Miamisburg, OH 45342 937.847.2442 website
With all the pomp and circumstance around some restaurants these days, you don’t think much of an old-timey wagon parked in downtown Miamisburg, but it actually houses one of the oldest restaurants in Dayton. The Hamburger Wagon has existed in this south Dayton suburb for 100 years, and the locals swear by its excellent, delightfully simple menu. You don’t stick around town for a century without making a few friends, and every time I’ve encountered the wagon (or its food truck counterpart which can be found about town) I am always struck at how many people line up for the place. The Hamburger Wagon is a local tradition.
Since 1913, the Hamburger Wagon has been honing the craft of the hamburger, which would mean this place began slinging patties barely a decade after the legendary staple made its way into American culture.
In fact, there are exactly two items on the menu: A single burger, and a double burger (a drink or a bag of chips are options, too.) The burger’s designed to be delightfully simple: “No stinkin’ cheese or sloppy sauces” here: the slider-style burger is a fresh ground beef patty topped generously with salt, pepper, onions and pickles. And it’s a thing of magic. It’s is grilled over a propane range until it’s crispy on the outside and just at a well-done cook. The burger isn’t too big either, so it’s easy to grab two or three in a sitting, and they’re addictive. Simple. It’s a flavor that has easily withstood the test of time, and better off than many of the more elaborate burger creations that have come since it was created.
The wagon should also be known for its local activeness, many Miamisburg natives frequent the place and it’s often found in local events, such as neighborhood “cruise ins” and other small-town style celebrations. These days it can be found in some of the local street festival circuits too. One way or another, this is a must-try Dayton classic. I highly suggest trying Hamburger Wagon at least once…if you can stop at just one.
- The burger wagon has a mobile food truck which comes around fairs occasionally.
- The menu has exactly one item: a burger.
- There are also a lot of local happenings on their website if you’re interested in the local culture.