dicks12
A Dick’s Deluxe burger with fries and a shake — one of Bill G.’s favorites. Photo courtesy of Dick’s.

Bill Gates isn’t exactly a highly-regarded food critic. But for the decades he’s spent in the Seattle area, the Microsoft co-founder has certainly had a burger or two in the Emerald City.

billgates
Bill Gates speaks at the 2013 Microsoft shareholders meeting.

Now, he’s sharing his favorite spots to eat one. Gates recently told Wired that two Seattle burger joints stick out in his mind: Burgermaster and Dick’s Drive-In.

Gates said that “the name says it all,” when it comes to Burgermaster, and called Dick’s Drive-In “a classic.” He recommends the original Burgermaster and Fries or Dick’s Deluxe and Shake.

I’ve lived in Seattle for more than five years now and can attest to Bill G.’s choices — although I don’t think Burgermaster is anything special. But if the world was about to end and I could only eat one burger in Seattle, I might have to go with Red Mill — that bacon and those onion rings cannot be beat.

There are plenty of other options for burger-lovers in Seattle, from Uneeda to Li’l Woody’s to 8 oz. Burger Bar.

Seattleites: what are your favorites? Do you agree with Bill G.?

Comments

  • RunTheNumbers

    Dick’s is fine for very short-term, but a fantastic option is Rain City Burgers on Roosevelt. http://raincityburgers.com/

    • Joe

      Rain City is great. Enjoy it before the teardown.

  • Lawrence Lam

    has BillG actually been spotted in either?

  • David Blomstrom

    Remember when Bill Gates got his butt kicked in that huge antitrust lawsuit years ago? He appeared on “60 Minutes” in an “interview” at Dick’s; I think it was the one on 45th, just several blocks west of the University of Washington. It wasn’t much of an interview; the highlight was Tricky Dick…er, Bill…telling the interviewer he had just rediscovered how much he loved his wife. Sheez.

    In other news, the guy who owns Dick’s is a right-wing charter school advocate. Charter schools were recently legalized in Washington State – with Bill Gates’ help.

    As a former teacher with the Seattle School District, I have to wonder what Gates hopes to do with charter schools when he hasn’t done a damn thing to help our public schools. With Bill Gates, everything has a price tag, including children.

    • JimInAuburn

      Kind of glad to see the word “former” in front of your profession.

      • David Blomstrom

        …and the word NEVER in front of yours. ;)

    • Bebris Tsikhe

      You remind me of that guy who had cable access show about Kurt Cobain. The one who kept running for office, and showing up at the debates.

      • Bebris Tsikhe

        I guess I should stay on topic. I was always a fan of Dome Burger: http://eatdomeburger.com

      • David Blomstrom

        You remind ME of the average Seattle liberal. Speaking of which, when are they going to get around to making the movie Clueless in Seattle?

        • Guest

          David, I love you! You’re doing an awesome job of staying away from school-age children. I can’t believe schools would let a hateful, condescending, argumentative buffoon teach our —

          What’s that?

          Oh. Seattle Public Schools.

          Never mind. I can believe it.

          Thanks again, David. Every day you spend trolling liberals and bashing billionaires is a day you don’t spend violating my child’s mind.

          Thank you, David.

        • Bebris Tsikhe

          You got me completely figured out, Dave. I am the average Seattle liberal. Soy lattes, reusable bags, farmers markets, David Sedaris. Yup. Exactly.

  • davidds

    Only one of these places has a special connection with Windows – Burgermaster. In the original versions of Windows, the Burgermaster was a very special data structure that managed all the memory in Windows. A developer who used some of the original Windows debugging tools frequently saw this all important “Burgermaster” segment. You could spot the real developers when a smile came upon their face when pulling into Burgermaster for an interview lunch.

    • guest

      Yup, back in the day when MSFT was off of 520 (before the redmond campus we all know and love now) this was their regular lunch spot. You’d spot Bill and Steve there all the time. It’s a pretty safe bet that Bill hasn’t eaten a Burgermaster burger in 20+ years.

      • johnhcook

        I love Burgermaster!

      • Ryan Parrish

        I bet he has. Ever heard of a personal assistant?

  • Guest

    I’m with Taylor on this, Red Mill has some damn good burgers. The stack of bacon is always awesome.

  • Crook Ofraud

    i’d rather have kung pao shrimp and pot stickers and egg rolls and a mountain of rice for the same amount of calories and since I’m allergic to wheat I can’t have my favorite pasta and pizza because gluten free crap is horrible. I only puke and cough when I eat dairy though so I can still cheat on dairy queen every so often.

  • RobertinSeattle

    I’ve run into BOTH Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer pulling into the BurgerMaster in Bellevue late Saturday mornings among other places. I’m sure all these guys still enjoy being able to do regular stuff without a huge entourage of security and paparazzi trailing behind them. A local legend has it that Bill occasionally forgets his wallet and embarrassingly makes his way back later to pay for his meal!

    As for interjecting crap about Bill’s involvement with helping schools and education into this story, perhaps some people may want to look into the Gates’ long involvement with schools and donations. In his first efforts, it was reported that after simply donating millions to schools locally, Bill was finally enlightened by staff about what had actually happened to his money and why it had no direct effect: The system is so broken that donating money directly into the existing school system is like tossing your money down a bottomless well. It all keeps going in with nothing coming out. Why? Because our school system is so driven by other agendas that it clearly shows how the parties involved seem to have forgotten who their “customers” really are: The Students.

    Political correctness, protecting tenure rather than improving and advancing the quality of learning for students AND actually protecting those teachers who refuse to improve themselves for the betterment of education. Most teachers’ unions have done a fine job of blocking the real objectives of what schools should be providing to our children. So why would some “former” teachers want to stop charter schools if their goal is to provide a different approach to teaching kids? If charter schools are shown to work successfully, our old school system will be shown to be broken.

    Bill and Melinda Gates are in fact putting their money where their mouths are. And what are YOU doing to improve education? Or are you simply trying to preserve a broken status quo?

    • http://www.techmansworld.com/ Michael Hazell

      I guess they arrive with body guards, etc? If I ever ran into Bill Gates in real life I’d like to sit down and talk to him for at least a half hour :)

    • David Blomstrom

      Dude, I don’t know where to begin. EVERYBODY loves to bash teachers. So maybe you can explain what kind of drugs teachers took to make them so unlikeable. We don’t hear similar criticism of architects, software programmers or even soldiers. But it’s open season on teachers 24/7. Kind of sounds like propaganda, huh?

      You wrote, “Bill was finally enlightened by staff about what had actually happened to his money and why it had no direct effect: The system is so broken that donating money directly into the existing school system is like tossing your money down a bottomless well.”

      DUH…That’s EXACTLY the message I was broadcasting on my website and through my campaigns for public office for over a decade. And if I’m invisible, the school district’s unbelievable scandals certainly aren’t; they’re legendary. Do some research on the late pedophile judge Gary Little – I have a hunch Bill Gates knew him quite well. Is Bill Gates deaf, blind and dumb?

      “Bill and Melinda Gates are in fact putting their money where their mouths are.”

      No, silly, they don’t invest money in their mouths. They exploit children by investing it elsewhere.

      “And what are YOU doing to improve education? Or are you simply trying to preserve a broken status quo?”

      Ironically, Bill Gates represents the status quo. I offer solid ideas – many of them ridiculously simple and logical, actually – and Bill Gates really offers nothing. Yes, he gives the schools money, but as you yourself suggested, he hands it over to corrupt school boards. And like I said, the money really isn’t meant to improve anything, anyway.

      Bill Gates should stick to what he does best – rip off other people’s ideas so he can market crappy software that will quickly be eclipsed by Apple, Google and other reputable companies.

      • RobertinSeattle

        Good luck with your ongoing attempts for public office. With an attitude like this, we don’t have to wonder why no one’s been listening to your fantastic ideas whatever they might be. Instead of putting forth positive ideas, you’ve just spent your comments attacking others and their efforts while offering not one glimmer of something that you believe will work.

        As I said earlier, this post was nothing more than a fun post about hamburgers in Seattle that happened to mention Bill Gates. And no – I did NOT knock all teachers but instead pointed out how ridiculously unwieldy and self-serving the Teachers Union has been in protecting themselves, often at the cost of their “customers” the students. When was the last time a truly bad teacher was dumped for not providing his/her students basic education? Oh wait – you’re not even supposed to test teachers regularly to see if they need more training or updating because the Union’s against it. I’ve personally been involved with having bad teachers fired when we caught them advising parents that their children were ADD and needed medication from a doctor. We found one teacher with a drawer full of Ritalin that was labeled for over 2/3 of her class and promptly had her fired.

        That said, do I believe most teachers should be much better paid? Absolutely! But do I also believe that our children deserve the best education taught by the best teachers? Positively! Period.

        What makes you any more qualified than any of us in general or the Gates’ in particular? You’ve also made millions and given it away to improve the things you believe need improving? Or you spend all your time telling everyone how smart you are and how no one else can fix a broken system without offering any tangible solutions that people will actually embrace and adopt?

        Yep – Condescending comments really go a long way in making your case. DUH.

        • David Blomstrom

          “When was the last time a truly bad teacher was dumped for not providing his/her students basic education?”

          When was the last time a principal who embezzled money from the student fund or recruited students for sex was fired? When was the last time a derelict superintendent or school board official was fired?

          Times up.

          By the way, did you know that, under the late derelict general John Stanford, Seattle principals were called CEOs? Did you know that superintendent salaries are skyrocketing, similar to CEOs?

          “What makes you any more qualified than any of us in general or the Gates’ in particular?”

          I’ve actually taught school – DUH. I also have a brain. If I was going to give millions of dollars to a school district, I’d make an effort to fix the corruption that costs us billions of dollars a year.

          Funny thing is, with all of Bill Gates genius, he never seems to get a clue about politics. Same with war… Gates is promoted as the reincarnation of Jesus Christ. He says he wants to heal the sick, feed the hungry and educate children, yet Mr. Compassion never has a word to say about America’s increasingly grotesque wars. Some genius, eh?

          “You’ve also made millions and given it away to improve the things you believe need improving?”

          Nope.

          “Or you spend all your time telling everyone how smart you are and how no one else can fix a broken system without offering any tangible solutions that people will actually embrace and adopt?”

          Strike two.

          I hate to make more “condescending statements,” but it’s kind of hard to have a respectful conversation with someone who’s so …well, I’ll be polite and call you “dense” – kinda like concrete.

          • RobertinSeattle

            Like I said, good luck with running for office.

            I already know your favorite burger place in Seattle: DICKS!

          • David Blomstrom

            Three strikes – you’re out. Dude, you really need to work on your comprehension skills.

          • RobertinSeattle

            Sir – If THIS is how you talked to our children as a “teacher” in our system, we’re ALL happy that you no longer “teach” them. But I’m sure if you continue showing everyone who questions you just how smart you are by directly attacking anyone else with other points of view instead of actually addressing the issue at hand, then you just may eventually get yourself elected – for what I have no idea – because that is indeed what politicians do.

            And if you have ever wondered why you keep looking like you’ve won every argument you’ve started online, it may be because people tire of your boorish ways and simply walk away.

            Yes – you win. I’m sure the smartest man in Seattle – at least smarter than Bill Gates – is going to have to post one more final quip to get that last word in edgewise. I won’t bother to write you back just like everyone else who’s actually tried to engage you in a civil discussion. About hamburgers.

            You win.

          • David Blomstrom

            “Sir – If THIS is how you talked to our children as a ‘teacher’ in our system, we’re ALL happy that you no longer ‘teach’ them.”

            I taught elementary school, and I’m afraid I didn’t have much time to discuss political issues with kindergartners and third graders.

            As for boorishness and evading issues…well, you seem be monopolizing that part of the discussion. Good day.

          • Guest

            David, you’re a horrible man who has caused irreparable damage to the minds of hundreds of schoolchildren by trying to educate them. I know you always have to have the last word, so here it is:

            Write a $1,000 check and mail it to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Write “BIL GATS IS A DOODOOHEAD” in the memo section. Once it clears — you may need to empty your TIAA-CREF account to ensure it does so — I’ll read your reply and reply again.

            You want the men of Geek to continue supporting your pitiful cries for attention? Pay up or watch as your audience shuts up.

            One thousand clams, David. Pay up or I’ll stop paying attention to you!

    • margaret Bartley

      I have always wondered if these high-powered CEO-types were really as naive as they appeared to be. From what I’ve seen of how busy they are, a case migth be made they only thing they know about some of the institutions they are not directly involved with come from the mainline, tenured academic world and the corporate media, both of which are firmly committed to keeping the public confused and uninformed.

      But it’s really hard for me to believe that billg or anyone else who is so connected would be unaware of the faults you point out – that political correctness and careerism have everything to do with policy, and the interests of the students have a pretty low priority.

      He went to Harvard, and I don’t have experience with Ivy League schools, but as someone who attended both the University of Washington, and the University of California, it was pretty obvious to me that the best interests the students was almost irrelevant, and I don’t see how 7410people who went through the public school system could not know that.

      Do you really think that Bill Gates was ever as naive as you are suggesting in this article?

  • old_frt

    Dicks turns out a fair enough burger, but their fries are cooked in beef fat which cannot be faulted in flavor.

    Burgermaster is more than adequate in both the burger and fries categories, but they are one of the few, if not the only, drive-ins with real carhops.

    Classic!

    • Old, not-a-frt

      Dick’s fries a NOT cooked in beef fat. As mandated my King Co. ordinance it’s a non-transfat oil. I think their’s is sunflower.

  • Dan Evans Jr

    Rather amazing how quickly an unremarkable article about Bill’s favorite burgers turns into an uncivil discourse. Bill grew up 5 minutes from a Burgermaster and his fondness for Burgermaster developed long before MSFT was even a vision much less a company.

  • yoyo

    I knew it…. Bill gates likes to eat dicks XD

  • Isaiah

    I saw Bill Gates waiting in line at the Wallingford Dicks

  • AaronBregel

    I recall seeing Bill at the McDonald’s north of U Village a few times back in the early 90’s and he was living in nearby Laurelhurst.

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