Last weekend, my roommates and I took a trip to visit our ex-roomie Lauren, who has since moved back to her hometown of Atlanta. We did plenty of sightseeing and touristy things. And any trip to Atlanta merits a stop at The Varsity—an old-timey drive-in/diner that’s been serving burgers, hot dogs, fries, and onion rings since 1928. Despite the large parking deck and the expanded dining room (lined with rows and rows of booths/tables) they manage to provide comforting signature flavor and a stepping-back-in-time experience.
I ordered the Chili Cheeseburger with a side of Onion Rings and a Varsity Orange Drink.
Wow this is making me hungry again.
The vintage, nostalgic atmosphere is what truly makes the experience, but the food is absolutely heartwarming. The onion rings were to die for. Crunchy, warm, comforting, and the onion didn’t do that annoying thing where it slides out of the batter once you take the first bite. Each crunchy nibble had just the right amount of sweet, sizzling onion. They’ve really got that one down in the 80+ years they’ve been around. And the orange drink was a fresh complement to my greasy indulgences.
The one thing I would have liked would have been a better burger. The patties were sort of thin, which I don’t really mind, but the chili was so-so. Honestly, I think the best chili cheeseburger I’ve had has to be at Tommy’s in Los Angeles, where the chili delivers heat and depth, and it is topped with chopped onions, a pickle, and a thick tomato slice… oh goodness. Now I’m salivating!
But anyways, don’t let this deter you from stopping in. Just be sure you know what you want by the time you reach the front of the line—they don’t appreciate any dilly-dallying!