This Is the Best Burger in America

America’s best burger can be found in the Windy City

There are few foods more quintessentially American than the burger. The simple sandwich of ground beef on a bun has limitless possibilites for creativity, and there are thousands of variations, from one end of the country to the other. And when done properly, there are few foods more delicious.

Every year, we set out to rank the 101 best burgers in America, and it’s never an easy process. Certain qualities are universal must-haves: high-quality beef, proper seasoning, well-proportioned components, and an overall attention to detail that many would call “making it with love.” After assembling a survey listing hundreds of burgers from around the country and sending it out to a panel of culinary authorities, one burger rose to the top: the one served at Chicago’s Au Cheval.

The beauty of the burger served here lies in its simplicity: two patties (or three, if you order a “double”) of ground beef topped with cheddar, Dijonnaise, and a few thin slices of pickles and served on a soft toasted bun from Chicago’s Z Baking. The patties have a perfectly brown crust, and every aspect of this burger is just about perfect. The line to get into this place stretches literally around the block every day, so owner Brendan Sodikoff (who will be bringing Au Cheval to New York at some point in the near future) is clearly doing something right. And to top it off, its fries are fried in lard, and are among America’s best. For our full ranking of America’s 101 best burgers, click here.