Head To The Vortex For The Best Burgers In Atlanta!
Disclosure: I was provided a meal at no cost to facilitate this review, but as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own!
I don’t know about you, but when it comes to picking a destination to visit, the food scene is a big factor. What can I say, we are a family of foodies. Which would explain why I drove 4 hours from Nashville to Atlanta for a burger. (Okay, that wasn’t the only reason, I also went to see my awesome cousin and shop at Ikea, but it was still a big reason). If you have heard of The Vortex before, it might have been from Man Vs. Food on Food Network. Which is where we heard of it! After mentioning seeing them on TV I asked my cousin who lives it Atlanta if the hype was real. She agreed it was so I contacted Michael who is one of the 3 owners and asked to stop by while we were in town. Lucky for me he said yes, and even agreed to sit and eat dinner with us and tell us all about this awesome restaurant!
So here is how our visit to The Vortex went:
First of all, there are 2 locations, 1 in Little 5 Points (The famous Skull entry) and the one in Midtown, which is where we ate. Something you NEED to know before you go, it’s going to be packed. And unless you are cool enough to eat dinner with the owner (like us haha!) you are going to wait. Trust me when I say it is absolutely worth the wait.They don’t take reservations. You will also need to have your ID ready, because The Vortex is 21 and up only. Yep, if you’ve got little ones in tow, this place is not for you. It is a bar and it has a bar atmosphere. If that isn’t your thing, I would say look elsewhere, but if you do, you are missing out on some awesome food.
The Vortex is all about awesome burgers. That’s not to say they don’t have other delicious menu options, but if it is your first time I highly suggest you get a burger. Everyone at our table ordered a different burger so we could try a little bit of everything. And every single thing we tried, right down to the locally brewed beer, was amazing.
Here is all the amazingness we had:
MAC ‘N’ CHEESY-CHANGA-They stuff a flour tortilla full of macaroni ‘n’ cheese and barbecued pulled pork. Then they deep fry it, slice it for sharing, top it with a drizzle of their famous Cheesy-Cheese Goo, and serve it with a side of barbecue sauce. Yes, you read that correctly. And it was a-maze-ing.
Michael Cristro- A savory and sweet griddled sandwich served on thick sliced white toast filled with turkey, ham, bacon, Swiss cheese and chipotle cream cheese, topped with sweet & spicy jalapeño jelly. Yum! This is what Michael, the owner, ordered. I wonder where they came up with the name?
KA’MANA WA’NA LEI’YA Burger– This is what I got. And I’m telling you, no other burger will ever compare. Topped with our tiki-tastic chipotle cream cheese spread, three slices of bacon, and spicy pineapple jalapeño jelly, served on thick sliced toast. The flavors were out of this world good (and a bit messy, but I’m not complaining) and the burger was cooked to perfection.
The Fat Elvis Burger- This is what my husband ordered, and had picked out 2 weeks in advance. He wasn’t disappointed. Slathered with a King-sized helpin’ of smooth peanut butter, bacon, and fried bananas. Now that’s what we call Takin’ Care of Business. I had no idea PB on a burger could taste so right.
The Steakhouse- This is what my friend who traveled with us ordered. Topped with sautéed onions and mushrooms, Swiss and cheddar cheese, and a super-secret Vortex steak sauce. Sheer sirloin perfection. Can’t go wrong with a classic combo like this!
While munching down on our food we had a chance to talk to Michael about The Vortex. Why did he start the restaurant with 2 of his siblings? Easy, so he wouldn’t have to get a job. His staff have a big part in picking new menu items, and a lot of the strange and cool decorations that are in The Vortex where brought in by early clients. There is one particular direction at the Midtown location that is….how do I say this…something you will want to stop and appreciate. I won’t ruin the surprise, but I will tell you it is NC-17 so make sure you have a sense of humor ;).
We ended our meal with a dessert of a Salted Caramel shot which tasted as good as it sounds! This group of people rock my socks!
The Final Verdict:
Well, if you haven’t gathered yet that we all loved The Vortex Bar and Grill and if you are looking for the best burger in the ATL, now you know where to go. I want to personally thank Michael for having us, and I can’t wait to stop back by when we head back in to town!