The Eats: Zippy's Giant Burgers, 9614 14th Ave. SW, 763-1347, White Center. Hand crafted burgers, hand cut fries, vintage sodas, retro diner vibe.
The Deets: After a recent move from its former home in Highland Park, Zippy's Giant Burgers continue to do brisk business at the new location in White Center, though not with vegetarians. Burger diehards rave about Zippy's juicy patties, hand ground meat, and fixin's, but there's little for a herbivore to love here other than sweet potato fries and Rae's Black Bean Veggie Burger. But whoa there--we'll get to that.
Peta-approved Zippy's is not, but the restaurant's new home at 14th and Roxbury is sparkling clean, the service is genuine, and there's a good selection of bottled and canned beers to sip while you wait for your meal--and vintage burger memorabilia to chuckle over (though the passage of years still hasn't helped Mayor McCheese, who's just as creepy now as you remember as a kid). The Formica and chrome dinettes and pinball machines drive home the '50s diner look.
The Beets: In 2010 and 2011, Zippy's won Seattle Weekly's Best Veggie Burger and Best Burger: Non-Beef awards, and such high praise in burger-land around here (in addition to word of mouth acclaim from a handful of committed carnivores I know) can not be underestimated.
Damn it, they're right. In the midst of meat-manic Zippy's, the vegetable-based burger is supreme. It was rich, smoky, and greasy, with a firm bite and straight-from-the-griddle crisp. The smoked cheddar I opted for, along with a generous slathering of Zippy's sauce (Thousand Island dressing and chopped pickles, I'm told) added nicely to the charred flavor. Rarely do I want to nap immediately after eating, but that's exactly what I felt compelled to do after I gave up attempting to finish the last bite. As of this writing, I haven't eaten anything in nearly 17 hours (minus 7 for sleeping), but I'm still well-fueled by the burger's massive hold in my gut (thank you, yoga pants!).
The Tweet: While most of the menu fails the vegetarian, Rae's Black Bean Burger--and sweet potato fries, if you're truly famished--is a tasty beacon for any herbivore stranded in Zippy's meaty waters.