I hope no one objects to my starting a new thread for this post. I just didn't want it to get lost in the thread I started yesterday ( http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/... ) asking for recommendations of what to order for my first ever visit to R.F. O'Sullivan. While most responded to my inquiry, a few hounds took the opportunity to advocate their view that The Druid offers a better burger than O'Sullivan's. So I decided to take the challenge and try them both on back-to-back nights. (Before I continue, I also want to point out that there was an extensive recent discussion of burgers in Boston, which can be found here: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/... .)
Without further ado . . . the winner is . . . The Druid. It really was no contest. I very much enjoyed my O'Sullivan burger, as I reported in the above-referenced thread, but it wasn't (IMHO) best-of-Boston material. On the other hand, I had a much more visceral (in a good way!) reaction to The Druid burger. It was just delicious. Nicely charred, smaller than O'Sullivan's (again, in a good way; it wasn't small, just smaller than O'Sullivan's), and juicier than O'Sullivan's. I ordered it the way it's described on the menu -- lettuce, tomato, grilled onions, and mayo -- which is not how I normally would order a burger, but it was a delicious combination.
Other considerations: I did not try the fries at O'Sullivan because they had too many detractors, even among O'Sullivan fans. The Druid's fries, however, were delicious: fresh, hand cut, and nicely seasoned with salt, pepper, and (I think) fresh chopped parsley (I normally despise seasoned fries, because so many places use seasoning like that Cajun Seasoning crap, but these simply seasoned fries were delicious). Druid had a much more interesting beer selection than O'Sullivan. Both have decent neighborhood pub atmospheres. O'Sullivan obviously is much easier for parking.
But the bottom line for me is that this was not a close contest. It's hard to imagine going back to O'Sullivan when I know I can get The Druid burger right down the street. That said, next time I'll probably try their fish sandwich.
One last thought: O'Sullivan makes a great burger, and clearly has lots and lots of fans. I don't want to start a war between O'Sullivan fans and The Druid fans. I personally prefer The Druid. Lots of other people do too. But still others prefer O'Sullivan. If you haven't tried them, don't let us decide for you; rather, do what I did, try them both, and make your own decision.