While McDonald's, Burger King, and Wendy's get the hairy eyeball for not being health-conscious, these little burger joints are given a pass. They're perhaps as unhealthy as traditional fast-food joints. A Smashburger All-American cheeseburger "big smash" is an eight-ounce Angus patty dolled up with condiments that clocks in at 768 calories. A McDonald's double Quarter Pounder features seven ounces of burger from who-knows-where, layered American cheese, pickles, ketchup, mustard, and onions for 740 calories. It eases my conscience that places like Smashburger and BurgerFi use higher-quality ingredients, but the burgers are no less artery-clogging.

It's also the lack of healthy options that will hurt these places as the trend fades. BurgerFi, however, is not likely to feel the pinch as much as others. Not just because the décor is a draw but because the chain can afford to park itself in the right places.

For fast-casual, though, BurgerFi's not cheap: A beer, a burger, fries, and a shake is $26.

Charm City's Big Sloppy: double meat, cheese, bacon, hash browns, and a fried egg. Click here for a Charm City slideshow.
Charm City's Big Sloppy: double meat, cheese, bacon, hash browns, and a fried egg. Click here for a Charm City slideshow.

Location Info



4343 N. Ocean Drive
Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, FL 33308

Category: Restaurant > Burgers

Region: Beaches

Charm City Burgers

1136 E. Hillsboro Blvd.
Deerfield Beach, FL 33441

Category: Restaurant > Burgers

Region: Deerfield Beach


BurgerFi, 4343 N. Ocean Drive, Lauderdale-by-the-Sea; call 954-489-0110. Also 6 S. Ocean Blvd., Delray Beach; call 561-278-9590. Visit burgerfi.com.

Charm City Burgers, 1136 E. Hillsboro Blvd., Deerfield Beach. Call 954-531-0300.

Up the road at Charm City in Deerfield, my friend Tricia gets a veggie burger and a salted caramel milk shake. I settle for the good ole cheeseburger and a beer — all for 20 bucks. Here, we get to drink at a bar, like adults.

"This is pretty good for a veggie burger," Tricia says of her double stack that's coated in what looks like bird seed and tastes slightly sweet and nutty, layered with the usual accouterments of a traditional burger.

I enjoy mine, made with fresh-ground meat from local distributor K&G Brothers. The double patties are layered with American cheese, tomato, lettuce, and red onion. Though it's not drippy with juice as I like it, the burger is "under" — a little red — and delicious. Did I mention this burger is only $5.25?

Click here for a behind-the-scenes BurgerFi slideshow by Christina Mendenhall.

And about that patty from BurgerFi? It's a gaping double with cheese, a finger-painting slurry of sauces, pickles, tomatoes, onions, and lettuce. Though the burger itself is dry and the bun is too charred, this assemblage cures a craving. I'm entertained by the absurdity of my burger. Despite that I like BurgerFi and many of the new burger joints that dot the South Florida landscape, it'll be awhile before I'll go back.

"You had enough?" asks Harmony as we rise to leave. For now, haven't we all?

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Also coming any day now, Hi Way Burger in Delray. On Southbound Federal, a few steps S of Atlantic (next to Philly Cheesesteak),


Personally, burgers are one of my favorite meals.  And considering it's the largest portion of the restaurant industry, I think the general population does not agree with the idea of this article.  If the demand for burgers was not growing, you wouldn't see chains expanding, new ones popping up, and the large majority of them all increasing their sales.  You mention one independent restaurant closing, and nearly a dozen new ones opening - that doesn't say demand is waning to me.


I don't think there are as many burger joints as Pizza joints, Sub Joints, coffee houses, beer joints and such, why pick on burgers- just to be significant? Nobody said eat a burger every day, try them find the best (BurgerFi works for me) and enjoy one every now and then. I never understand why people pick on an industry for sport.

Fat Hand
Fat Hand

Agree completely Melissa. And the few places that don't serve burgers all have a selection of sliders. Enough with the fucking burgers and sliders!


What's needed is a TUMS burger.  I get acid reflux just reading about the menu items at these burger joints.