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Mar 11, 2014 04:43 PM


What's the most DELICIOUS hamburger on the Westside??????

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  1. What's your definition of the westside? My favorite Burger is at Golden State on Fairfax.

    Wikipedia definition of the westside "It has no official definition, but, according to the Los Angeles Times, it comprises 101.28 square miles (262 km2), encompassing not only districts in the city of Los Angeles but also two unincorporated neighborhoods, plus the cities of Beverly Hills, Culver City, and Santa Monica. However, there is a common saying, among persons who live west of Lincoln, known as "AWOL", which stands for "Always West Of Lincoln (Blvd)". The definition of the Westside, amongst elitists, is the swath of land that extends North of the 105 Freeway (Or LAX Airport) up to and including Malibu and West of Lincoln Blvd or the 405 Freeway."

    10 Replies
    1. re: wienermobile

      So I finally made it to Golden State. Absurd I haven't been there because it's five minutes away. But now I have.

      Had The Burger.

      Thanks to this thread, I already had a burger at Fab yesterday (with a ripper side, just to, you know, taste it.) So I promised myself I would just get a burger at Golden State, no side order.

      But it turns out The Burger comes with a side. Am I gonna get a cucumber salad? No. Fries.'s a fine burger, but not my style. I'm sorry, but any burger joint (which it is) wherein no burger is available with lettuce or tomato, but arugula and garlic aoili and yet, ketchup?

      And $12?

      No, I say. No.


      Mostly what my burger adventure has revealed is that there are three types of burger:

      1. Classic hamburger stand. (In-n-Out, Smashburger, Apple Pan, etc.)

      2. Nouveau (I hesitate to use the word "Hipster") Burger. (Father's Office, Golden State, Umami).

      3. Restaurant burger.

      Of these three, I prefer 1 or 3. Not that there's anything wrong with #2.

      Hee hee. #2.

      1. re: jesstifer

        I think the sweet potato fries they serve with it are incredible. But for some reason, I didn't find their burger all that revelatory. It was certainly good, but it wouldn't come to my mind as great. Maybe I had too high of expectations for it....

        1. re: jesstifer

          thanx for the report. i think what i found most appealing about the Golden State Burger isn't that it was supposed to be some "revelatory" / completely new flavor combination that no one's ever thought of before, but rather they execute on a burger with all the little bits that make it something i dig. :>

          so i think some peeps in a chow thread on burgers said this already but i agree w/ them: the GS Burger uses USDA Prime, there's a good "beefiness" to it, the bun is wonderful, it's always been juicy medium rare and they nail that, and the applewood smoked bacon is crisp.

          i just find it really great in that "common" flavor spectrum that we've seen in other burger joints; but they do their's better imho.

          what's interesting jess, is that in your 3 examples, i actually really hate the #1 category a lot. i grew up on it, but i just don't like that "classic" iceburg lettuce, tomato, ketchup / 1000 island dressing on my burgers any more. same for most of my friends.

          1. re: chowseeker1999

            The beef was delish and perfectly cooked, no argument there. I had problems with the combination of flavors, though. Garlicky aioli and sweet applewood bacon and tangy ketchup and sweet bun all fought with each other, I thought. And with the absence of lettuce or onion, it had no crisp element (arugula can only make a passing attempt at crispiness), which I find indispensable in a burger.

            Different strokes.

            1. re: jesstifer

              the golden state burger should be the new default California burger. everything's right about it, whereas nothing is right about in-n-out.

              garlic on burger beats "umami" in burger anytime. arugula over iceberg, and real beef versus downer cow.

              and $12 for a relatively substantive, quality product is almost affordable in LA for restaurant burger now.

              Nick and Stef's steakhouse burger (with way, WAY too much bun), clocks in at $12 during "happy hour", and it only offers about 1/2 the joy of the golden state rendition.

              1. re: TonyC

                Tony,For some reason I thought you wouldn't be a fan of that burger.

                Though better than that are the fish & chips followed by a few sour beers.

                1. re: kevin

                  Yea, I love arugula. I love bacon. Something about that burger just didn't wow me.... ::shrugs::

                  1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                    Totally agree with you on No. 2 style burgers. The whole garlic aioli and arugula thing on overpriced $12 burgers is just so tired. Give me a classic burger with crisp lettuce, juicy tomato and tangy pickle that provide some contrast to the richer burger ingredients. All these newer style burgers that just have layer of fat on fat without anything crisp or fresh to contrast are disgusting.

                    Arugula on burgers is just too limp-wristed for me and garlic has no business on a hamburger. However, if you already have perpetual bad breath from regularly eating things like stinky tofu, no one is going to notice the additional garlic aioli fumes coming from your mouth.

                    1. re: Ernie

                      Well put, Ernie. I agree 100%. There's a reason the classic burger has mustard, onions, cool lettuce and tomato and pickles. It's all about contrasts in flavor and texture.

                      Though I can appreciate and fully enjoy the gourmet burgers with blue cheese, carmelized onions, arugula, etc., it's just not a "burger" to me.

                2. re: TonyC

                  The more I think about this, the more I disagree with Tony C. A The default California burger has lettuce, onion, tomato, pickle, orange cheese, and relish. Some items may be added or subtracted, esp. bacon, avocado, ortega chili.

                  Arugula is right out.

        2. Fabs in Westwood has a damn good one.

          17 Replies
          1. re: Servorg

            I have to second that rec. Just had a FABulous Fab Burger last week. They have Wagu beef burgers too.

            1. re: SIMIHOUND

              Just so everyone knows, Fabs in Westwood Village is on the east side of Broxton, just south of Le Conte and the UCLA border. It is in the former Sockos Subs space, but they have enlivened the outdoor patio and have indoor seating as well.

              I'm going to try their burger. I've had the simple chicken sandwich, which was tasty and juicy and a very good value.

              If it is good food at a reasonable price in Westwood Village, it needs patronage.

              1. re: nosh

                Thanks for mentioning Fab's burgers. I happen to work a stone's throw away from them.

                For those who don't know, we're talking about Fab's Hot Dogs. They are famous for their dogs, but I actually prefer their burgers. The Hatch Chili Cheddar burger rocks.

                1. re: EarlyBird

                  I tried a Bruins Combo today at Fabs -- $5.95 for cheeseburger, tots (or fires) and drink. For that price, burger was a thin patty, but not overcooked. Leaf iceberg lettuce, a slice of tomato, pickles, grilled onions (almost like a sweet jam. i can see how some may like this but off-putting to me, and melted into the cheese so i couldn't get rid of it. i'll know better next time.) Good burger, bun needed (more, if any) toasting. Tots were great -- appeared deep-fried to a crunchy exterior, not mealy like the oven-baked tots I'm used to. Very good. Friendly service.

                  Is this thin burger the one posters have liked or is that some thicker, bigger version? I probably liked the patty better, but the toasted bun, cheese, and fix-ins at In'n'Out made for a better burger, in my limited observation.

                  1. re: nosh

                    I don't recall having any thick patty there, but just well done burgers. I have to admit, I prefer my burgers fairly simple, not the bistro type with mushrooms, high end cheese and so on. The most exotic I get is bacon and that green chili, generally.

              2. re: SIMIHOUND

                I'm so excited about this! I've only been to Fab once, on a chili dog quest for my fallow (won't even mention it) blog. Their chili dog sucked, but I was fascinated by the NJ style rippers I saw going by.

                Hearing that their burgers are Chow-worthy means: I'm going tomorrow, to get a ripper and a burger! Will report back.

                More convenient for me to go the Reseda branch. Is it comparable?

                1. re: jesstifer

                  Besides the burgers and dogs the garlic ranch fries and tater tots are super good. And I do mean garlic!

                  1. re: SIMIHOUND

                    I had lunch at the Reseda Fab today. The burger was fine, but not as good as Smashburger. I had the straight up $4.50 cheeseburger w/everything (iceberg lettuce, tomato, caramelized onion, relish, pickle). Condiments and cheese were all good, and unlike someone here I loved the onions gettin' all up in the melty cheese. But the patty fell short for me. Griddled well done as at Smashburger, but not as juicy.

                    They do have a higher end "LaFreida Prime Steakburger," a 1/2 pound "grass fed short rib & chuck blend" that they serve med rare only. But it's ten bucks, and a half pound of beef is more than I really need. Next time I'd try the Hatch green chile burger or the double chili cheese.

                    The Bald Eagle Ripper, served in the style of Rutt's Hut in NJ, with house made mustard relish, OTH, was a lifechanger.

                    1. re: jesstifer

                      But, did you get the garlic tots?

                      1. re: ns1

                        Not yesterday. I had a ripper as the side to my burger. A man can only do so much!

                        I had regular tots first time I went. They were slammin. Next time garlic.

                        1. re: jesstifer

                          ripper as a side? that's boss.

                          1. re: ns1

                            I agree. They give medals out for that, don't they?

                            1. re: EarlyBird

                              "They give medals out for that, don't they?"

                              I thought that was stents they gave?

                              1. re: Servorg

                                I absolutely blame this thread for my poor health choices. I followed that up by visiting Golden State for the first time today (see below).

                                I should probably start a "Best Kale in LA?????" thread to get me through the next few days,

                                1. re: jesstifer

                                  I do too. I've been to Fab Hot Dogs twice this week, once to get their Hatch chili grilled chicken sandwich and their tater tots. My God, their tater tots!

                                  1. re: EarlyBird

                                    Fab's (Westwood) tater tots were indeed really good. Exterior more crispy than the packaged version, and interior not as chunky. Good side.

                                    1. re: nosh

                                      I had some pretty amazing tots at Congregation Ale House in Pasadena.

              1. Wolfgangs or Father's Office.

                1. My current favorites are:

                  Maison Giraud, Pacific Palisades simple but perfect
                  Next Door at Josie's, Santa Monica extremely juicy
                  The Tripel Burger, PDR a triple threat of duck confit, pork & aged beef
                  Pono, Santa Monica well done take on a classic style

                  I love burgers.....I still have many more places to try.... I love this thread!