There was a time not that long ago when having a burger on your menu was déclassé unless you were a diner. Jeremiah Tower led the trend to change that, at least in San Francisco, offering a burger at Stars, and now, almost thirty years later, we live in a city chock full of fancy burgers. We still have our share of great cheap burgers, too, most of which get held up against the standard bearer: In-N-Out. So, when it came to compiling a list of the 50 best in San Francisco (with a couple nods in the direction of Oakland and Berkeley), we actually found ourselves having to trim off some perfectly excellent hunks of ground beef — even a classic or two — in order to make room for the plethora of high-quality burgers you can now find across the city.
If your favorite didn’t make the cut, we’re sure we’ll be hearing about it. But keep in mind there was a lot of chewing and pondering involved in this survey, and our standards have now gotten pretty high. Take a look, but we would not recommend, in the interest of your cholesterol, attempting this at home — at least not without giving yourself at least a year.
Update: Here’s our top-five.