Burgers on the beach! I can’t think of a better salty combo. Hawaii is home to the fusion-friendly burger often blending Asian and Pacific rim inspirations into the American classic. Check out Honolulu’s Haute 5 favorite spots to chow down on burgers and fries.
1 The Counter
The California-born and bred burger chain was introduced to the island by former Lost star and Hawaii Five - O actor, Daniel Dae Kim. Kim and partner, local restaurateur, DK Kodama opened the convenient Kahala Mall location in spring '09. Build your own burger with more than 300,000 possible combinations to choose from or try a signature sandwich like the Purist or Old School. The burger of the month is often island-inspired such as the decadent furikake-crusted ahi burger. All combos can be perfectly paired with their delectable sweet potato fries or the 50-50, a serving of half fries and half onion strings. The sleek, cool counter and bar also serves up peanut butter, chocolate and vanilla shakes along with a solid selection of beers, cocktails and wine.
4211 Waialae Ave
2 Kua’aina Burger
Kua'aina Burgers landmark North Shore location is the choice spot to stop for lunch on the way to Waimea Bay. The intimate lanai is a prime place to people watch and get your “grinds on” before getting back into the water. Their shoestring fries are scrumptious and the ultimate accompaniment to the legendary burgers. Big, juicy charbroiled patties can be ordered with avocado, pineapple, chilies, your choice of cheese and an array of other add-ons. A beloved North Shore gem, “townie” fans were thrilled when Kua’aina Burgers opened a Ward Center location several years ago. The next time a Kua'aina craving kicks in, be sure to try their best-selling avocado burger.
3 Burgers on the Edge
As the first true couture burger spot to hit the isle, Burgers on the Edge is all about the gourmet burger. Build your own or choose from innovative options like the Thai-rific made with sweet chili sauce, Swiss cheese, bacon and crispy onion. If beef-less is your thing, order the Thanksgiving on a Bun. For vegetarians, the Plan B is perfection made with a panko-crusted veggie patty, Muenster cheese, tonkatsu sauce and sautéed onion. Add truffle, sweet potato or bacon fries to your edgy burger-of- choice and you've got a match made in heaven. And as if it couldn't get any better, feel free to BYO. Brought to you by well-known wine bar owner, Wes Zane, it's "Sideways" relived, if you will.
4 Honolulu Burger Co.
This local place prides itself in concocting “Hawaii-fied” burgers. Every signature fave has an Hawaiian twist like the Blue Hawaii burger with Haaula tomatoes, Maui onions, bacon and Gorgonzola cheese. Also find the Beach Boy with pineapple salsa and teriyaki glazed ham. The Kalua Pig Burger is like a luau-in-bun served stuffed with a Big Island range fed patty and the Korean Big Bang is oh-so innovative with braised Korean-style short ribs and kim chee slaw as accompaniments. Their house-made fries are built for dipping in blue cheese, garlic and truffle sauces. Old-fashioned shakes and floats are also on the menu.
1295 S. Beretania St
5 Teddy’s Bigger Burgers
It all started as backyard barbecue talk. Good friends Ted and Rich loved great burgers, but couldn’t seem to find any places that offered the usual fast food at a home-cooked quality. So, the duo created Teddy’s Bigger Burgers. The idea was to re-invent a ’50s theme with a simple menu of burgers, fries and shakes. Teddy’s uses 100 percent fresh chilled ground chuck. Burgers are hand-pattied every day and charbroiled to order. But, it's the sauces set this place apart. The super sauce is a sweet, tangy creation and the teriyaki sauce is the original recipe made from scratch. Extra crispy fries in spicy, garlic, chili or cheese are all choices to complement your burger as well as onion rings and tots. I, for one can’t resist indulging in a shake too when I stop into Teddy’s. The well-known extra thick shakes come in flavors like chocolate, vanilla, root beer, Dreamsicle and pineapple — even make it a malt if you wish.
Koko Marina Shopping Center
7192 Kalanianaole Hwy