Live from New York, it’s Saturday Night Cheeseburger! Starring Donovan’s Pub and featuring the Ready for Prime Beef Player, Marty Wombacher. And now, please welcome your host, all the way from Woodside, NY...Donovan’s Pub!
I've decided with this blog and since I've got some more time on my hands since I'm not working at the moment, that I'd start venturing out of my Manhattan comfort zone more often and check out things in the outer boroughs. So today we're going to a classic bar in Queens, which has been around since 1966 and the name of the place is Donovan's Pub. They're supposed to have one of the best cheeseburgers in the Tri-State area, so I have to try it. But before we begin the journey, I need to stop in here.
The Powerball is over 300 million bucks, so I needed to play a few numbers. If one of these cashes in, we'll really be tripping here!
Okay, we're Queens-bound and it's down into the subway we go!
Here's my GPS guide to get us there. Do you think that maybe I need to upgrade it?
And through the magic of the internet, you missed out on waiting over a half an hour for the F train, then having to transfer to the 7 train and getting on the wrong train heading in the opposite direction, getting out, getting on another 7 train that got delayed during service for twenty minutes and over an hour and a half later, here we are in Queens. I may never leave Manhattan again. I hope this cheeseburger is worth the rotten trip I took to get here.
Okay, things are looking better. Here's Donovan's Pub and it looks like a great old school bar.
We'll see if that sign lives up to its boast!
It's a great looking bar. Nice and dark, lots of wood and plenty of seats at the bar. Let's settle in!
And here's bartender Jess. A great bartender and a friendly fellow! Jess has been bartending here since Donovan's opened in 1966! He's served politicians from Mayor Koch, to Gary Hart, to Mayor Bloomturd Bloomberg. He told me the most infamous former regular was Bernie Goetz, the man who became known as the "Subway Vigilante" in 1984.
Pat and Danny were seated at the end of the bar. Friendly guys and regulars who welcome newbies like myself at the bar as if you had been coming here your whole life. It's a real friendly neighborhood atmosphere in here.
A shot of the long wooden bar from the back end. Note the colorful stained glass window at the front.
Candle-lit dining tables line the wall opposite the bar.
Here's the dining area in the back of the bar.
It's a comfortable atmosphere in here complete with a working fireplace. Fire!
And behind these doors...
Is yet another dining area. Jess said they open this up if it gets crowded and you can also rent it out for private parties. I love the bookcases in here!
And when I return to the bar, a place setting has been put down. Looks like we'll find out if they live up to their boast soon!
And here we go! The burger is huge and so are the steak fries that come with it.
Okay, I've assembled the burger and now it's time to try and take a bite out of this monster!
It's juicy, filled with flavor, the bacon is crispy and delicious and the bun is bakery fresh. Definitely one of the best burgers I've ever had and it was well worth the trip. Not only for the cheeseburger but to experience Donovan's Pub, a true old-school joint.
Okay, the plate is clean and yeah, I eat ketchup but I don't like tomatoes, so sue me!
And it's out the stained glass wooden doors we go...
As the sun sets on Queens.
And by the time I get back to Manhattan, night has fallen. Goodnight everybody, thanks for tripping out with me and we'll see you tomorrow.
I had the bacon cheeseburger and it was one of the best cheeseburgers I’ve ever had. It was a half pound burger with American cheese and a generous amount of bacon on a toasted bun. And the bun was bakery fresh and delicious. The sign outside of the pub reads, "#1 Rated Hamburger in New York" and they certainly live up to it.
Donovan’s Pub has been on the block since 1966 and it’s a classic Woodside joint in Queens, New York. In addition to the bacon cheeseburger, Donovan’s menu also features: Shepherd's Pie, Crab Cakes, Chicken Pot Pie and a Hot Open Turkey Breast served over homemade stuffing with gravy, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes and vegetable of the day. You can eat at the front bar or at one of the dining rooms in the back. Some things in Queens have changed, luckily Donovan’s remains the same.
Four Wimpy's, one of the best in all the boroughs!
57-24 Roosevelt Ave.
Further Reading: The Fat Chick Diaries, The Burger Beast and Queen’s Buzz.
Bonus Gumby Video!
TWM reader Matt sent in this video he shot of he and his roomate, Brandon, decked out in a Gumby outfit on a subway ride bound for Times Square. Check it out, it's a classic! Thanks for sending it in, Matt!