Archive for the ‘Bacon’ Category

Perception never falls into the simple categorization of black versus white. Perception falls anywhere within a boundless spectrum of antipodes. The problem lies with people’s ability to conceive perceptions beyond their scope. You can ask a person what type of music they love the most, while the next person may loathe that type of music. Most people claim to not like country music, yet the truth reveals that they simply have no preference for it; however, few people actually get adamant about the music. Going beyond preferences commonly exists in food and beverages. Where one person may call something “the best,” another will claim something else as better. For example, my father swears by the $2 wine from Trader Joe’s, unable to accept that pricier fine wines taste better. Some people say that no other burger can top a common burger from corporate fast food or corporate restaurants. People truly get attached to their fast food burgers and refuse to believe that better burgers exist out there. Whether or not you claim to know about the best burger in the world, I encourage you to seek out these five burgers in the greater Los Angeles area this season and give them a try. Who knows – maybe you will alter your opinions after one bite!

5. Eat Chow‘s Chow BBQ Burger

Portion size means a lot to the typical person who goes out to eat. Fine-dining restaurants focus on quality over quantity, so while fine-dining entrées appear small, it makes up for it with outstanding flavor. Generally, people want that happy medium between fine-dining and fast food, a restaurant that serves high-quality yet affordable food, something that Eat Chow specializes in. Now with three locations in Orange County, Eat Chow does not boast too much, perhaps because their foods speaks for itself. Eat Chow takes common foods and makes them well, from their burgers to the sandwiches to the entrées and more. Clearly a lot of care has gone into the dishes, evident by how much of the food’s natural flavor one can taste. In addition to the heightened food quality, Eat Chow doles up generous portion sizes too, such as in their Chow BBQ Burger. This grass-fed chuck patty comes topped with housemade barbecue sauce, smoked gouda cheese, crispy onion strings, bacon, mayonnaise, shredded lettuce, and tomatoes on a brioche bun. You can take on this huge burger for just $13.

4. Ocean Diner‘s Kiss Me Kate Burger

Different ingredients yield different flavors to the palate. Some ingredients have mild flavors, while some ingredients have extreme flavors. Some of the extreme-flavored ingredients may come with inauspicious side effects, such as spicy foods attacking the taste buds or foods invoking halitosis, or bad breath. Some of the latter ingredients taste so good that people often endure the side effects, such as garlic. For a calamity of ingredients that can cause bad breath, Ocean Diner has found just the combination. From the outside, Ocean Diner looks like your typical small-town American diner. However, Ocean Diner truly has some amazing things going on in here, such as their Kiss Me Kate Burger. This specialty burger comes with bacon-roasted garlic puree, grilled onions, and goat cheese. This $11.95 comes served with French fries, mashed potatoes, brown rice, coleslaw, or cottage cheese. As a special menu item, it will not last forever, so head over to Ocean Diner fast before this burger leaves their menu!

3. green2Go‘s Grass-Fed Bison Burger

A simple human truth states that people desire control in their lives. When someone lacks control over a situation, they may start to feel stress or panic. Give someone control, and they feel a lot more comfortable over their situation. This applies to all walks of life, including food, and green2Go gives you that control over your food. green2Go uses only the freshest all-natural ingredients to ensure pure flavor and nutrition. While you may certainly order any of their items as the menu describes, green2Go proudly offers a Build-Your-Own section where you get to dress up your favorite menu items, such as their Grass-Fed Bison Burger. This bison patty comes on your choice of brioche or squaw bread, or a lettuce-wrap, organic lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and a dill pickle. From there, you can select up to four add-ons to accompany your plate, which you can pick by walking up to the BYO bar to the left of the front counter. For $16, this burger comes to you with your choice of a side salad or roasted mini potatoes.

2. Abricott‘s Lemongrass Chicken Burger

Who says that a burger must contain a ground beef patty? Not all burgers must contain beef.  We have seen multiple different types of burgers, such as turkey burgers, salmon burgers, and even vegetarian patty burgers. We rarely ever see a chicken burger, much less a chicken burger done right. Abricott would like to turn that perception around. Known for their French-Asian cuisine, Abricott remains a staple in local Pasadena food, and has attracted the attention of locals and travelers alike. Pasadena brings in huge amounts of travelers between the convention center and the Rose Bowl, and travelers often want to savor the local flavor. Abricott’s menu covers multiple forms of food, including their Lemongrass Chicken Burger. Not just any old burger, this burger contains a ground chicken patty seasoned with lemongrass, topped with tomato, onions, lettuce, and mayonnaise served on a bun with coconut tamarind sauce. At $10.95, you can taste this unique burger that few other places can match in flavor.

1. Gus’s Barbecue‘s Brisket Burnt End Burger

When one orders a burger, one can typically expect a ground beef patty supported by various toppings, correct? The beef patty usually stars as the protagonist in the story known as the burger, but once in a while a burger may feature more than one co-protagonist. For a story featuring more than one star, we turn to Gus’s Barbecue in South Pasadena. A local barbecue legend, Gus’s Barbecue has done barbecue right for such a long time that they know exactly how to apply their prized meats to other forms of food. For example, take their Brisket Burnt End Burger. This beef burger comes topped with beef brisket burnt ends, cheese sauce, pickled jalapeños, and mustard on a toasted pretzel bun. All burgers come with your choice of French fries, sweet potato fries, potato salad, cole slaw, or BBQ baked beans. You can pound this mound of meat at Gus’s Barbecue for $13.95.

For all of our lives, we have always heard about the importance of breakfast as the most important meal of the day. Whenever told about this, have we received an explanation about the origin of that? The statement exists as more than just a phrase – breakfast truly does monitor and control your mind and body for the rest of the day. What humans consume within an hour of waking up ultimately determines how a person will feel the rest of the day. A person that eats a breakfast full of vitamins and protein will take on the day with superior energy than someone who has something less nutritious for breakfast, such as pancakes with just butter and syrup. While a breakfast such as that will provide a heavy dosage of carbohydrates necessary for burning energy, a human body requires protein and vitamins in order to strengthen and grow the body. For this reason, nutritionists recommend eggs for breakfast, as eggs provide an abundant amount of protein in a small package. Many restaurants that serve breakfast will serve eggs in some fashion. For those that crave breakfast done right, seek out a local spot that specializes in quality ingredients, such as Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern.

If you seek classic American cuisine with an artisanal touch, look no further than Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern (JFAT). Reinventing traditional restaurant faire, JFAT covers many grounds of cuisine familiar to many with their high-quality approach to cooking. Currently boasting five locations between Los Angeles County, Orange County, and San Diego County, JFAT takes what you know about traditional American restaurants and turns it up to eleven. Their beverage offering alone always stays current with the seasons, as they routinely rotate out their craft beer offerings as well as their fine wines. People also love the cocktails at JFAT, as the drinks here range from sweet to spicy, mild to bold, and more. Between lunch, dinner, and a full bar, any time of the day makes for a great time to stop on by JFAT and enjoy a bite or sip or more, especially in the morning.

JFAT offers some exclusive items found only their brunch menu, which they only serve on Sunday mornings. Get there at the right time, and you can kick off your Sunday brunch right. Arrive before noon for Early Bird Happy Hour, and you can get mimosa, champagne, or their Famous Mary for just $7 each. But even if you cannot make it to Early Bird Happy Hour, JFAT’s brunch menu awaits you with lots of succulent choices, such as the popular Buttermilk Fried Chicken & Malted Ale Waffles. Enjoy JFAT’s signature buttermilk fried chicken with waffles made with real malted ale, thyme gravy, applewood smoked bacon, and maple syrup for $18. Perhaps you seek something with eggs for brunch? If so, JFAT offers two varieties of eggs benedict. One can go with the Classic Eggs Benedict – English muffins topped with black forest ham, poached eggs, and Hollandaise sauce. For a more unique spin, go with the BBQ Pulled Pork Benedict – English muffins topped with Anaheim chiles, barbecue pulled pork, poached eggs, and Tabasco Hollandaise sauce. Both of these come with tater tots and cost $17 per plate. For breakfast or brunch, some people like to eat with their hands. In that case, the Breakfast Flatbread makes for a great dish that multiple people can share. Normally cut into six pieces, this $16 flatbread comes with applewood smoked bacon, sausage, fried eggs, Fontina cheese, tater tots, and chives.

While the menu and food at Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern looks and sounds familiar, one cannot judge a book by its cover. You cannot appreciate the flavor until you try it for yourself. Head on over to Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern at Point Loma (San Diego), Dana Point, Brea, Woodland Hills, or Santa Monica to savor American cuisine at its finest. Pay attention to their Facebook and Twitter pages for details about their current food specials, as well as new food and drinks that may arrive in the future.

In today’s generation, those growing up aim to set their own trends instead of following in their parents’ footsteps. For the most part, parents raised their children with what they (the parents) learned growing up, passing on their behaviors and lifestyles on to their children. However, as the children grow up, they start to desire independence from their parents, and as such they will want to develop their own wants and desires, usually opposite from their parents. For example, while parents will likely want to eat something familiar such as pizza and burgers, the children may want something special, usually something different or fusion. Today, fusion food exists in many restaurants, which combines two different foods into one concept imagined by the chef. Instead of trying to divide parents from children, why not make a place friendly to both, such as Pizza Port?

Bearing no relation to the pizza place in Disneyland with the same name, Pizza Port resembles a true Southern California staple. Not only do they craft their own family-friendly food, but they also brew their own huge lineup of craft beers. This makes Pizza Port a great place for the entire family – the children can enjoy the fun food as well as the games inside the restaurant, and the parents can enjoy the fantastic food as well as a cold one or two. While Pizza Port revels in the awards they win for the beers they brew, their food ought to win awards as well. When you see their BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger Pizza, you will understand why both parents and children love this dish. This pizza pie comes with tangy barbecue sauce, beef meatballs, diced bacon, chopped red onions, and mozzarella & cheddar cheese with red onions. All of their pizzas can come on traditional pizza dough or their beer-infused whole grain dough.

You can enjoy this savory pizza pie at any of Pizza Port’s locations for $9.50 for a small, $18.25 for a medium, or $22 for a large. Check out what else Pizza Port has serving up by liking them on Facebook and following them on Twitter.

Americans have a strange fascination with bacon. Something about this small strip of pork drives people to spend obscene amounts of money to add it on to something. Fast food restaurants routinely charge a dollar more to add a piece of bacon, while some restaurants charge up to $4 more to add some bacon. I will never understand why people do this, but I do know that if I crave the flavor of bacon, it had better taste good. Sure bacon may not always represent the healthiest option on any menu, but it certainly beats other questionable ingredients such as white bread. At least with bacon, you do get a minor source of protein, while something like white bread will generally come with fillers and maybe preservatives depending on where you got that bread. But if you want something with a lot of bacon in it, you most likely will not care about the nutrition in it – you care about the taste and how much guilt you can cram into one item of food, and for that I go to Pig Pen Delicacy in Santa Ana.

As the name of this food stand suggests, Pig Pen Delicacy sells pork and pork accessories products in whatever manner they can fashion. Located inside the 4th Street Market, one of Orange County’s well-known food halls, Pig Pen Delicacy wants to deliver pork to you until you just shut up and love it. From pulled pork to pork belly to bacon and more, if you want pork, you got it here at Pig Pen Delicacy. While they have a regular menu with all the porky goodness around, they also have a limited-time specials menu that contains obscene items such as the Cheesy Mac Bun Burger. This burger comes on fried mac & cheese “buns” instead of regular bread, and holds the beef patty (cooked to order), cheddar cheese, candied bacon, and barbecue sauce. I hope your arteries can handle all this greasy goodness, because the faint-of-heart will most definitely not handle this thickness.

For $9.50, you can indulge in this guilty pleasure for a limited time at Pig Pen Delicacy in Downtown Santa Ana. To see what other specials they have cooking up, check out Pig Pen Delicacy on Facebook and Twitter.

2017 has arrived, and we welcome this new year with the reinvention and reintroduction of traditional world events. While the world will welcome the Summer Olympics and the United States will welcome a new president, 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. The Black Plate‘s Kobe Beef Bacon Jam Sliders

It appears that The Black Plate cannot make up its mind. It feels like every month, they operate as something else. Something here changes every month, such as the owner or the name of the restaurant. Perhaps its terrible location right off the freeway in Westminster lends to the inconsistency here. Thankfully, through it all, their food has remained consistently memorable. The Black Plate may carry a variety of foods, from sausages to hot dogs to sliders to phô to seafood to classic entrées and more. However, I always come back to the Kobe Beef Bacon Jam Sliders. The Black Plate does not serve full burgers. Instead, they have these premium Kobe beef sliders served with spicy maple jalapeño bacon jam and melted sharp cheddar on brioche slider buns. You get three to a plate for $11. You ought to hurry over to The Black Plate to try these, or they might go through some other transformation into another restaurant.

4. Ohana Burger‘s The Daniel-San

Asian food has remained under the spotlight for quite a long time, and still remains a favorite food choice for many people. Even better, people go crazy for the food when it contains an element of fusion in it. So when people discover an Asian fusion restaurant, naturally they all flock to it, such as Ohana Burger in West LA. Located in Little Osaka replacing the previous Bachi Burger, Ohana Burger brings Japanese and island flavors to the west by introducing them to a form that Americans easily recognize: burgers. Visitors can savor this fusion best in The Daniel-San. Ohana Burger takes a marinated Angus beef patty and tops it with chili mayonnaise, a fried egg, furikake, caramelized bacon, and crispy onion rings – basically, an Asian version of the western bacon cheeseburger. Anyone who loves Asian food will fall in love with this burger, as it basically represents Asian-style BBQ in a burger. Sadly, burgers do not come with any side, but once you sink your teeth into this $13 burger, you will not require a side, as you will want to prolong this experience as long as you can.

3. Little Bear‘s Liege Waffle Burger

Breakfast: the most important meal of the day. Traditionally, breakfast restricted our first daily meals to a select few types of foods, such as eggs, meat (bacon/ham/sausage), and some bread (muffin/toast/pancakes/waffles/etc). While we used to eat these with a knife and fork, why not combine it all in one plate? The folks over at Little Bear in Downtown LA have done that already. While one can easily spot Little Bear out in the open, not too many people drive down this street, so they often miss this fun little Belgian pub. As a Belgian pub, you can expect lots of Belgian beers and Belgian foods, including Belgian Waffles, which you can eat with the Liege Waffle Burger. Served only during brunch hours, Little Bear takes a fresh-ground Angus beef patty and tops it with sharp cheddar, bacon, and a fried egg. But to give it that Little Bear twist, instead of regular buns, Little Bear uses Liege Waffles as the buns, which they serve with a side of maple syrup. With the maple syrup, I suggest using a knife and fork. However, for the true burger experience, just pick it up and dive right in. You can start off your day the Little Bear way for $16.

2. VaKA Burger Express‘ El Porky

In a condensed city such as Los Angeles, hidden gems and hole-in-the-wall places exist in every nook & cranny. If you discover or someone tells you about VaKA Burger Express and you decide to go look for them, you may require more than one try to actually locate them. If you simply drive to the address, you may completely pass by them, as they have virtually no signage visible from the street. You have to actually enter Boyle Heights’ Ramirez Liquor and make your way to the back left corner to find the counter for VaKA Burger Express. Once there, you will discover a mini burger paradise with some of the best hidden burgers this side of Los Angeles, such as their El Porky. Blitz your taste buds with this burger that features provolone cheese, crispy pork belly, six-hour braised onions: French-onion soup-style, and housemade smoked barbecue sauce. Do note that they store their barbecue sauce cold, so the first few bites may feel like a blend of hot and cold. For $14 for this burger, you will never taste another burger like this again.

1. Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern‘s Jimmy Burger

If you seek classic American cuisine with an artisanal touch, look no further than Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern (JFAT). Reinventing traditional restaurant faire, JFAT covers many grounds of cuisine familiar to many with their high-quality approach to cooking. Currently boasting four locations between Los Angeles County, Orange County, and San Diego County, and with a fifth location opening soon, JFAT takes what you know about traditional American restaurants and turns it up to eleven. Between brunch, lunch, dinner, and a full bar, any time of the day makes for a great time to stop on by JFAT and enjoy a bite or sip or more. Their beverage offering alone always stays current with the seasons, as they routinely rotate out their craft beer offerings as well as their fine wines. People also love the cocktails at JFAT, as the drinks here range from sweet to spicy, mild to bold, and more. On the food side, JFAT pays close attention to not only the quality, but the portions of their dishes. For a traditional pub entrée, go with a burger, such as their Jimmy Burger. This $18 burger comes with applewood-smoked bacon, spicy jalapeño jam, and southern pimento cheese. Although more sweet and hearty than spicy, a little bit of heat kicks in at the end, giving a full spectrum of flavor in each bite. While the menu and food at Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern looks and sounds familiar, one cannot judge a book by its cover. You cannot appreciate the flavor until you try it for yourself. Head on over to Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern at Point Loma (San Diego), Dana Point, Brea, Woodland Hills, or Santa Monica to savor American cuisine at its finest.

This past Saturday, Burger Boss officially opened the doors to their fourth (unconfirmed?) location in Cypress right next to Cypress High School. This location used to hold an old strip mall with small shops, which included the former Furnace Skate Shop location. This center has since then undergone reconstruction into new shops, possibly gentrifying the area to better attract locals to the area, especially teenagers of the nearby Cypress High School. Residing alongside popular businesses such as 85°C Bakery and Pieology, Burger Boss has come to deliver good food and good-for-you food with their local and sustainable ingredients. Burger Boss allows customers to build their own burger from the base up by selecting all of the ingredients that go into their sandwich. Starting with the bun and protein, customers then choose the cheese(s), sauce(s), and toppings. This concept also applies to the fries at Burger Boss, where customers can select the sauce(s) and toppings that go with the fries. As far as the full menu goes, it ends there for Burger Boss, as they do not offer much else aside from fountain drinks. While a lot of other burger joints provide milkshakes, Burger Boss foregoes that to opt for a healthier approach to dining, since milkshakes go against healthy dining. The presentation of the food in those steel baskets greatly resembles other well-known burger joints, such as Smashburger and The Habit Burger Grill.

Burger Boss has other locations in Riverside/Moreno Valley, Lake Forest, and Mission Viejo, with more locations planned for Tustin and Newport Beach (which may have already opened by the time you read this post). All locations boast the same menu, so stop on in and experience the all-natural flavor that food should taste like. Check out what Burger Boss has going on, including updates for their upcoming locations, by liking them on Facebook and following them on Twitter.

Some time after the frozen yogurt fad took off around 2004-2005, the cupcake trend emerged thanks to the opening of Sprinkles Cupcakes in Beverly Hills. After their success, hundreds of pastry chefs across the nation followed that trend and soon opened up their own cupcakery. Many have tried, yet many have failed due to bad cupcakes. However, some cupcake stores have proven that they deserve to remain in the business. Some television shows have helped to keep cupcakes in the spotlight, such as Cupcake Wars. With cupcake stores all over the place, it takes some time and dedication to discover which ones truly stand out for the quality of their cupcakes. Throughout my travels, my sweet tooth has led me to a bunch of different dessert places, some classic and some inventive. While I always appreciate new and unique desserts, sometimes it helps to go back to the classics, which has led me to My Delight Cupcakery in Ontario.

For over seven years now, My Delight Cupcakery has doled out some of the best cupcakes this side of the Mississippi. During their early years, I recall that they only had their mobile food truck to serve their scrumptious cupcakes out of. Since I discovered My Delight, they have since opened as storefront in a corner of Ontario close to Upland and Montclair. My Delight utilizes organic and all-natural ingredients to give their cupcakes the texture, moisture, and sweetness that makes a cupcake worth it. Prominently, their frosting does not taste overwhelmingly of butter, which many other cupcakeries seem to not pay any attention to. This allows their cupcakes to portray more of the true flavors of the cupcakes rather than the richness found in most other frostings elsewhere. My Delight rotates the flavors of their cupcakes monthly, so while they will always carry their standard lineup of cupcakes, My Delight will also have a great assortment of seasonal flavors.

My Delight understands the art of baking, as evident in their little packages of goodness. Make a road trip to My Delight, and you will not regret it. Check out what My Delight has baking up by liking them on Facebook and following them on Twitter.