FOOD + DRINK, RESTAURANTS | January 16, 2008

Not your Father’s Office | Review of a Pub in LA and their burgers

father\'s office on Montana Ave in Santa Monica

For our last night in LA, we wanted to eat some comfort food. So we went on a hunt for the best burger in town. And a local pub from the list of 101 reasons why to live in Los Angeles grabbed my attention.

Father’s Office is not your typical place. It is a neighborhood meeting place like we find in Europe. Founded 50 years ago, it is very popular with the locals today.

In fact, I heard the doorman saying to a man ordering some take-outs outside that a second pub twice the size of the original is scheduled to open soon. The fact that a man has to order his take out outside is a definite proof that they observed a strict policy on capacity. Since he did not want to wait in line, a waiter met him outside to take his order. With a maximum capacity of 76 persons, we waited in line 10 or 15 minutes on a Monday night at 8 o’clock.

The local customs

We heard while waiting in line some comments than suggested the place works differently. So we asked our friendly doorman for tips on how it works. He told us that the first thing to do once we get in is to find a free table. It usually means spotting the ones that are almost finished. The first person who arrived at a table gets it. There were many people on the hunt but my husband luckily found us a space for 2 at the five minutes later. He is the best!

Then, you go to the bar and order your food and drinks. You get your beer right away and a number for your food. Make your number visible so the servers can bring your food to the table. Most of their beers are from micro-brewers. We enjoy the taste of our AleSmith Brewing beer.

What differentiate Father’s Office burgers from the rest?

In three words: their unique recipe. And when I say unique it has double meaning. They only make one burger served with the same condiments. They have an absolute No Alterations or Substitutions policy. Their $12 burger is made of a plump of dry, aged beef stacked high with Gruyere, Maytag blue cheese, caramelized onions, applewood bacon compote, and arugula. Your burger is no served either with the usual burger bread. It was absolutely delicious.

Since the mad cow disease, everyone is ordering their burgers well-done in Canada. With such premium ground beef, it would be a crime. We ordered ours medium and the meat showed the right pink red center. We later saw locals ordering bloody burger, so you do not have to be afraid.

Not just burger

On the whimsical side, their fries “A la cart” may be served in a double serving-size shopping cart. Our fries were served in our basket, like half the room. You can order regular fries (long tiny ones with herbs, served with an aioli sauce) or sweet potatoes.

Beside the famous burger, their daily specials and the anything else on the menu look very tempting. The night we were there, an inviting French Seabass was on the chalkboard menu. If you are two girls, there is plenty to share a burger and fries.

We enjoyed our time at Father’s Office because of the food and the atmosphere. My only complaint, which is not their fault, is an incident with a clueless guy on table manner. Find out the details by reading my next post.

Sourcing:
Learn more: Father’s Office on Montana Avenue in Santa Monica

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