Burger kings: Rigsby's

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

The juicy local

Rigsby's Grilled Hamburger, $12

Rigsby's epitomizes what makes the Short North special. It's sophisticated but not stodgy, it's smart but not pretentious, it's "Continentally" shrewd but Ohio-proud. Long a leader in locally sourced, scratch-made food, the versatile Rigsby's is a great place to dine on authentic and seasonal Italian cuisine or even an all-American burger.

The Attraction: Ohio-raised, grass-fed beef

Arriving on a sublime and prettily toasted olive-oil bun prepared in Rigsby's own bakery is a tempting, chubby patty with so much beefy oomph it'll make believers out of flavor doubters of lean, grass-fed meat. The revelatory and relatively healthier burger gets a dark and sexy salty crusting yet has a rare-side red and juicy center.

It's caressed by melted sharp aged cheddar and dressed in a chiffonade of romaine, good tomatoes, a whisper of red onions and a smattering of aioli effectively countered by mustardy and sweet DIY pickles.

Hot stuff on the side: The artfully proportioned burger comes with hand-cut, golden brown and crispy fries that look dainty but are potent with pure potato flavor.