The Burgers of Wisconsin
I was up in the Madison area late last summer to start the weekend off on a Friday and was finally able to check out another well known and much loved WI burger place due to the timing. With this being the end of May which is National Hamburger Month and also Memorial Day, I thought now was the perfect time to post about this All-American Hamburger stand serving one of the great 'Burgers of WI'. Since it was a Friday I was able to make a pit stop in Lake Mills while en route to Madison. Lake Mills which is pretty much in between Milwaukee and Madison on the map. The Lake Mills VFW American Legion Post #67 is yet another seasonal summertime shack selling burgers along the sidewalk in the state. If you follow this site, live in or 'Travel Wisconsin' you know what I'm talking about.
A line starts forming around 11a and rarely goes away the rest of the day
I had never heard of this place when I was at school in Madison otherwise I would have been there. However they are only open on Friday's from May thru October. They open at 10a and close when the burgers run out, usually around 7 or 8p. You know they are open or closed when the American flags seen in the picture below are hoisted. Just like Pete's Hamburger's which were previously featured on chibbqking, the menu is limited and burgers are ordered "with" or "without" which are the onions filling Main street with a pungent aroma. The only difference from Pete's at the Post is that cheeseburgers are available. Its been this way since 1926 when they used to be sold out of a cart across the street in the park. The sidewalk stand was built in 1950. Freshly ground chuck patties are delivered every Friday morning along with a 50 lb bag of onions. Water and cans of pop along with T-Shirts are your only other options.
Lake Mills, WI
I arrived at the stand a little before 11a that Friday. It was easy to find, just follow the highway exit to Lake Mills and it takes you right into town onto Main street. Roll your windows down and you'll smell the onions and when you see a line along the sidewalk with some American flags waving in the wind, you'll know your there. The people making the burgers are Vets and volunteers who love to make the burgers for the people of the town who have eating them for generations on end. Although these burgers are pretty basic they are full of greasy flavor.
The menu and your choices (click pic to enhance)
Locals call these sliders but they are about the same size as a McDonald's cheeseburger so I wouldn't call them that, since it was early I only ordered two, both cheeseburgers "with". The patties are deep fried (yep!) and from what I was told by the guy next to me they are seasoned with only black pepper after they come out. The onions are chopped and cooked to a perfect translucent color and are as potent as you will find. If I've learned anything about seasonal Wisconsin burger stands its that they are all experts in the onions department. Along the side there are bottles of ketchup and mustard and all the napkins you need which you're going to need because these things are greasy. When I took one out of the bag in the butcher paper it was already soaked thru. They packed quite the punch and although I wasn't hungover I knew that these would be the perfect remedy for one. The burger was in my mind the rest of that day and has come back quite a few times since. I need to get back there one Friday this summer. Good stuff indeed. Check them out.
cheeseburger "with" from the Lake Mills VFW Post
American Legion Post #67 Hamburger Stand*
133 North Main Street
Lake Mills, Wisconsin 53551
*Seasonal and open Friday's only (May-Oct.)