Where is the Best Fast Casual Burger/Cheeseburger in Town?

Photo by PoPville flickr user Harry

“Dear PoPville,

I was hoping you could help settle a dispute among my friends and I. We all grew up in/around DC (I live in Mt. Pleasant now), and we would like to settle what the best fast-casual burger/cheeseburger is in DC? I deliberately left places like McDonald’s out because that’s definitely just fast food and not fast casual.”

36 Comment

  • five guys and z burger are literally the exact same thing

  • NH Ave Hiker

    Does Slash Run count? They’re usually very fast with their burgers.

    • No. Fast casual doesn’t have to do with how long your food takes to prepare. Rather, the defining characteristics of fast casual restaurants are prepaying for your food and a lack of table service.

    • Exactly what I was about to ask and post. I can’t have anyone else’s burgers anymore.
      And their rosemary garlic waffle fries! And their music! Oh, I love that place so much.

  • palisades

    Can’t beat the bang for your buck with Five Guys. I think Shake Shack may taste the best, but Five Guys is just such a good deal considering how much food you get. Also they’re local!

    • This guy knows. Here’s my list, mostly in order. Five Guys is always amazing and the best value. Shake Stack, I nearly die of either happiness and a heart attack getting that Shack Stack (a cheeseburger topped with a fried portabello which is stuffed with cheese). Good stuff eatery is legit too of course. Shakes, spike’s fries, and those sauces. Expensive but get after it… Tasty Burger isn’t on here but should be. It’s very good too. It’s relatively inexpensive and has solid beer selection. BTS, good but I never lost my mind over the burgers. It’s got milkshakes with booze in it though so why not. Z-Burger, I’d say get outta here…just seems like a worse five guys, unless you’re buying though then let’s go.

  • For veggie burgers I like BGR in Dupont

  • Still sad about the decline of Good Stuff Eatery

  • Good Stuff hands down. Best burger and overall package (fries).

    Five Guys is the best value. Shake Shack burgers are okay but way overpriced by the time you’re done ordering a meal and the fries are meh.

  • Z Burger/All About 4 lyfe.

  • Tsar of Truxton

    BGR or Rays (RIP to the good ole days of the Rogue States truffle burger). I still don’t get the allure of Shake Shack. It is a perfectly fine, greasy burger, but not any better or worse than something like 5 Guys with 4x the wait to get it (plus I would rather 5 Guys fries). And that place is a rip off.

  • BareBurger in Dupont is a newcomer, but they have a variety of interesting meat choices and the fries are top notch. It’s a step up from 5 guys and shake shack but it’s pretty casual and you can get some good beers.

  • justinbc

    Of those options it’s definitely Five Guys. But all of these places overcook the hell out of their patties, so it’s really just varying degrees of tolerability. At least with the old Black & Orange / Rogue States you could get it pink, sometimes, if they were paying attention. That operation was better than any of these, not sure how they failed.

  • Shake Shack has to be the most overrated burger I’ve ever had. It was certainly good, but it wasn’t great, and definitely not worth it over Five Guys or any other similar burger joint.

    However, the new chicken sandwich from Shake Shack is actually mindblowingly delicious. Drop your burgers and give that bad boy a try.

  • Elevation burger or BGR

    • I’ve always come away disappointed in Elevation Burger, and while I like BGR in the moment, it always gives me tummy issues later. 🙁
      For me it’s Five Guys all the way. They once gave me my burger for free because they put mayonnaise on my order (flargh) and left off the bacon.

  • Tasty Burger is pretty great. Should have been in this poll.

  • +1 on Rogue States

  • anonymouse_dianne

    Depends on how you like your burger. If you like lots of toppings on it you can’t beat Z-burger they will put everything on it and their Z sauce is really good. They have great seasoned fries and give you enough to feed the starving children in China (my mom’s phrase from the 50’s). Shake Shack double stax is a burger topped with a ‘shroom burger. And I love their “Chicago” style hotdogs. Haven’t tried the chicken sandwich but hear it’s really good.

  • Do not understand the lack of love for BTS – so much better than Five Guys or Good Stuff.

  • Elevation Burger is so, so good! Perfect grass fed burgers, awesome fries, perfectly crispy! I always used to feel sick after a Five Guys burger and the bun & fries at Shake Shacks are seriously lacking. I think the closest Elevation is in Hyattsville though. Wish we’d get one in DC!

  • I think all about burger is a good taste good price . I like it!

  • Z burger is definitely the best! Juicy burgers with lots of toppings. Love the z sauce.

  • I love Z burger food! Great tasting burgers and fries and incredible milkshakes.

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