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The Apple Pan.

Okay, I read an article recently - I think it was the L.A. Times - and someone (was it Frank Gehry?) raved about The Apple Pan and that they had "the best french fries".

I went to the Apple Pan once - a long time ago, and that was enough.

But maybe they've changed.


Those are some of the most awful french fries in the world. Frozen spuds, reconstituted. Like the kind you get in any below average greasy spoon. And the hamburger? I liked the big chunk of iceberg lettuce - gave it a nice crunch, but crunch aside, this burger just blows.

I felt angry and ripped off. I left feeling angry, I questioned Gehry's taste and judgement. (if it was him, tried finding the article on the LAT webside, but maybe I dreamed the whole thing) and every building, every art piece he ever did.

I had to go to Hal's the next day and get a really good burgers and excellent fries.

There are so many great places to eat, in this town, I hate that I spend one meal at a sub standard icon. Blech!

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  1. maybe people do like the apple pan a lot, but i do agree with you on the fries, they are not even as good as the ones at fatburger. on the other hand the, cheeseburgers at the pan along with the pies (except for the apple pie) are great.

    1. I first ate there in 1953, love the hickory burger although it is overpriced. I do not eat many french frys but the ones there are the best I have ever had.

      1. Here we go again, another boring "It blows - NO it rocks" blah blah blah thread!!!

        2 Replies
        1. re: sel

          Let's just agree that it blocks - (or is that rows?) and move on. ;-D

          1. re: sel

            You're right. That's what I don't like about Chowhound. I wish there was a better way to filter it - say, you could give certain posters whose taste you agree with - some stars. And some people, say for me - like Malibumike who actually likes the french fries I find terrible - no stars. And he could do the same for me. Then we're all happy. (of course the stars would only work for your own Chowhound experience, not a public vote).

            As it is, you have to do some legwork to get Chowhound to work for you. If someone likes a particular restaurant - I'll check and see what their favorites are. If they have some joint that I know to be a dog - I will discount their opinion and move on.

          2. What does fame and money have to do with culinary opinion?

            He's a great architect...no more, no less.

            2 Replies
            1. re: manku

              Great architect? I think he knows more about french fries. That Disney Hall looks as if the "Big One" has already hit L.A., and the food inside the Hall makes Apple Pans fries and apple pie seem great.

              1. re: JeetJet

                I would be shocked if it was Frank Gehry saying anything about fries... or food at all. Just trust me on this one, it probably wasn't him.

            2. Haha, another Apple Pan thread. These things are gonna be popping up even after apples go extinct.

              Can you fill me in on Hal's? I'm not familiar with this one.

              1 Reply
              1. Beyond Hal's, where is a good burger and fries in the area?

                4 Replies
                  1. re: Servorg

                    nearby and for about the same price or possibly cheaper is the Hole in the Wall Burger joint. You can go for Martie's for a combo burger, beeff and a dog on the same bun. or perhaps a newfangled burger of sorts at aroma cafe on overland and pico,

                    but the pan is still distinctive, i have a love/hate relationship with the place.

                  2. re: Depage

                    Father's Office in Santa Monica on Montana. No ketchup. Fries are truly terrific. (and they have perfectl sweet potato fries too).

                    If you're in Glendate - The Oinkster.

                    1. re: foodiemahoodie

                      The Oinkster is in Eagle Rock. And The Bucket, The York and Marty's (all nearby) are far better burger choices.

                  3. I'm with foodie on this one! The "Apple Pan" is one of the most overrated grease joints in L.A. Not that the burgers and fries were bad - it was a decent enough burger (and the Bob's Big Boy relish sauce was okay too). But the grub didn't match the hype, and the built-in "we are an L.A. institution so you can wait 30 minutes for a barstool" service is a bit of a turn-off.

                    2 Replies
                      1. re: OCKevin

                        i also agree.
                        the burgers were cooked in so much of their own fat so that the end result was like a deep-fat-fried burger.
                        as a kid, i worked in a burger joint, and the melted beef fat drained off the grill somehow. i don't understand why there is a puddle of melted fat on the apple pan grill that doesn't seem to drain. . . .

                      2. I just returned and as usual, it was fabulous. That might have something to do with the fact that I was raised there or............that the taste of the hickory sauce mixed with the pickle can't be beat. And the fries, if you like them crisp and crunchy, no problem there. I, like many, understand the lore and also just adore the process!

                        1. the tuna sandwich is king at apple pan! i have to agree that the burger is not a strong point for me. pie n' burger or bake and broil both do much better job on burgers and pie, with an old fashioned vibe and "quality" attitude, sadly, they are both far from my home, and the pan is 5 min away. but try the tuna or egg salad.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: jay 1

                            I have to agree with jay 1 on this. I don't have much to contribute on the burger side of things, but I do adore their egg salad sandwich on wheat bread. Overstuffed and delicious.

                            1. re: jay 1

                              Does anyone remember when Huell Howser did a "California's Gold" piece on the Apple Pan about 10 years back? BTW, I think every city has its two or three "old and established" haunts which are riding on the coattails of their history and reputation, but could be found to be overrated to some.

                              1. re: OCKevin

                                here's a junior list, usu. it's restaurants or cafes that have at least 50 yrs of history and that would be:

                                apple pan
                                musso and frank
                                phillipe the original.