Exciting news in the world of burgers: Smashburger has finally arrived in Los Angeles. The chain, which has been growing steadily since opening its first outpost in Denver several years ago, is known for its patties, which are actually smashed from meatballs. The resulting burger is thus juicier and more evenly cooked, according to Tom Ryan, the founder of Smashburger. I was able to sample one of these “smashburgers” today during a media-comped event to kick off the restaurant in Culver City. Pics and impressions after the jump…
Here’s the restaurant, located on the corner of Venice and Overland in Culver City. Tom Ryan is the man in the center with gray hair being interviewed. I know you all were wondering.
As this is Los Angeles, the event featured a red carpet and a step-and-repeat. Oh, and Tom Arnold was there too.
I’m still wondering why Smashmouth wasn’t in attendance. It just seems like a natural tie-in.
Here’s a simplified version of the menu. Other menus feature full descriptions; so don’t freak out. Note the reasonable price points (for LA standards).
I ordered the L.A. Burger, a restaurant-specific burger available only at the Culver location. Among other things, it featured a wonton, cilantro, and a gingery sauce. Also, I opted for sweet potato fries.
My friend opted for the avocado club burger with a side of haystack onions.
And my other friend, the inimitable Lisa Timmons, snagged herself a BBQ Bacon and Cheddar burger with rosemary French fries.
Extra points for a lovely and tasty bun (this sesame bun was specific to the L.A. Burger).
One miiiiinor quibble, and this is not a big deal, but it has to be mentioned: the lettuce leaves on the burgers were so enormous that they actually got in the way of eating the burger. I would never normally mention something as silly as this, and I would never tell anyone to not go because of giant lettuce, but just a friendly suggestion to the kitchen: cut that lettuce smaller, yo!
Luckily, there’s an easy fix.
Here’s me eating my burger. Note the huge lettuce.
And here’s me getting lettuce stuck up my nose and sauce all over my face as a result.
Our wonderful server A.J. brought us several shake samples. This one here is your classic chocolate variety. The Nutter-Butter and Oreo ones were huge hits. And so was the vanilla, come to think of it. Basically, we just love shakes.
Ultimately we all had a great time and left full and contented. Welcome to LA, Smashburggggies!
10704 Venice Blvd, #B, Ste. 330
Culver City, CA 90232