Best burger in Miami…so far!

by mary on August 24, 2013

Umami Burger: seriously great burgers and drinks in Miami Beach

I love a really great burger from time to time, and the greater Miami area has some great gourmet burger joints. Some favorites are Charm City Burger, Burger Fi, Shake Shack, and Quickie’s. I also like Elevation Burger because it’s got organic beef and it’s right by my house for a quick fix. But the best burger I’ve had in Miami so far has been from the new branch of the LA chain Umami burger. I’ve only been there once so far, but the Original Umami burger blew me away and I’ll be going back soon to try some other burgers. Good drinks selection, great service and really awesome truffle fries added to the experience…but the outstanding burger is what sealed the deal.

Umami burger has lots of locations in California but so far only two on the East Coast, one in South Beach and one in NYC. The location on Alton Rd in Miami Beach was a burger place before and the decor is the same, an old-fashioned look with a pressed tin ceiling and a marble-top bar.

Umami Burger: seriously great burgers and drinks in Miami Beach

Inviting bar

The menu has some salads and alternative burgers for the folks who are dragged to burger joints by meat lovers. They have also developed a special Cubano Burger just for the South Beach location, which is a burger version of the classic Cuban pressed sandwich. They rate the burgers on the menu for Umami flavor, Umami being the fifth flavor, along with salty, bitter, sour, and sweet.

Despite numerous tempting choices, including the truffle burger, the Royale, and the triple pork burger, I went for the Original first time around. The staff explained that their burgers run pink, which I love, so I ordered mine medium rare. It is so hard for me to actually get a burger as rare as I like them, but it was super rare!

Umami Burger: seriously great burgers and drinks in Miami Beach

The awesome The Original burger

Check the picture…not the most impressive looking burger, but the flavor is all in there! The meat, which they grind fresh in-house several times a day, was tender, juicy and full of flavor on its own. Then there were the perfect simple toppings that added that rich, savory umami flavor. The Parmesan crisp and the roasted tomatoes especially stood out, but you could definitely get the shiitake mushrooms and the caramelized onions. Everything was in balance…not too much of anything, one large party was perfect in this case. A very messy burger to eat…luckily the bun caught a lot of the juices.

Umami Burger: seriously great burgers and drinks in Miami Beach

Serious juiciness and umami!

I had also ordered truffle fries. I usually hate truffle fries…mostly of them are pretty bad…not very truffely. The fries here were excellent, thin and crispy, and the truffle flavor was pretty intense. It was layered on with both truffle salt and truffle cheese. I was pretty stuffed after my burger but still managed to finish those fries.

You can also get your fries with short rib and umami gravy…what?

Umami Burger: seriously great burgers and drinks in Miami Beach

Also great truffle fries…

What about drinks? Good stuff. Lots of cocktails and beers on draft. Even some sake… A very decent selection of wines for a burger place. The air conditioner was a bit on the fritz the summery Miami day I was there, so the reds were being served a bit warmer than usual. So despite the burger, I ordered a refreshing Spanish white, the Arindo Verdejo from Bodegas Shaya. It was perfect for the hot day and surprisingly it went really well with all those umami flavors on the burger. Sometimes the less obvious match just works.

The burgers are not cheap, between 11 and 15 dollars, but I’m still thinking of that burger two weeks later! I’ll be going back soon and I think I’ll go for the Triple Pork Burger, with bacon and chorizo ground in with the pork…seriously!

What’s your favorite burger place?


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