By Douglas Scott
The hamburger is one of the most iconic American foods, with Americans eating roughly 50,000,000,000 (billion) burgers each year. Americans eat nearly three burgers each and every week, making it one of the most popular meal choices in the country. With so many burgers being eaten, it seems as if we each have millions of choices of where to pick up our next burger. Luckily, Grays Harbor has some of the best burgers in the state, with tourists flocking miles out of their way just to bite into a juicy, succulent meal.
Every town around the country seems to have their local favorite burger joint, with the first burger restaurant starting in 1895 in New Haven, Connecticut. While chain burger places have inundated cities across the nation, the small burger stands that started in the mid-1900s offer some of the best food, fries and shakes anywhere. In Grays Harbor, we are lucky enough to have dozens of locations for delicious burgers, with four consistently ranking as the most popular in Grays Harbor. The burgers stands listed are the highest ranking burgers on social media and in conversations around town, making the following destinations must-stop burger stops when you and your family are craving delicious beef patties.
Al’s Hum-Dinger (104 Lincoln Street in Hoquiam)
Consistently named the Best Burger in Grays Harbor County by locals and tourists alike, the delicious burgers at Al’s Hum-Dinger have become must-have meals for burger enthusiasts of all ages. Established in the 1950s, Al’s Hum-Dinger is located on the banks of the Hoquiam River, where it has been a burger connoisseur’s tradition for generations of visitors and residents of Grays Harbor. In town, one is hard-pressed to find a local who hasn’t tried the famous Hum-Dinger Burger and loved it. Considered to have the best fries in Grays Harbor, as well as fantastic milkshakes made with real ice cream, stopping at the Hum-Dinger is considered by some a rite of passage to be a true local of Grays Harbor. For those who haven’t tried a burger here, be aware that there is no indoor seating. The most popular burger is the Hum-Dinger, but everything on the menu is incredible. Read more reviews here: http://bit.ly/12DOiR1
Smitty’s In & Out (1424 West Main Street in Elma)
Hidden from the heavy traffic of Highway 12, Smitty’s In & Out might just be the most under-rated burger destination in Grays Harbor. Established around 1950, Smitty’s is a local favorite that brings joy to the tastebuds of everyone who bites into a delicious burger. The most popular burger is the Mike Burger, which consists of a double burger, mayo and relish; but most visitors pick up a combo meal, with fries and a shake. Not listed on the menu is probably the Hangover Burger, which includes double bacon and ham, as well as an option for an egg to be added. Heavy, greasy and delicious, the burgers here are fantastic, making Smitty’s one of the most popular places to eat in the region. Besides burgers, Smitty’s offers tasty fries and incredibly delicious shakes, with the most popular flavors being blackberry and peanut butter. Next time you are driving by Elma, stop by Smitty’s and see what everyone is talking about. Read more reviews here: http://bit.ly/1z2c5a6
Clarks Restaurant (731 US 101 in Cosmopolis)
Clarks is one of those places that once you eat at, you won’t want to go anywhere else. Many claim Clarks burgers are the best in Grays Harbor, and those who frequent the restaurant emphatically agree. Employees of Clarks tell us that the restaurant was originally opened in 1923, but it wasn’t until 1998 that the restaurant was opened in its current form. Taken over in 1997 and renovated for nearly a year, Clarks Restaurant is considered the best restaurant for those who travel Highway 101 in Grays Harbor. The most popular burger at this off-the-beaten track burger stand is the Basic Deluxe Cheeseburger, which comes with a quarter-pound patty on a 5-inch bun, topped with lettuce, tomato, pickles, goop and onions. Match this with Clarks famous blackberry shake and your tastebuds will be rejoicing for hours after the meal is finished. The shakes are handmade with homemade ice cream, and the burgers are cooked to order, making Clarks the ideal diner for those looking for great food. Called “sinfully delicious” by visitors, the burgers at Clarks are well worth the drive to the small town of Artic. Ask the staff about their Blackberry Pie. You will love it! Read more reviews here: http://bit.ly/1BEqED2
Grizzly Den (300 West Emerson in Hoquiam)
The Grizzly Den, located across the street from Hoquiam High School is the last stop for a classic old school burger before hitting the coast. Small, historic and delicious, the Grizzly Den in Hoquiam has been around since 1958, with the most current changes occurring in 2000. The burgers are handmade, the fries are delicious and the shakes at the Grizzly Den are said by many to be the best in the county. The most popular burgers at the Grizzly Den are the Grizzly Burger and the Bacon Cheeseburger. The Grizzly Burger is a double bacon cheeseburger, topped with swiss and cheddar cheese, perfect for those who have a bear of an appetite. The Grizzly Den’s burgers are incredible tasty, and those who have eaten one will have their mouth water just thinking of the next time they can bite into one of them before washing it down with a hot fudge milkshake. Read more reviews here: http://bit.ly/1yHBbam