Blueberry Hill "Gourmet" Hamburgers - OB/Point Loma (San Diego)
My girlfriend and I had lunch at Blueberry Hill - Gourmet Hamburgers, which is on the corner of Catalina Blvd and Voltaire St. This is toward Point Loma, but maybe still technically in Ocean Beach. The address is 4161 Voltaire St, and the website is http://blueberryhillsandiego.com/. The review follows:
1) Good beer selection, and cheap beer - They have standard offerings (Budweiser, Heineken, Sierra Nevada, etc.) plus Stella Artois and Stone IPA (and others) on draught. During Happy Hour (4-7 every day), the draught beers are $2.50
2) Several large LCD TVs - If you're into sports, there are 3+ large TVs, featuring sports.
3) Service - The service was good. Despite the restaurant being deserted, the waitress did not hover and still provided prompt service.
4) Portions - the burgers aren't gigantic, but you get a very large side with it.
1) Menu - Not enough hamburgers. Only 2 types of burger (one 6 oz, one 8 oz), plus a few veggie or turkey options. More salads and cheesesteak offerings than hamburgers.
2) Food quality - Although the name states "gourmet hamburgers", they are anything but gourmet. The patties are pre-formed (with scalloped edges), pre-frozen, tasteless, and rubbery. They have a similar taste to hamburgers in elementary school cafeterias (overly processed). They claim to be 100% Angus beef, which I'm sure is true, but it's the kind of Angus beef patties you buy in bulk from Costco or Sysco.
The bun was a standard sesame bun which you'd find from Sysco or any grocery store.
I had the caesar salad side, which was mostly croutons. Several bites tasted soapy, but that might've been the fork or plate. The dressing was good. Croutons were bulk/bagged, and bland.
My girlfriend had the "country fries", which were merely regular fries, with no seasoning. Also, some were soggy and undercooked and others were overcooked. They were obviously frozen bulk fries, and not very good.
3) Prices - Expect to pay "gourmet" prices. The 6 oz. burger is $8, and the 8 oz. burger is $9. This includes lettuce, tomato, etc., and sauces (ketchup, etc.), but not cheese. Cheese runs you an extra $1. The burger comes with one side, either fries or salad. The side portions are large.
4) Parking - There is very little parking, and you have to compete with Domino's next door. Be careful leaving the lot behind the building, because the bottom of your car will scrape on the sharp incline. Also, the parking lot is one-way, so you have to leave through the back lot and scrape your car bottom.
5) The place is big, and always deserted. If you like atmosphere, not silence, don't go here. Seating for 74, but never more than two full tables at any time.
In summary - I wouldn't even go back for a milkshake (which they offer). If you just want cheap beer and TVs to watch the game, you might consider it. The food is horrible, so don't put yourself through it. The fact that they call it "gourmet hamburgers" is a joke.
Bottom line - There are much better offerings in town for the same type of food, with better quality, at the same or lower prices.
There's also (or at least was) a Blueberry Hill Burger outlet at the Food Court in Fashion Valley. My overall impression of it was that it was a bit spendy and just OK. They did have a decent chili burger, IIRC, so that's a plus in my book over places like Hodad's, but I wouldn't have made a special trip to the mall to eat there.
Replaced by Sarku Japan.
I did some research on Blueberry Hill, and their origins are interesting. They started as a catering business in Irvine, then turned into a small restaurant chain and catering, then were sold in 2002 to become just a restaurant chain (the catering business still being owned by the original creators). Since then, apparently they have turned to garbage and I guess are franchised like crazy.
Too bad. The original idea for their food seemed good, and it's hard to imagine how they got to where they are (besides poor decision making).