Burgerjoints, 22 in AL
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When you've had enough turkey and you're looking for a place to take out-of-town guests with plenty of local flavor, a greasy-spoon restaurant known for its burgers is a great choice.
The list of hole-in-the-wall burger joints in Alabama includes an eclectic mix of settings. From drug stores and groceries, to ice cream shops and even a hot dog eatery, these out-of-the-way places mostly gained their reputations through word of mouth.
One restaurant, though, gained its fame in the lyrics of a Jimmy Buffett song reportedly written about its burgers. Pirates Cove in Josephine in Baldwin County, established in 1917, is said to be the inspiration for the song "Cheeseburger in Paradise," although Buffett has referred to another hamburger joint, The Dew Drop Inn in Mobile, as the inspiration for the song.
Pirate's Cove is run by a third generation of the family that established it, the Muellers. "It's in our blood and there's nothing we'd rather do," the Mueller brothers wrote on the restaurant's website.
One iconic burger joint, Big Spring Café, was housed in a boxcar in downtown Huntsville when it opened in 1928. It was later moved to Governors Drive, where it still serves its legendary Greasy Burgers.
Some eateries are known for unique cooking methods, like C.F. Penn Hamburgers in downtown Decatur, which deep fries its burgers. According to its owners, Elvis Presley developed a hankering for the burgers and would often send a driver to pick up a bagful.
Chefs at Dub's Burgers in Athens, established in 1961, make a beef patty mixed with pork and bread, then slather it in slaw, ketchup, mustard and onions before topping it with a bun.