Saturday, April 16, 2011

Burgh'ers (Harmony)

Last weekend I had a sudden burger craving (probably fueled by China Millman's Post-Gazette article featuring the new burger bars in town).  I wasn't craving just any burger though - I wanted a big, fat, juicy beef burger.  You see, I hadn't had a beef burger since my first (and last) visit to Five Guys in DC in July 2009.  Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the burger, but quite literally while my body was still digesting that meal, I went to see the Oscar-nominated documentary Food, Inc. and my life hasn't been the same since.  Without going into too much of the gory detail, I pretty much swore off ground beef right then and there unless I was sure that the restaurant ground their own beef or that the beef was grass-fed instead of grain-fed.

And just like that, no more beef burgers for me.

So you can imagine my excitement a little while ago when I found out about the new burger joint, Burgh'ers, in Harmony through a news article about it having been deemed the best burger in Pittsburgh.  I was excited because Burgh'ers uses ingredients from local farms and their beef is local, organic, and grass-fed.  In other words: ground beef I CAN eat!  So Burgh'ers came to mind immediately when the I felt like my tummy could use a long-overdue beef burger.

I hopped into my car and drove up to Harmony, which is a quaint little area about a 15-minute drive north of Cranberry Township.  The restaurant is located in Creekside Plaza on Perry Highway, although you can't see the restaurant from the road as the strip mall doesn't face the street, so it's good to keep the name of the plaza in mind while searching for the restaurant.  The atmosphere at Burgh'ers is casual and low-key but pleasant at the same time, with its walls painted bright green and its menu scrawled on a gigantic chalkboard behind the cashier.  Most of the burgers are named after Pittsburgh's neighborhoods (like the Shadyside, the Bloomfield, or the Polish Hill), but I decided to go with the Mexican War, which is a fiery burger with roasted green chillies, avocado, tomato, chedder cheese, and cilantro:

Mexican War at Burgh'ers
The Mexican War ($9.99)

And this thing was hot alright!  But more importantly, tasty.  What an interesting combination of flavors!  Everything was cooked just right.  The patty was juicy but not too greasy, the buns were soft and warm, and even the fries were great.  I cleaned up the entire plate, and if you know how petite I am, you'd know this is quite a lot of food for me.  But I ate it all because it was so good!

The restaurant was pretty busy when I got there, and it was absolutely packed by the time my burger was served.  I was actually hoping to take advantage of Burgh'er's free wifi and get some work done, but decided against it because I didn't want to take up a seat if I wasn't eating.  As I was close to being done with my meal, the little boy sitting at the table behind me came up and asked if I was a reporter, which I thought was so cute.  I got into a conversation with the nice parents and turns out they decided to try Burgh'ers after reading China Millman's article (and Mr. and Mrs. Nice Parents, if you're reading this: Hello!).  I didn't stick around long enough to find out if they liked their burgers, but I'm really glad that this little local joint located way beyond the North Hills is getting so much attention.  It is also BYOB, which is another plus.

I had thought that my visit to Burgh'ers would satisfy my burger craving, but if anything, it seemed to have intensified it!  If they had been open the following day on Sunday, I just might have made a repeat trip up there.  I guess it was probably best for my waistline that they weren't open! :)  I definitely see more burgers/Burgh'ers in my near future, and I'm very happy to have found another restaurant in town that is committed to supporting local agriculture.

Restaurant info:
100 Perry Highway, Harmony, PA 16037
(724) 473-0710
On the web:

Burgh'ers on Urbanspoon