If you’ve got the urge for the thickest, juiciest, freshest, most mouth-watering burger around, point your carnivore compass to R.F. O’Sullivan’s Pub, in Somerville, Massachusetts.
At O’Sullivan’s, they fire up the grill for about 400 pounds of hamburger every week. These burgers are big. Each belly-busting beast is a half-pound of fresh-ground sirloin. To cook a burger this thick and juicy takes patience, and about 20 minutes.
Richard Sullivan - Owner, R.F. O’Sullivan’s Pub: “People come in, and they get mad, but I explain to them, it’s not like your everyday place, it takes time to cook. And if you don’t like it, I say, ‘I’m sorry, there’s nothing I can do about it. You’re the one losing out.’”
There’s no shortage of selection at O’Sullivan’s. The menu offers over two-dozen types of burgers, all for about seven bucks.
Richard Sullivan: “We have every type of burger, that’s one thing we do... We have burgers with cole slaw on it, Cajun, we have honey mustard burger, Blue Cheese burger, I mean anything you want, we can basically make up.”
The Cape Codder is topped with fresh avocado and melted Swiss. The Black and Blue is a burger coated in fresh ground black pepper then grilled and topped with blue cheese.
It’s a rare restaurant that will still cook a burger rare, but O’Sullivan’s does it without fear.
Richard Sullivan: “We have people who just come in here to eat it rare. Most places now are hard to get a rare hamburger, I’m not afraid to serve it rare. Because I know, myself I eat it that way, I taste the meat myself, and I know it’s quality.”
Before any cook at O’Sullivan’s picks up a spatula, there’s one important lesson he must learn. Don’t squish the burgers!
Richard Sullivan: “That’s the number one rule, is when these chefs come in to cook I say, ‘Do not squish the burgers down. We’re known for a nice puffy burger.’ The way the meat is, if you squish it, like a lot of people do, you’re squishing out the juices, the flavors of it, which is the number one, do not do.”
If you don’t have a hankering for hamburgers, O’Sullivan’s offers other items like a Steak Tip Sub, Coconut Chicken Tenders, and even a Grilled Veggie Platter. But it’s the beautiful burgers that keep everyone smiling at R.F. O’Sullivan’s, a Phantom Gourmet, Hidden Jewel.
A whole book could (and should ) be devoted to pub burgers, but in our experience the one you’ll get at R.F. O’Sullivan and Son, a watering hole in Somerville and in Lynn Massachusetts, stands above all others. Actually, we shouldn’t say one - the menu lists a few dozen versions topped with all kinds of cheeses, bacon, onion, peppers, salsa, even sausage. Condiments aside, these are superior measures on the charcoal grill, inhaling maximum smoky flavor and remaining succulent enough to demand you tuck a napkin in your shirt collar before the first bite triggers a geyser of beefy juices.
M“R.F. Osullivan & Sons is the only way I travel. I use it every time!”
“The best Patty Melt ever. So cheesy and juicy!”
"We absolutely love this place, we are regulars. The people are very friendly, helpful, and food comes out perfect every time. They have such a large variety of burgers and other foods, you won't have to eat the same thing, but you'll find a favorite."
"Stop in last week after reading about it on Boston.com for lunch and it was AMAZING! I travel across the country for work and love BURRRGERS and R.F.'s was one of the best I have ever had! The service was fantastic as there was only the bartender covering the entire place (it is rather small tavern type set up so tables are limited. The menu is very diverse and the burger was cooked to perfection. When they say it takes 20minutes to cook, it does and waiting although tough at times was well worth it! Cannot wait to go back every time im in Boston. Not to mention the fries are jumbo fresh cut potatoes, the onion rings are okay, but the Burger is why you go to this hidden Boston Gem!"
"From this point forward change the way you feel about how the best burger in town looks, tastes and leaves you wanting more"
When asked about the best burgers in Boston the first one on the tip of his tongue was R.F. Osullivan