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Sep 15, 2007 01:57 PM

How is Taylor's Refresher, REALLY?

Yes, I saw it on Food TV.

I have not had a burger in4 years. I live in LA. Is Taylor' in St Helene worth waiting for for my "once in a blue moon" burger?

I was thinking about going there (the one in St Helena, not the Ferry building) on a trip to the Napa area.

I liked the look of the onion rings, Tuna Burger and mushroom burger (and the shakes!)

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  1. I haven't been to the one in St Helena, but at FB the thing to get is the sweet potato fries!

    1 Reply
    1. re: susancinsf

      I agree - the sweet potato fries for sure. We stopped in July on the way back from Lake County - DH had the ahi burger and I had one of the other more conventional burgers - I think maybe with carmelized onions and blue cheese but I can't remember for sure. Both were very good and the sweet potato fries were delish but I'm not sure that it was really worth the $40 or so that it cost (we had beers with our lunch).

      High point of visit was while we were standing in line and the fellow in front of us thought that DH was Steven Spielberg (he does kind of look like him when he wears a baseball cap...) He actually went so far as to have his girlfriend take their picture - he said he was going to show it to friends - on how he met a celebrity standing in line for lunch in St. Helena! What a hoot!

    2. I liked the fact that the ahi burger was on a squishy bun (I've tried a version with a hard bun and it is impossible), and I liked the wasabi, but I've decided that eating so much nearly-raw tuna at once makes me a bit queasy. My SO liked the regular burger. The place is fun. Why not try it?

      1. Forget Taylor's Refresher, at least in San Francisco. The burgers are consistantly dry and unimpressive. The sweet potato fries are good but not spectacular. I have never tried the St. Helena original.

        If you live in LA go to Father's Office in Santa Monica on Montana and get the burger, cooked medium rare, with sweet potato fries and the blue cheese dipping sauce. That burger is spectacular and worthy of a once every four years burger experience. If you need a good burger in the San Francisco area there are better choices like Barclays' in Oakland. The Barclay's burger is fantastic but the fries are unremarkable.

        Barclays Restaurant and Pub
        5940 College Ave
        Oakland, CA 94618
        (510) 654-1650

        1. I recently had Taylor's and while it is a very good hamburger, I don't think it qualifies for "worth waiting for my once in a blue moon burger". While the sweet potato fries could have been more crispy, they were tasty. Subsequently, I had burger at The Counter in Palo Alto but thought that Taylor's was better.

          BTW, when I had researched the L.A. board for my Summer vacation, one highly recommended item appeared to be Mashti Malone's ginger rosewater ice cream but unfortunately didn't have time to seek it out. Imagine my delight when I discovered it at a local Persian grocery store (wasn't looking for it). Bought it, took it home and had a spoonful even before I put the other groceries away was just okay. Although the ice cream was good (not exceptional), felt the rosewater essence was too strong. Just wanted to give you a perspective of Chowhound reviews (btw, all other LA recs were great!)

          4 Replies
          1. re: ceekskat

            Gotta agree. While Taylor's Refresher has its appeal, don't expect excellent chow, or bad - it's quite good; not the best.

            Considering it's a fast food roadside stop, very good.

            1. re: Waterboy

              I have only been to the one at the Ferry Building, split a burger w/ a friend, I thought it was pretty decent. I agree w/ ceekskat and waterboy - a decent burger, but not too special either.

              Dave MP

            2. re: ceekskat

              I've seen several Masti Malone flavors at Whole Foods and (I think) at Rainbow as well.

              1. re: ceekskat

                In general ceekskat I'd agree with you, but The Gimp is right in recommending Father's Office as a superlative burger and fries. I try to eat there every time I get to LA. They also do a darn good cheese plate. ( I didn't know they serve the fries with blue cheese sauce, I've only had them with the aioli)

              2. The original -- St. Helena -- is, IMHO, much better than the one in the city. Then again, it's not really the original either -- considering they changed hands. Be prepared for a long line . . . it's very, very good. Great? Well . . . .