Hooters

Friday, October 3, 2014
The_Burger_Adventure-Hooters
Hooters – 6922 Hollywood Blvd, Suite 109, Hollywood, California, USA
Burger:
Hooters Cheeseburger
Serviettes:
3
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
10 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
$12.08 USD
Summary

On April Fools Day 1983, six men sat in Clearwater, Florida, talking about a business prospect. They chose this day as a joke because they figured their idea was destined for failure. Decades on and many tight shorts later, Hooters is a booming enterprise. Half sports bar, half breastaurant, Hooters is still an all-American family friendly venue that has “good times on tap”. Making a name for themselves for their super smiley Hooters girls and spicy chicken wings has lead Hooters to open 430 locations all over the world all the way from Tokyo to Prague. At 11.30am along the Hollywood Walk of Fame, I looked forward to escaping the California sun and diving into a cold beer and juicy hamburger. Just like their waitresses, the burgers come in different shapes and sizes, but I opted for the classic Hooters Cheeseburger. In between a soft traditional burger bun was a medium cooked beef pattie, American cheese, onions, lettuce, tomato and ketchup and mustard left on the side to add as I pleased. I couldn’t decide between the Curly Fries or Tater Tots, so I just got both.

Comments
“Forget about the plunging neck lines and ass-cheek-revealing shorts. The experience at Hooters is delightful. If you’re in a terrible mood their staff will be sure to cheer you up in a jiffy. The Hooters girls’ positivity and bubbliness rubs off, and surprisingly not in a sleazy way. Floor staff aside, the food is the real reason for my visit. The Cheeseburger was pure Americana with its dripping cheese and super soft bite, but it wasn’t anything amazing. The patty was OK on its own, but when combined with the raw onions it made for a meaty, salty treat. I like that the burger didn’t come with sauce because these guys appreciate everyone likes something different squirted on their buns. They know that they’re not gourmet so they don’t try to be. I was recommended to try my burger cooked medium but should’ve gone medium-rare to get a bit more juice. Overall, a really lovely experience. Beers as big as your head, burgers and super friendly staff. What more could you want?”


Houston’s

Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Houston’s – 10250 Santa Monica Blvd, Century City, California, USA
Burger:
Cheeseburger
Serviettes:
2
Dress Code:
Smart Casual
Sleepiness:
13 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
$15 USD
Summary

Houston’s originally opened it’s Los Angeles doors in 1977; their name paying homage to founder, owner and current CEO George Biel’s home state of Texas. But by the time you read this, they may have already converted. In the recent years Houston’s has been taken over by the Hillstone Restaurant Group where it sits alongside about 45 other restaurants and 11 different brands. Slowly but surely the Hillstone name is taking over, but according to them, for the better. For as long as some local Californians can remember Houston’s has been delivering some of the best burgers going around. Hillstone is doing its bit to try and keep it that way, really driving home that they’re still a family owned business, seemingly worried about causing cracks in their foundations.
The decor is classy but without being pretentious. You’ll notice dimmed lighting and dark woods whilst traditional American booths line the back wall of the restaurant; perfect for dates, business dinners or just a casual burger review. I grabbed myself the Cheeseburger that came with fresh-ground chuck, cheddar, tomato, lettuce and onion on a house-made bun. On the side you’ll get an enormous portion of thinly cut fries with a choice of three dipping sauces: mayo, mustard or ketchup.

Comments
“I’d been mooching off a friend living up in the Hollywood hills all week, and when it came to burger talk, she insisted Houston’s was one of the best. All I had been told so far was that it was a pretty old school steakhouse sort-of-joint, but I immediatley had fears that it wouldnt live up to the hype since earlier in the week I’d had the pleasure of dining at one of LA’s finest and notorious steakhouses, Mastro’s. (Amazing steaks and creamed corn to die for – do it if you have the chance).
We sat down in our booth and I already felt kind of horrible – not because of the restaurant or the usual hangover – but because my two lovely dining partners had just begun some ridiculous cleansing detox diet that day… Suckers! When my cheeseburger (and their salads and rice) came out I wasn’t overly impressed. It looked like any other hamburger going around. Once I had put in all the appropriate ingredients it took a step straight up. The first bite was so juicy, so saucy and really one of the best cooked patties I’d eaten in a while, with just the right shade of pink throughout. The cheddar was good and so was the bun, but like any good burger should, the pattie really stole the show making me regret adding in all that extra lettuce and tomato. There really wasn’t anything crazy unique about this, some may even call it boring, but it was just a Traditional American burger done right.”
Houston's on Urbanspoon


Grub

Friday, January 21, 2011
Grub – 911 Seward St, Hollywood, California, USA
Burger:
White Truffle Burger
Serviettes:
4
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
14 minutes
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
$13.50 USD
Summary

In the backstreets of Hollywood, amidst a forest of Post-Production studios lies Grub. You probably wouldn’t guess it were a restaurant if it weren’t for the sign and people coming and going. Co-Owners Betty Fraser and Denise DeCarlo (who met whilst waitressing at a pizzeria), deliver their cheeky take on “California Comfort Food” in a converted 1920’s duplex that from first glance, just looks like someone’s house or a quaint Bed & Breakfast. This is all intentional; Fraser and DeCarlo wanted a place that people could come to unwind, relax or soak up some of that lovely California sunshine in their courtyard after a busy day. With a meal in there for everyone, from breakfast, dinner and dessert, their tantalising menu will probably leave you undecided for a little while. Lucky for me I had been recommended the White Truffle burger by a LA local. It came on a Cheddar Kaiser with roasted Mushrooms, melted Swiss Cheese, caramelised Onions, fresh Arugula & Roasted-Garlic Mayo. Then of course it was all drizzled with the not-so-secret ingredient, White Truffle Oil.

Comments
“I was coming to the end of my trip. Los Angeles had been fun but it had also beaten the shit out of me. Long days and late nights were becoming the norm and the burger recommendations were flying at me left, right and centre. It was Emmy time and parties were in full swing. At one particular gala, after being introduced as “the Australian burger guy” for the 100th time, I finally had a recommendation that I knew I just had to try.
One morning (ok it was noon) I got up and decided to make the trek to LA’s trendy Post-Production district. For some reason walking seemed like a bright idea but after a decent hour, and a bit of a hunt, I found it. Strolling down Seward Street you’d be forgiven for missing it or just thinking its some random haunt. From your first step in to your last step out you’ve got amazing service – I’ve never been to a chirpier café/restaurant. As well as the White Truffle Burger I grabbed a homemade ginger ale and boy was a happy when it came out. Ten seconds later and the drink was gone. I knew I was thirsty from the walk (and from the night before) but this was ridiculous. All of a sudden the waiter brought out a few sliced carrots, cucumbers and pretzels with a herb-mayo for dipping sauce as a complimentary entrée – a really nice touch. My next drink of choice was going to be the blueberry lemonade. It was unbelievable. Burger or no burger, I’d be back at Grub in a second just for that.
Soon enough they brought out the burger. It came laid out like a conquered beast; with a steak knife straight through its heart making it ooze swiss cheese all over the place. I sat there in awe for a little while wondering how I was meant to tackle this monstrosity. After taking a few snaps of the Swiss Cheese Niagara Falls, I cut this bad boy in half and went to town. My first impression wasn’t great; the bun was way too hard and crunchy and I started questioning the use of this Cheddar Kaiser. All it did was take away from the other ingredients. The Swiss cheese coupled with the White Truffle oil was a big winner though, coating my mouth like the creamiest of melted butters.
Just when I thought it was getting better with each bite, I started pulling out the overload of lettuce, caramelised onions and mushrooms as they were killing my Truffle experience! On their own they were ok but they together they were like uninvited guests at a party. Even more disappointing was the beef – it was overseasoned and overcooked, which was a real shame. I didn’t bother eating my side of potato chips because I was just too full. I sipped on my amazing blueberry lemonade and thought about how much potential this burger had to be great. They really do have the right recipe here for an amazing burger (minus the stupid bun) but the ratios of ingredients and cooking times that day were just off the mark.”


In-N-Out Burger

Thursday, October 7, 2010
In-N-Out Burger – 7009 Sunset Blvd, Hollywood, California, USA
Burger:
Cheeseburger Animal Style
Serviettes:
3
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
6 minutes
Would we recommend:
Definitely
Price:
$3.15 USD + $2.70 USD for french fries and a beverage
Summary

Starting out in 1948 as a humble drive-thru burger box, it has developed into an icon for burgers and fast food all over USA’s west coast. At In-N-Out Hollywood on a crazy-busy summer’s day, I experienced another possible meaning behind their name: you order, look around desperately for somewhere to sit, claim it and wait for your number to be called. Then after I ate my burger, I felt so bad with people staring at my place, I took some notes and made for the door. The layout is not dissimilar to your McTypical fast food joint: basic, nonintrusive decor and seating, all very fitting to let you focus on the meal you are sure to devour. I ordered from the Not-So-Secret Menu where I took my Cheeseburger and turned it Animal Style. This consisted of a baked plain burger bun, a mustard cooked beef pattie, American cheese, hand-leafed lettuce, tomato, pickles, ketchup and grilled onions.

Comments
“Screw the cab driver who on the way to drop me off kept on ragging on In-N-Out and why I shouldn’t eat meat! Although, the man had a parrot, so who was I to argue at that point in time. Once inside, amidst the calamity of people getting their orders and the tourists not knowing what to get, I managed to weasel a counter seat, claimed it and waited for my number to be called. Bingo! I unwrapped my special package and was immediately blown away with all of the American cheese oozing out. After taking a few snaps I sunk my teeth in. At first it was soft, then you hit the meat and onions and got a wicked crunch. The mustard cooked pattie + grilled onions were filled with a salty awesomeness thats hard to compare to another fast-food chain. However, the pickles were average and could’ve done with some more juiciness. This burger is probably not the highest quality or best thing for you but damn its tasty. Being a stinking hot LA day the air-con was on full blast and ended up making my chips go cold. I ate them all the same but they weren’t memorable. If I wasn’t in a rush I would’ve gladly had another one. Frankly I’d advise most people to go the double or triple if you want to avoid multiple orders. If these guys brought their business Down Under I’d be one of the first people in line. It was like crack damn-it. Thats right I said crack!”


Ruby’s Diner LAX

Monday, August 23, 2010
Ruby’s Diner LAX – 201 World Way, Terminal 6, Los Angeles,
California, USA
Burger:
The Ruby Burger
Serviettes:
1
Dress Code:
Casual
Sleepiness:
Too difficult to determine after a 15 hour flight
Would we recommend:
If you’re in the area
Price:
$8.49 USD
Summary

Setup for the hungry traveller, this “Welcome to the USA” experience will have you sitting amidst 50’s style booths with patrons from all around the world. The Ruby Burger comes on a basic sesame seed bun with a 1/3 pound USDA Ground Beef, sliced tomato, lettuce and “RubySauce” (which I swear is just mayonnaise), and a sweet/salty pickle. Your fries are also “refillable”! Not a bad option if you’re stuck in transit.

Comments
“This was so very soft and easy to eat. I’d say accompanied by the “refillable” fries, you can either sit there all day, or slam-home the burger just in time to hear your final boarding call. The ground beef was nothing flash. It wasn’t very juicy and all I really got was that grilled charcoal flavour mixed with a touch of blandness. Nevertheless, after that much travel it was still passable. I understand Ruby’s offer Ultimate Kobe Burgers at their bigger restaurants, so maybe that’s the way to go if you’re looking for something a touch gourmet. The fries delivered a satisfying crunch but along with the “greens”, were just average. The pickle held its own (the way most pickles do), providing a bolt of sweet/salty goodness. All in all, it was certainly more interesting than settling for McDonald’s, and if you can score a booth by the window you wont regret it.”


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