5 Burgers in the Los Angeles Area You Must Try This Winter

Posted: January 8, 2014 in Bacon, Burgers, Food, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Restaurant, Top 5
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2014 has arrived, and we welcome this new year with the reinvention and reintroduction of traditional world events. While the world will welcome the Winter Olympics and World Cup, the notion of bringing back something familiar spreads to other subjects as well. When something goes away for a while and returns much later, we refer to those things as classic. Some people say that the classics never go out of style, but eventually, all good things must come to an end, and classics do too. For that purpose, millennials must continually search for ways to improve or adapt methods in all aspects of life. Today’s culture revolves around two types of people: the safe, and the risk-takers. Safe people will find something they recognize and stick with it, preferring not to deviate away from the norm. Risk-takers feel adventurous and love to try new things. In general, safe people live a bland, boring life, while risk-takers live an exciting spontaneous life. Excitement gets your adrenaline pumping, so add some spontaneity to your life by seeking out these five burgers in the greater Los Angeles area this season.

5. James Republic‘s House Blend Grass-Fed Burger

Never underestimate restaurants connected to a hotel. More often than not, people picture hotel restaurants as typical American food with nothing unique about it, yet costing a lot for basic food. Sadly, any hotel restaurant gets instantly stuck with this stereotype the moment guests from out of town spot the restaurant or bar. People used to stereotype food trucks for the longest time, but the media and smart marketing promoted food trucks to a new level. Exceptions to the rule always exist, and sometimes you can discover a great hotel restaurant, such as James Republic in Downtown Long Beach. Nestled on the corner of 1st Street and Linden Avenue, the Marriott’s resident restaurant exemplifies more than just the standard hotel faire. James Republic stands by the local and sustainable movement, supporting local farmers while promising to utilize ethical ingredients in a farm-to-table manner. James Republic proudly sources their ingredient locally, and posts a board stating all of the sources of the ingredients they use in their kitchen. In their House Blend Grass-Fed Burger, James Republic uses not one, but TWO grass-fed beef patties, along with Fiscalini white cheddar, onion jam, and what they call fancy sauce on a sprouted whole-wheat bun. The menu does not mention the second patty, so expect a very meaty burger when you bite into this juicy burger with minimal toppings. You can grab this burger for brunch/lunch or dinner seven days a week for just $13. Guests can park for free on the street east of here.

4. Black Hogg‘s Buttery Lamb Burger

Historically, hamburgers started out as ground beef. Once people realized that a hamburger simply involved ground meat, bold chefs and cooks started experimenting with different meats. Over time, we discovered the use of other meats to create burgers, such as turkey, wild boar, and lamb. While turkey typically gets a bad rap, lamb burgers have endured, allowing people everywhere to enjoy it without guilt. A handful of restaurants make lamb burgers, including Black Hogg in Silverlake. This small gastropub located in a neighborhood west of Downtown Los Angeles reminds us that size does not matter, and to not judge the restaurant by the size of their dining area. Black Hogg cuts the clutter by focusing on quality over quantity. What they lack in numbers, they make up for with top-shelf ingredients and drinks. From the carefully-chosen craft beers & wines to the locally-sourced ingredients, no one should ever have to complain about the minimal decisions to make when ordering. They even serve their own rendition of a Buttery Lamb Burger, where they craft a patty of ground lamb & butter, then top it simply with habañero onions & Onetik bleu cheese, and serve it with fries. The minimal toppings allow for maximum savoring of the lamb patty, as the onions and cheese do not overpower the meat, but complement the overall burger. You can own one of these lamb burgers for $17 from Black Hogg during regular business hours. Guests can park for free in the neighborhood behind the restaurant.

3. The Escondite‘s Captain Kangaroo

Something about hole-in-the-wall places really entice risk-takers. For the most part, people call a place a hole-in-the-wall due to its shoddiness or location. Uncommonly, a hole-in-the-wall can yield some of the best things that no one would expect until people start to talk about it. Some places can exist right before our bare eyes, and we would never notice it until someone points it out, regardless of its stature. When people drive through Downtown Los Angeles, they often zoom right past The Escondite without ever giving thought to turn their eyes that way. No one would ever stumble upon The Escondite unintentionally – the restaurant blends in so well with the other buildings that people would have to voluntarily look for it to find it. Code-named The Hideout, The Escondite fulfills the speakeasy role with its dim atmosphere and classy drink selection. They run weekly specials on food and drinks, aiming to hit every palate out there. With a menu filled with names or other proper nouns, the theme fits well with this restaurant that employs a special burger for a day of the week. All of The Escondite’s burgers come with no substitutions, resulting in a truly daring bout. When looking on the regular menu, many of the items still stand out, such as their Captain Kangaroo burger. Served on their regular menu, this breakfast-themed burger comes with an over-easy egg, a hash brown patty, cheddar, Canadian bacon, gravy, and Cholula hot sauce. Breakfast foods have become quite a popular food trend lately, and that trend looks stronger than ever. Prepare for a messy battle as you attempt to lift this breakfast burger that you would likely order during dinner. Street parking meters become free after 6pm, so you ought to go at night anyways.

2. Eden Burger Bar‘s Rehab Burger

For the most part, if something tries to make you go to rehab, you would resist. Returning a person to a normal human being defines the purpose of rehab. If rehab should fix a person, then for what purpose would it accomplish the antipode? Once you visit Eden Burger Bar in Glendale, you will find out exactly what that means. Living up to its name, Eden Burger Bar does mainly burgers, and they do burgers right. This gastropub up in Glendale takes the class up a notch with the dashing interior decor coupled with a huge lineup of craft beer, along with their dazzling food menu. They occasionally bring out special burgers for a limited time, such as their Black Label Burger last season. Without these specials burgers, their menu still carries a fantastic list of mouthwatering burgers. Gazing up and down the burger menu, one cannot help but ping a red flag over the Rehab Burger. With a special blend of 35-day dry-aged beef, this breakfast-themed burger gets smothered with house spicy bacon, Swiss cheese, sweet potato & sausage hash, maple-mustard mayonnaise, and a fried egg, all within a brioche bun. Upon first sight, the burger will not appear as large as one would expect. This kind of burger requires small bites in order to savor every single ingredient used in this monstrous burger, which you can order for just $12 during business hours. Once you get through this burger, you will feel stuffed and satisfied. Rehab will not fix you in this case – it will heighten your craving for more.

1. Umami Arts District‘s Manly Burger

A former university instructor of mine once said, “Liberal arts majors cry, while business majors find ways to make money off of them.” I eventually discovered the true meaning behind this phrase: talent means nothing without the business skills to monetize it. On that note, we should take this time to say thanks to those who majored in liberal arts in college, as well as all others with profitable talent, such as music and art. The “starving artist” concept drew from the aforementioned quote, as like-minded artists tend to band together, but still cannot generate the means to grow beyond their circle of knowledge without the help of business people, such as real estate agents. Once employed, more artists band together to form a neighborhood, or an arts district that soon turns into a bustling business district. Within Downtown Los Angeles’ arts district lies the 20th Umami Burger location. I once stated that Umami Burger would conquer the world, and it appears that their global reach manifested itself last year already. That said, Umami Burger requires no introduction from me, as anything I can say about Umami Burger has slipped from other people’s lips already. However, I can tell you that you simply must try this location’s specialty burger: the Manly Burger. All other Umami Burger locations have a standard Manly Burger on their menu, but this Arts District one stands out above the rest. Instead of a beef patty, this burger comes with a patty made with a blend of beef & lardons… anyone reading this may picture Slater’s 50/50 in their minds. Furthermore, Umami Arts District tops this burger with crisp-braised pork belly, baconnaise, and beer-cheddar cheese, all within a bacon fat-basted toasted brioche bun. Funny that this Umami Burger location still calls it the Manly Burger, when they should think to call it something a little different, such as the Manlier Burger. Come grow a beard by slamming this burger for $14, available during regular business hours seven days a week. Guests can find some free street parking around the arts district, or locate the meters that become free after 4pm.

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Comments
  1. simplydelish says:

    OMG these are huge! Man vs food material for sure!

  2. leashaw10 says:

    Going to LA soon definitely gunna have to find some of these !

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