Tag Archives: Burgers

Back to Umami

by Brian

So I reviewed this place shortly after opening last year. Let’s just say that I wasn’t impressed. I’ve been in since, but I was bored tonight so I decided to give them the full EMC treatment.

Umami Burger – Thousand Oaks (The Lakes shopping center)

I went into Umami tonight because, honestly, I felt sorry for them. The whole shopping center felt void of human presence. In fact, when I asked the barman (who is also the manager) why it was so empty, he told me that January is the worst month for restaurants. I’m not going to argue with him because it seemed as though myself and the party of six out-of-towners were the only patrons tonight.

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Still, I decided to sit at the bar and have dinner. I figured that, at the very least, my food would be up quickly. The first drawback, though, was trying to actually sit down. It seems that the seats at the bar are constructed from re-purposed bug zappers, fashioned into the shape of ass-hammocks. See exhibit A below:

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Filed under Thousand Oaks, Ventura County

Umami Mia!

by Brian

So it’s been a year since Mikey has posted and more than two since I’ve been able to come up with anything good to write.  First, I’d just like to say that, no, I wasn’t on hunger strike.  I was working my way toward a law degree and all the fame and fortune that comes with it.  Ironically, I am now in the exact same state as I was when Mikey and I started this site a little over three years ago.  I am currently unemployed.

Alas, a kid’s gotta eat.  So here’s a little post about one of my latest dining adventures at the newest Thousand Oaks hotspot, Umami Burger.

Umami Burger – Thousand Oaks

Okay, I’ll be the first to admit.  I love me some burger goodness.  After all, we’ve had some great ones here at EatMeCalifornia.  The best among them, in my humble opinion, is the Father’s Office burger.  We’ve also had great burgers at The Apple Pan and, of all places, PJ’s dive bar.  With that said, I have to admit that I’ve been hearing the siren’s song that is Umami for quite a few years now, and this, this!, was my chance to dive right in. Continue reading

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Filed under Thousand Oaks, Ventura County

It’s good to know your Neighborhood

by Brian

In the month that I’ve been living in San Diego, I’ve had the privilege of eating at some awesome places.  One place, however, has risen above the rest and now qualifies as my home base.  That place, my friends, is the Neighborhood.

Neighborhood is a bar, first and foremost.  They are actually the closest thing to Father’s Office that San Diego can offer.  They have a great selection of craft brews and Belgian ales, and a nice wine list as well.  Recently they have also introduced hard liquor to the bar, in the form of two specialty cocktails which I have yet to try.  All I know is that one of the drinks is made with Hendrick’s Gin, which is really all anyone needs to know in assessing quality.  Here is a picture of my favorite part of the Neighborhood:

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As I said before, they have a pretty impressive beer selection.  They also have a happy hour from 4-7 during the week, and during that happy hour all San Diego beers are 2 for 1.  I’ve never seen a 2 for 1 happy hour with drinks before, and I’m not even sure if it’s legal, but I like where they’re going with the idea.  The last thing I will say about the beer menu is that it changes frequently.  If you’re looking to get your normal Stella or Newcastle, then this is not the place for you.  However, if you are looking to experiment with a few amazing IPAs, then I highly recommend them.  Like Father’s Office, the service staff is very knowledgeable about their beers and are always willing to let you have a little taste before you commit. Continue reading

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Filed under East Village, San Diego

Turf Supper Club and new beginnings…

by Brian

Hey everyone,  I’m sure at least a few of you have noticed that I haven’t posted in almost three weeks.  For those of you who haven’t, you must just visit the site because of Mikey’s unwavering dedication.  The reason that I haven’t been posting is that I’ve been pretty busy lately.  I moved to San Diego and started law school.  Today was actually my first day of real classes, and I just got done with my reading, so I figured I’d give you guys my first San Diego food review as a local.  Here we go…

Turf Supper Club – Golden Hill

Turf is your traditional dive bar.  That’s not to say that it is dirty or slum-like in any way; it’s very dark and just conveys that old-school vibe that you would associate with a dive.  The aforementioned lighting, red booths and old movies playing on the TV discourage the yuppie crowd from putting in an appearance and the resulting group is a blend of locals with a slight influx of hipster.

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I found this place through my friend Alexis, who lives in (or on?) Golden Hill.  She conned me into helping her unload her moving van this past weekend by offering free food and beer.  What starving college student can say no to that? Continue reading

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Filed under Golden Hill, San Diego

Man Vs Food Las Vegas

by Mikey

Adam Richman takes on the B3 at the NASCAR Café in Las Vegas and hits some other great spots around Vegas. Only 2 people have eaten an entire B3.  Would Adam be number 3?

Man Vs Food – Las Vegas

Adam starts the trip at Hash House A-Go-Go off the strip. Everything in the place is huge, from the 16 inch pancakes to the enormous fried chicken eggs benedict.  No, that’s not a spelling error.  They actually have a fried chicken eggs benedict.  Half the things on this dish are grilled, including the mashed potatoes and the cheese.  They actually grill the cheese by itself.  Then it’s covered in homemade biscuits, tomatoes, bacon, sauce and eggs.  If you’re trying to give your body a heart attack test this would probably be a great way.  This joint even has bacon in the waffles.  I’d probably have a stroke just parking my car there.

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Filed under On TV

Breakfast at Jim and Rob’s Fresh Grill

by Mikey

We need more places around the area that give us a decent breakfast for a good price, that isn’t fast food and isn’t the highly marketed 10 minute “eat it and then get out ’cause we need the table for the next group” kinda place. I think I found a good option in Ventura that has a simple menu, good prices and fresh ingredients.  Plus, it’s next to a cool little coffee joint called Caffrodite’s.

Jim & Rob’s Fresh Grill – Main St not to far from Ventura High school

You’re gonna have to keep a sharp eye out for them, but they are right on a corner. They look more like a taco stand than a place to get breakfast, but they have great outside seating.  Ventura is a place that’s perfect for outside seating.  The weather changes are, for the most part, very small.  So most of the time you actually want to be outside enjoying a great meal.

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There are no servers here.  It’s an order it and then pick it up kind of place, which means you only have to tip the cooks if you want to.  The food is pretty good though, so you’ll probably want to give them a tip.  I enjoyed my breakfast so much that I gave them a great tip. “Never play leap frog with a unicorn!” Now if that’s not a good tip then I don’t know what is. Continue reading

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Filed under Ventura, Ventura County

Father’s Office – Epic Burgers and Brews

by Brian

This is a place I’ve been wanting to try for quite a while.  Lucky for me, we had a few readers who wanted to try it too.  So last week, after a long day of work, I hopped in my car and cruised down PCH to Santa Monica toward an evening that can only be described as epic.  Out of the three people I was meeting for dinner, I had only met one.  My buddy Chris, who actually shot the pictures for this post, was in town from NYC and wanted to find out if the burgers were as good as everyone said.  The other members of our group were Liisa, who is an awesome and frequent commenter on the site and Courtney, a NYC transplant who is just starting to figure out how awesome L.A. is.  I was glad that EatMeCalifornia could help with that.

Father’s Office – On Montana Ave., between 10th and 11th Streets, Santa Monica

FO Sign

Father’s Office was very similar to another one of my favorite burger joints: The Apple Pan.  They’re both tiny, hole-in-the-wall places, they’re both famous for their burgers and they both strive to keep things simple.  Father’s Office is a little more “upscale” than The Apple Pan, but has a similar attitude when it comes to dining in their fine establishment.  The Apple Pan makes you wait your turn, standing around the lone counter, but FO, once filled to capacity, forms a line outside so you can patiently wait your turn to go inside.  Both places also frown on substitutions, with the Apple Pan being the more lenient.  If you want something changed at Father’s Office, they’ll just turn you down.

So this place is not for the picky.  What else?  It’s not for big groups either.  In fact, the four of us lucked out with getting our table.  Courtney and I got their early and shared half of a table with two random dudes.  When Liisa and Chris met us inside, the guys were just leaving so we got to snag their seats.  I don’t think that’s the norm, as I spied a ton of people just hovering around waiting to slip into an open seat.  If the worst thing I can say about a place is that it’s hard to get a seat, you know it must be good.

Once we were settled into our table we went to the bar and placed our orders.  At FO, there are no waiters, just busboys who bring out your food and take away your empty beer glasses.  Speaking of beer, FO has one of the most impressive selections of beer that you’ll find anywhere.  They have about 30 beers on draft and plenty more in bottles, with their specialties being California microbrews and Belgian ales.  They also have a good wine selection, which hopefully Liisa will comment on because I stuck to the beer.  With so many amazing choices on tap, how could I not?

I could write a whole post on the beers I tried, but this is a food website, so I’ll give you what you want: just the facts food.

FO Burger

I quickly realized that nearly every single person in this place was gettin’ down on the burger.  Not that I was shocked, mind you, just aware.  I had heard about the unique Father’s Office burger, but until I actually took my first bite, I just figured it was all hype.  It was not. Continue reading

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Filed under Los Angeles Area, Santa Monica