his basement."
Fourteen places ahead of Matt's, at No. 86, is the Paddy Shack Burger by The Paddy Shack, at the Half-Time Rec in St. Paul. Alexander says its "secret weapon" is a picked green tomato that he says is "damn delicious."
"If there is a better name for an Irish-influenced restaurant within a sports bar in the country, I don't want to know about it," he adds.
The best two burgers he found in the cities were The Parlour Burger at Parlour, in Minneapolis, which came in at No. 47, and The Cheeseburger at Saint Dinette in St. Paul, which finished 40th.
Of the Parlour Burger, the critic says his favorite thing "is the perfect simplicity of complex, funky thin patties melding with American cheese on a perfectly griddled bun."
"My second favorite thing about the Parlour burger is how my auto-correct insists on changing it to Parkour, and I really want to keep it," he jokes.
His favorite was Saint Dinette's burger, which has patties that look like they were "stolen from a 'perfect char' Google Image search," and sharp Cheddar cheese that somehow "melts like American."
"The people at Saint Dinette are wizards," he says. "That's really the only plausible explanation."
Alexander ranked the best Twin Cities burgers in a list this past September, and interestingly – while his top three are the same as his national list – Matt's Bar only ranked 6th out of 11. In 4th and 5th were the 112 Cheeseburger at the 112 Eatery and the Nighthawks Cheeseburger at Nighthawks Diner & Bar, both in Minneapolis.
Ok, the article's over and we know you're hungry – go find a burger, quick!