Photo Illustration by Tania Bou Samra

The ClassicsHouston

There’s No Classic Like the Classic Burger Joint


Burger joints are one of the most iconic landmarks a city can have. 

Perhaps no other genre better captures the culture of a city than one of those decades-old burger joints that continues to serve customers year after year.

For me, Lankford Grocery is that place in Houston. I feel that this restaurant explains where Houston is today, and the growing interest of this city compared to 60 years ago when it first opened. It reminds us of what was, rather than what is. I always admire a restaurant that remains tethered to its original character, yet somehow gets better with age.

My order has remained steadfast since I started going: Always a classic and an order of curly fries. I appreciate the quality of the burger and appreciate Lankford’s atmosphere each time I go. Its decor represents the nostalgia of the restaurant, from the year-round Halloween decor and old signage of the restaurant through the ages. The place still very much represents the Lankford family that has been behind it since day one.

In short, I think we need to continually remind ourselves that it isn’t about making the biggest “splash” — it’s about making a meaningful one that withstands the test of time. 


Aaron Bludorn is the owner and executive chef of Bludorn in Houston, Texas.