Our quest to find Pittsburgh's best burger brought us to the popular local chain Burgatory, which prides itself on having organic and all natural ingredients, massive portions, and a devious selection of meats ranging from Wagyu beef to grass fed elk.
With multiple locations around Pittsburgh, including in PPG Paints Arena and Heinz Field, we hoped that the burger chain would shine where its major competitor BRGR fell flat. Luckily, after sampling our way around the Burgatory menu, we can most certainly say that it does.
Go for the Unusual Burger Combinations at Burgatory
During our most recent visits to Burgatory, we tried three different burgers- all from the chef selected menu.
The first was the Meat Your Maker, featuring dry aged Wagyu Beef, aged Gruyere, roasted tomatoes, field greens, and truffled shallot aioli. This burger is about as close to a gourmet version of the American standard as you can get (also on the menu), with the topping changes adding a few unique flavors into the mix.
Unfortunately, the flavors are subtle more than anything and the extra $4 for this burger over the regular option is likely a bit too much to justify.
Luckily for you, the true gems at Burgatory are the unusual burger options, like the Piggy Butter and Jelly and Elk Gone Wild.
Elk Gone Wild starts with a massive grass fed elk patty and is topped with smoked gouda, caramelized onion marmalade, bacon jam, and arugula tossed in roasted tomato vinaigrette. With ingredients like that you don't need me to tell you twice that this one is far superior than Meat Your Maker, and comes packed with powerful flavors that you wouldn't expect working together.
As much as I want to say that the elk burger was our favorite, I'd be lying. Piggy Butter and Jelly, the most outrageous burger on the menu- featuring a cajun dusted beef and bacon burger, candied bacon, bread & butter pickles, peanut butter, and habanero jelly, was the best.
This is one menu item that validates our theory of if it sounds crazy, it must be delicious. The burger itself has a strong pork flavor thanks to the addition of ground bacon, the candied bacon and habanero jelly make a very unique combination of sweet and spicy, while the peanut butter adds a textural creaminess that is unexpected (but appreciated).
When we return to Burgatory next, you can be certain on which ones we'll be ordering again.
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Don't Miss Out on the Alcoholic Milkshake
We started our visit to Burgatory out on a note of gluttony, so we decided to keep the trend going with the addition of a spiked milkshake, Grand-Dad's Secret, which has caramel and Old Grand-Dad bourbon added into the standard vanilla shake. The concoction had a fair bit of bourbon mixed in the whole way which is more than worth the extra $3 over the regular milkshakes, and the overall size was large enough for us both to split without issue.
Overall, the only downside with Burgatory is that the menu is on the pricier end of the spectrum, with many burgers topping out at about $14 and alcoholic milkshakes coming in at about $9. Although this is common pricing in the gourmet burger scene anymore, the sticker shock gets us every time.
Luckily for this growing chain in Pittsburgh, I'll gladly pay the price to enjoy their heavenly creations.
Burgatory has multiple locations throughout the city including in PPG Paints Arena and Heinz Field. The locations featured in this review include their Aspinwall and Robinson stores.