When it comes to burgers in the 109, two local burger joints battle to be called the best. Charley’s Old Fashioned Burgers and Dutch’s Burgers have different approaches to the burger business. It is impossible to pick a clear winner, but comparing the two provides some interesting differences.
Charley’s Old Fashioned Hamburgers was established in 1991 and is named after owner Charley Bell. According to Michael Smith, a three-year employee at Charley’s, the restaurant tends to attract people who have been in the neighborhood for awhile and TCU students. Smith said Charley’s has become something like a local landmark, and the homemade quality is what makes Charley’s unique.
“We make our own seasoning, everything is homemade. Our homemade lemonade is the best around,” Smith said.
In addition to the homemade items on the menu, the painted picnic tables outside of Charley’s contribute to its laid back atmosphere and make up the majority of the seating. There is a window outside where customers can place their order.
The menu features several specialty burgers, including the popular “project X” and the avocado burger. Smith said his personal favorite is “project X,” which is a burger patty cooked with Tabasco sauce, then covered in fried onions, jalapenos, and cheese. Charley’s menu also includes other items, such as hot dogs, sandwiches, and salads.
The Basic Burger: Charley’s basic burger is one-third of a pound patty on classic buns served in a basket with hand-cut fries.
Price: Burger+Fries = About $8
Dutch’s, named after former TCU head football coach Leo “Dutch” Meyer, was established in 2007 and is located on South University Drive. The large front windows allow customers to enjoy the view of the TCU campus, while also inviting passers-by to come in. The restaurant’s white tin ceilings and large wood tables give the interior a laid back and welcoming feel to it. The indoor seating allows for a capacity of about 100, and there is also an outdoor patio in the back with picnic tables.
While Dutch’s is located right next to TCU, the restaurant attracts a variety of customers, not just college students. From business lunches during the day, to family-friendly in the afternoon, to college students at night, Dutch’s is a neighborhood spot that attracts different customers.
The menu is diverse and offers more than just traditional burgers. Customers have the option of substituting the traditional beef patty for a chicken breast or veggie patty. Dutch’s also offers hot dogs, Frito pies, chicken strips, and several other “bar food” options.
They are best known for the bacon bleu cheeseburger, which Texas Monthly named No. 8 best burger in Texas, said Dutch’s manager Kay Greenlee.
One thing that sets Dutch’s burgers apart from others is the sweet-sourdough buns, which come from Houston, Texas.
The Basic Burger: Dutch’s basic burger is a quarter pound patty served on sweet-sourdough buns in a basket with a choice of hand-cut fries, “tator” tots, or onion rings.
Price: Burger+Side = About $8
Charley’s Old Fashioned Hamburgers
4616 Granbury Road
Hours: Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Sunday 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Dutch’s Burgers & Beer
3009 S. University Drive
Hours: Monday – Thursday 11 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Friday – Saturday 11 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Sunday – Closed