On a recent trip to Washington DC for the Freddie Awards, my family tried the Instagram-favorite Ghostburger and we were not disappointed.
Located in the upmarket Shaw neighborhood, Ghostburger is on a corner with ample seating both inside and on a heated patio.
Address: 1250 9th St NW, Washington, DC 20001
Phone: (202) 827-5237
What Is Ghost Burger?
Ghostburger is a small fast-food restaurant located in the heart of Washington DC that specializes in gourmet burgers. The restaurant has become hugely popular on social media due to its unique and delicious creations.
The burger joint offers a wide variety of burgers, from the classic beef burger (Ghost Burger) to more creative options like the Frenchie with crimini mushrooms, caramelized onions, mayonnaise, and bleu cheese. Those with intolerances will appreciate its gluten-free bun option. The restaurant also serves sides like onion rings and fries, as well as a variety of shakes and desserts.
What We Ordered
My family was able to find street parking and a table quickly inside. Guests can order from the counter or a QR code. While I generally loathe ordering from a QR code, the one that Ghostburger uses puts everyone ordering from the table (same QR code) on the same tab so one person can submit the order but everyone can see it. Parties can peruse the menu and pay together or separately and it was very easy to use.
Our party of four ordered:
- (2) orders of Crinkle-cut fries (one with cheese and one without)
- (1) La Hamburguesa (peanut macha, smoked tomatillo salsa, Oaxacan cheese, cilantro); double
- (1) Ghost burger (American cheese, red onion, pickles, spooky sauce)
- (1) Custom-built fried chicken sandwich
- (1) Spicy Fried Chicken (pickles, chipotle mayo, hot sauce)
The fries were seasoned well and came with spooky sauce, ketchup, and one order included “cheese” which was not cheese wiz but queso. Rather than drowning the crispy fries in the queso, it was served on the side for dipping or pouring. These were an absolute highlight. One order looks light but it’s enough to share.
La Hamburguesa reflected the Mexican roots of the restaurant (more of that later) and was well executed. I may have dipped in the queso as well; highly recommended.
The Ghost Burger was a classic all-American smash burger and lived up to the brand name billing.
The Spicy Fried Chicken sandwich was overly hot for the member of our party that ordered but many who are used to a Nashville hot would suggest more heat. I am sure the kitchen would oblige.
The custom fired chicken sandwich order was an attempt by my daughter to recreate a Chik-Fil-A sandwich.
Ghost Burger Origins
One of the managers, Mario, stopped by my table (and the others in the restaurant.) I asked him about the restaurant’s origin and he explained that it was borne of a need to keep workers from two other Mexican restaurants (Destino and Las Gamelas) employed during covid closures. It began as a “ghost kitchen” (a restaurant run solely for delivery services like Uber Eats, and DoorDash) as a stand-alone burger brand and then warranted its own location when the pandemic was over.
The total was about $65 with an automatic 15% automatic gratuity. There was table service (they brought our food, served us filtered water, refilled glasses, and bussed the table) but it was also part DIY. At a traditional sit-down restaurant, we would have tipped more for table service, if it is all DIY we would have tipped less so including 15% felt fair enough to me.
On a person-by-person basis, fries were split and even with the queso, it was just $3.50/person plus $10-14/burger. For a party of two getting out of a restaurant right now for $15 which is as good as Ghost Burger was, is an excellent value.
What do you think? Have you tried Ghostburger? Any other favorites in Washington DC we should visit the next time we are in the Capitol?