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Portland, OR – Hamburger Mary’s

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Hamburger Mary's - Portland - Exterior

Hamburger Mary's - Portland - Exterior

HM’s is a smallish ‘national’ chain, been around for quite awhile, not sure really where they started, and couldn’t get any information from their headquarters home page, as my computer says “this site may be the home of malware.”   Well, we don’t want that, do we?

A bar/restaurant targeted towards a gay audience, HM’s is open in about ten cities across the US, and is currently seeking new franchisees.  They have just reopened in Portland, and I say “reopened” because apparently they were here years ago, and closed.   The new joint has new owners, and is in the heart of Old Town, on 5th, just off Burnside.

They have a limited menu of burgers, salads, and a few sandwiches, tho the menus at HM’s vary by location.  Some locations offer complete meals, some offer pizza, some Sunday brunch, but burgers seem to be at the core of each location.

I visited on Monday, at noon “straight up” (har har), and in addition to me, there was a table of two diners, and a group of about 20 people at another table, like an office outing or some such.    When I saw the large group, and that there was a waiter hovering at that table, I quickly grabbed another waiter, scanned the menu quickly (tho I knew in advance what I would probably want) and ordered, instructing the server to “please get my order in before that large table!”  We both laughed, although her’s may have been a little forced.   People, and especially Mrs. BurgerDogBoy, say I can be a little intimidating at times.  WTF?  Moi?

I ordered the “Black and Blue” burger, which, like at most establishments that offer a product by the same name, is a burger dusted with Cajun blackened seasoning, and dotted with blue cheese or blue cheese dressing on top.   HM’s also had a couple of strips of bacon, shredded lettuce, and a couple of pickle chips.

I upgraded the included side to onion rings, a very respectable-sized order and a good value at a buck more.  The burger is a half-pound, not hand formed, but good flavor in its own right.  There appeared to be very little shrinkage, meaning you are biting into a lean cut.   I would describe the grind as “medium”, not too coarse, not too fine, which is the way I personally prefer.

I really liked the blue cheese topping/dressing.  Too often restaurants skip on this by just slathering some running salad dressing on the patty, but HM’s had a smooth dressing with ample chunks of real blue in it.

I personally would have liked more pickles, but that’s just me.   The roll is soft and fresh, maybe not quite firm enough to hold a burger and toppings of this weight.   Lettuce is shredded.

The onion rings were very good, thick cut, a nice breading.  My order was a tad overcooked, so the crunch factor was fairly severe.   But they are good.   Ketchup and mustard are on the table.

Will I return?  Sure.   Will it be a destination for me?   We shall see.   There are a lot of burger choices in the Old Town area, and I’ve tried most of them.   Hamburger Mary’s is an strong competitor, and tops almost all the other choices, with the possible only exception being “C Burger’, however they seem to be having trouble figuring out their hours and days.

So ends Monday lunch.   Oh, after thought.  Mary’s is one of those places where you find a giant sharp instrument stuck plunged deep into the burger.  These usually puzzles me.   Today I thought it was kind of Freudian.  LOL

Hamburger Mary's Black & Blue Burger w/ Rings

Hamburger Mary's Black & Blue Burger w/ Rings

Hamburger Mary's Burger Cross Section View

Hamburger Mary's Burger Cross Section View

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