Would you eat here?

From   |  April 16, 2012
In Hometown Scoop, Travel Scoop

In my never-ending search for the best hamburger/ cheeseburger, I was Googling Wilmington's (NC) best burger. Like practically any city in the US these days, there's a public vote contest about the best of everything. Here in Wilmington, the Star News (newspaper), WWAY - TV3 (ABC affiliate) and Encore Magazine all have run Best Burger contests. I've eaten at each of the winners of those contests and while they are good, not one hamburger has made me sigh with culinary pleasure.

Then I happened upon a blog post by Paul Stephen, a Port City Foodies Blogger with the Star News. He was lamenting the fact that Winnies wasn't even mentioned in their best burger contest, and yet he kept hearing rumors of Winnie's truly being the best in these parts.

Could it be true? Does Winnie's Tavern (1895 Burnett Boulevard) really serve the best burger in Wilmington?

It's definitely a dive bar, with obviously a loyal cliental. The beer bottle tops littering the sand and gravel parking lot tells a story of many a happy customer over the years. The hand painted sign hanging on the freshly fenced "courtyard" with red-umbrellaed picnic tables and fresh flowers tells me the people who run this place really care.

Old? Yes. Clean? Yes. Ambient in a kitsch-y kind of way? Absolutely. Even the women's bathroom has Sea Hags as a door label! But is the food good?

Paul describes the original Winnie's Burger as "massive, juicy and messy" all of which a good burger should be. But I hate wasting food, so I went with the intention of only eating half of the 8 ounce burger and saving or sharing the other half.

Obviously others have had the same struggle and Winnie's now offers the same amazing burgers in smaller portion. Two (4 ounce) burgers with choice of toppings, loaded with fries and two bottomless glasses of tea was a grand total of $13. The service was so outstanding, friendly and helpful, even with a $5 tip, lunch was only $18 for two! That, my dear readers, is almost unheard of save the fast food places.

For those of you in the area, trust me, the rumors of greatness are true! I was slightly skeptical and didn't want to have too high of expectations. But dang that is one fine burger they make at Winnie's.

For those of you not in the area, if you ever find yourself down this way, don't let the outside of the place keep you from enjoying truly the Best Burger in Wilmington.

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