I know it's been mentioned here before, but Angele in Napa serves an incredible burger. We had dinner there a couple of weeks ago at the suggestion of a burger-lover at the Pride Mountain tasting room. We asked him for his favorite burger in the valley, and he said Angele without missing a beat.
We showed up that night without a reservation, wearing jeans and rainboots, not realizing it was such an elegant place... beautiful low lighting in a cozy room with beamed ceilings and white tablecloths, candles, etc. We asked the hostess about whether there really were burgers there, and after she said yes, we decided to sit at the bar. Of course, the burger is not actually on the menu (at dinner anyway) but the bartender assured us that we could order it and that it was a local's secret. Nice list of wines by the glass and the cocktails looked incredible.
The burgers arrived, cooked perfectly medium-rare, definitely more than a half pound of meat, charred on the outside and really juicy in the middle. The blue cheese was a perfect topper, a generous crumble of it spilling all over the meat. The bun seemed to be homemade, and I'd have to say it was a perfect bun. So often it seems that the bun is the secret to a great burger... too bready and you lose the taste of the meat, too thin and it disintegrates in your hands. This bun had a bit of toastiness to it, but it was soft enough to let the meaty flavor shine through.
The accompanying pomme frites were exemplary as well... thin and very crispy.
We also ordered a lyonnaise type salad, which was just OK and a banana gratin for dessert that the bartender hyped but that we found overly rich and cloyingly sweet.
We will be back though for that outstanding burger.