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Aug 26, 2008 01:22 PM

The Oinkster - Going Downhill

As a big fan of The Oinkster, I have to say I've been quite underwhelmed lately by the food and service. We tried it again last night with my in-laws.

My quarter chicken came out a good 5-7 minutes before everyone else's food which is a no-no in my book, even at this type of establishment. My fries tasted stale, were cold by the time I started eating them, and I had to ask for the aioli. Chicken was ok, but Mr. Suebee thought the usually succulent pulled pork was dry and just not as good as he remembered. I mentioned my opinion of the fries to the girl who cleared our trays but she didn't really seem to care.

To be honest, lately it feels like there's just an absence of management at The Oinkster leaving a hole that's being filled with sub-par food and service. Now that the new Max has re-opened, hopefully Andre can pay some attention to The Oinkster.

Thanks for letting me vent.


2005 Colorado Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90041

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  1. Not my favorite. Not bad, but a bit inconsistent and sloppy. And, if you put black carpet in a restaurant, please vacuum frequently.

    1. I gotta agree to an extent - the last time I had a veggie burger there the bun and lettuce looked to be of lower quality than previous visits (plus the darn thing was falling apart) Plus, they always seem to be out of PB & J cupcakes when I go there...

      Well, at least the Oinksterade is still good...

      1. Your experience has been mine every time I've visited there for months now. I've given the Oinkster a shot more than once and been consistently underwhelmed with the food and the inconsistency of the quality of the food.

        Hopefully they'll get their act together or just sell it to someone who cares about running a good restaurant. After all, who doesn't want to eat at a place with a cool name like Oinkster?

        1 Reply
        1. re: mrshankly

          "Your experience has been mine every time I've visited there for months now"

          Ditto, except I'd add this has been the case (for me at least) from the beginning. Hype went a long way toward hiding its flaws.

          Interesting that Dave's Chillin" & Grillin' across the street offers a 180' experience from a hands-on, caring, on-site owner.

          Mmmm. Maybe Dave's should take over the Oinkster?

        2. I've got to agree.

          I was a sucker for the concept from the get-go, but the meals I've had there often fell short of the mark. After noticing a downgrade in the quality of their burger, I emailed them and was pleasantly surprised by the genuine interest they seemed to take in my complaint. In fact, they sent me a gift card. Sad to say, this sort of concern didn't make up for the fact the, on subsequent visits, our orders were screwed up, the burger quality continued to nosedive and, like others have said, the fries tasted cold and stale.

          Seems to me like they've got two issues - they're trying to save money by using cheaper/lower quality ingredients AND their management hasn't been up to the task when it comes to service.

          1. Folks,

            Everyone's entitled to their own opinion. I was there for dinner last night. Had the Oinkster pastrami and fries. Incredibly fantastic as it usually is. I also had a cheeseburger at Pie and Burger yesterday (It was a very good day!). They have a great burger but I think the Oinkster's is better. I've had the chicken and find it quite adequate.

            I can't think of another restaurant quite like the Oinkster. It's quite a different thing from Tops, Lucky Boy, The Hat, Tom's Burgers, etc. which to me can be grouped in the same category of fast food. The Oinkster is really in a different category to me. More thought and pride in the menu creation (e.g. gruyere cheese for the sandwiches, homemade catsup and mustard, oinksterade instead of lemonade, etc. etc.).

            It's hard for me to understand how this "specialness" isn't recognized by the critical posters. To me, there is no substitute for the Oinkster. It's the casualness of the fast-food experience when you want that informality, but with some exceptionally tasty food. The gratification I got last night from that sandwich was at least as much as some very enjoyable-but-hugely-expensive meals I've had at fine dining restaurants.

            The service has always been fine for me. Last night one of the guys came outside and asked how everything was; the counter-girl was super-friendly. I've probably eaten there 50 times since they've opened and NEVER had the slightest problem with the service.

            Long live the Oinkster!

            2 Replies
            1. re: jerry200

              Well, there's no accounting for taste. I was enthusiastic about going to the Oinkster when it first opened but found it to be a very ordinary kind of place with awesomely tasty PR (at least initially). If you frequently double-cook fries yourself from a variety of potato types, the famed Oinkster frites seemed flavorless and uninteresting, though certainly better than cardboard. The pastrami was just OK, and my dessert -- some kind of ice cream concoction as I recall -- was good but could not compare to similar items at Fosselman's, Glacier, Handel's, etc.

              But, we're all looking for different things and have different tools of taste, so best of luck to the Oinkster and its fans!

              1. re: jerry200

                I agree with this 100% based on about 35-40 visits.