We've already established that Chicago's a burger-lovin' town. With so many gourmet burger joints in the city, they’re finding that they must set themselves apart by offering something unique, from house-made ingredients and buns to locally sourced meat.
But Chicago's steakhouses take burgers to an entirely different level. Most boast in-house butcher programs, ensuring the best quality of beef, including U.S.D.A. prime, Tallgrass and locally raised meats. And when cooked correctly they make the juiciest, most flavorful offerings in town.
These are the things dreams are made of--so to speak--and we've compiled a great list of Chicago steakhouse burgers you'll fantasize about long after that first bite. Whether you're a local or visitor staying in one of the best downtown hotels, you are guaranteed to end the meal on a happy note.
Bavette's Bar & Boeuf
Why We Love This Burger: Alas, this French-themed lounge and steakhouse in River North is open only during dinner, but the vibe's not so stuffy that you'll feel awkward ordering the burger. The beef is sourced locally from Slagel Farms, then griddled to perfection. Each burger comes with a six-ounce patty and topped with sharp American cheese, Dijonnaise and a farm fresh fried egg (optional for an extra $2).
Address: 218 W. Kinzie St.
Why We Love This Burger: With a spectacular view overlooking the Chicago River, Chicago Cut elevates itself even more as one of the city's top modern steakhouses. The price tag of $16 for this burger is quite a bargain, considering you're getting a 12-ounce patty made from prime beef trimmings of New York strip and bone-in ribeye. The meat's also been dry-aged for 35 days. It's topped simply with a house-made brioche bun as well as lettuce, tomato and onion, plus guests may choose from a variety of cheeses (add a strip of Applewood-smoked bacon from Wisconsin for an extra $3).
Address: 300 N. LaSalle St.
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Harry Caray's Steakhouses
Why We Love This Burger: How perfect and appropriate that Harry Caray's signature burger is dubbed the Holy Cow! Burger, paying homage to the famed Cubs announcer. It's a favorite among those patronizing the tavern side of the steakhouse, which is always tuned into sports or the news. The Holy Cow! is made of 10-ounce sirloin, candied Applewood smoked bacon, five-year aged Gouda, lettuce and Harry’s Steak Sauce between a Brioche bun. The burger's available at all three Harry Caray's Steakhouse locations.
Address(es): 33 W. Kinzie St., Chicago; 70 Yorktown Shopping Center, Lombard; 10233 W. Higgins Rd., Rosemont
Maple & Ash
Why We Love This Burger: Located directly across the street from Tavern on Rush in the Gold Coast, the ultra-sleek M&A offers the best deal in town for a prime steakburger. It's free every Monday after 10 p.m., and guests get a half-pounder garnished with cheddar, bacon, pickles, red onion jam and garlic aioli. It's also accompanied by a mound of freshly cut fries.
Address: 8 W. Maple St.
Prime & Provisions
Why We Love This Burger: Located right off the Chicago River, Prime & Provisions is the first Chicago steakhouse to source only U.S.D.A. all natural prime heritage black Angus beef. The artisanal Kansas beef product is known to be humanely raised and never exposed to hormones, antibiotics or pesticides. The beef for the burger is dry aged for 28 days, then eight ounces is placed between a house-made brioche bun topped with sharp Wisconsin American cheese and Dijonnaise.
Address: 222 N. LaSalle St.
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Why We Love This Burger: Situated on a quiet, tree-lined street in the well-heeled Streeterville neighborhood, Rosebud Steakhouse is an area favorite. It's also in close proximity to hotels such as Drake Hotel Chicago, Intercontinental Chicago Hotel, Park Hyatt Chicago and Ritz-Carlton Chicago. Most regulars come for the "favorites" menu, which includes baby back ribs, brick-roasted chicken, "firecracker" pork chop and, of course, Rosebud's signature burger. It's made with a hefty, 12-ounce portion of Lynn's heritage Angus beef and tucked inside a toasted brioche bun with lettuce, tomato, onion and pickle.
Address: 192 E. Walton St.
Tavern on Rush
Why We Love This Burger: Tavern on Rush is located across the street from Thompson Chicago Hotel, a block west of Oak Street Beach and two blocks away from the Magnificent Mile Shopping District. That pretty much makes it popular all day long--from brunch service to last call. Luckily, you can order the 10-ounce prime steak burger from each menu. It's particularly juicy and flavorful because the beef is a nice blend of short rib, brisket and chuck.
Address: 1031 N. Rush St.