Best Cheeseburgers in Honolulu

I love cheeseburgers. That’s a pretty well-known fact in my family. But even though I love them, I can’t say I’d be willing to travel a long distance to find a cheeseburger I can enjoy. In the case of cheeseburgers, “best” often loses out to location, which follows the Location + Branding + Trust formula I’ve mentioned many times in local search presentations.

The best cheeseburger I had while in Honolulu was at a Bar & Grill on the Ilikai Hotel property, one hotel over from the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, where I had been staying for a PubCon Paradise search conference.

avocado pineapple bacon cheeseburgerAvocado Pineapple Bacon Cheeseburger

Taken with my iPhone 4s, the above photo shows a cheeseburger made with green lettuce, avocado, grilled pineapple, onion rings, onions, bacon, Swiss cheese, a hamburger patty and a sesame seed bun. Thick cut salted french fries were served on the side.

I consumed more than a few burgers while in Honolulu for the week. I made all my choices the old-fashioned way, relying on what was found during walks throughout the city, versus using my mobile phone or suggestions from online review sites.

grilled mushrooms hamburgerGrilled Mushrooms Hamburger with side of Onion Rings

This hamburger with grilled mushrooms, green peppers, and tomatoes, was ordered by my wife. It came with onion rings on the side. I didn’t eat any of it but it looked like quite a tasty burger as well. After seven days of being in Hawaii, my spouse got use to me photographing nearly every food and drink item that was served to us, but now I have plenty of Hawaii related food photos for blog posts.

Pretty much every burger I had while in Hawaii was cooked medium to well done, and I’m not even sure how many places asked how I’d like my burger done, perhaps that’s the islands default way of cooking beef. I had a few Loco Moco burgers while on Oahu, I have to say those were my favorite overall. But cheeseburgers on a bun (with a nice pale ale or lager on the side) are my standard food fair, and Honolulu cheeseburgers didn’t disappoint. Take a look at it stacked up.

grilled pineapple bacon avocado onion ring cheeseburgerGrilled pineapple bacon avocado onion ring cheeseburger

Stacking the cheeseburger is a combination of art, skill and personal preference. In this case I started with the bottom sesame seed bun and added catsup. Stacked in order was the following: beef patty, cheese, bacon, avocado, grilled pineapple, onion ring, sliced tomato, sliced onion, another layer of catsup, and the top sesame seed bun. The lettuce never made it on the burger.

A nearby couple was laughing as I shot this photo and they were wondering how I was going to manage to consume this burger. Some people may opt to slice it down the middle, but my preference is to simply have extra napkins on hand, and just go for it. In my experience, avocado is typically the most slippery, and good finger control is required in order to keep all burger fixings in order during consumption.

I paid about 16 bucks for this burger, and about 45 bucks for the entire meal, which included beverages (no beer). Our server Michelle was friendly and attentive. Outdoor patio featured a nice breeze coming off the marina. It was a good experience overall. For those interested, you can order burgers like this at the Ilikai Hotel & Suites – (808) 949-3811 – 1777 Ala Moana Blvd, Honolulu, HI 96815.

Update: After searching online, I discovered there is a website for the Ilikai Bar & Grill, which includes an online menu. The burger I had was the 5-0 Burger.