FATHER’S OFFICE – Los Angeles
1018 Montana Ave, Santa Monica CA 90403
Date Dined: 8.28.11
The burger craze that took over New York a few years ago has not quite hit L.A. yet. If you ask someone from L.A. what the best burger is, you will generally hear the same 3 or 4 names every time. Father’s Office is one of them. When I went out there for the first time in August my two requests were to have In-n-Out Burger (obviously) and the “best” burger. I don’t know about In-n-Out, maybe I’ll review that another day, but I am putting the Father’s Office burger on my Top 10 Burgers list because it was so delicious and also had some key differentiating features.
The dry-aged beef gives the burger a much more expensive flavor than the comparative bargain $12.50 price tag would suggest. Cooked to medium-rare perfection, the meat is so succulent and juicy that it runs through your fingers when you take a bite. You always know a real burger veteran when they err on the side of rare rather than medium. You’ve won my heart right there, Sang Yoon.
The meat is draped in two different cheeses- Maytag Blue and Gruyere- giving a much stronger cheese flavor to the burger but with the stretchy, stringiness you want from your cheese. Sweet caramelized onion jam compliments the gooey combination. And then as if that weren’t enough, they go ahead and put a few slices of bacon on for a bit more salt and smokey flavor.
To freshen the whole sandwich is a good sized bunch of leafy, peppery arugula which counteracts a bit of the greasiness.
Finally the bun. My main pet peeve with burgers (besides being overcooked) is a bun that is the wrong size. Too big and you end up having to tear a bunch off, too small and your ingredients start falling out. F.O. serves a crusty french roll which is able to stand up to all of its fillings.
There are two options for fries, regular with garlic parsley aioli or sweet potato with roasted garlic and cabrales blue cheese aioli. This is probably the only time I have ever said this but but the sweet potato fries were far superior to the regular ones. They were hotter, crispier, more substantial, well seasoned…just better all around.
If you are in the mood for a great burger while traveling out in L.A. definitely make the detour from wherever you are to Father’s Office.