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Seven Brothers

22 Apr

Seven Brothers

Kahuku Sugar Mill

56-565 Kamehameha Hwy

Kahuku, HI 96731

Hours: Mon-Sat 11am-9pm / Closed Sunday

BruceIronBurger

Bruce Irons

Seven Brothers burgers will be my burger lifeline on this island the next three years, even if I do have to drive almost an hour to get to it.

I have eaten my way through a good chunk of burgers here, as you will soon see, and most of them are a pretty big disappointments. There have been a few notable places such as Teddy’s, which has become a regular spot for me, The Counter and The Honolulu Burger Co, but Seven Brother’s satisfies that burger hole left in my heart by all the wonderful California greasy spoons.

Now their burgers are much more elaborate than my usual thousand island dressing, cheese and lettuce burgers which long for, but they have that flavorful, handmade taste, where each element compliments each other that I have been longing for. Doesn’t hurt that this is one of the only places I have found on this island that uses thousand island dressing

ShemBurger

Shem Burger

My go to burger is there Shem Burger. It is guacamole with diced tomatoes, ย lemon juice, two strips of bacon, and ย American cheese, plus thousand island dressing. It is a messy wonderful experience and my mouth has begun watering just thinking about it.

Now for a throwback to my Utah days. Their burgers don’t come with fries, but more of a soggy potato wedge type thing. Now don’t get turned off by my use of the word soggy, they are amazing, well seasoned, a little crunch around the edges, but in no way the type of crunch you’d expect with traditional fries or wedges. They reminded me a lot of the fries I grew to love in Utah. To top off the Utah flashback, they are served with delicious fry sauce!

If you are ever in Oahu, traveling along North Shore make sure you stop by Seven Brothers.

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A Good Burger, with the Worse Service

20 Mar

The Shack – Kailua

1051 Keolu Dr

Kailua, HI 96734

Hours: Mon-Thurs 11am-11pm / Fri & Sat 11am-Midnight / Sun 11am-10pm

ChiliCheeseFries

Chili Cheese Fries

The Shack in Kailua was one of the first decent burgers I had after I moved here and as you’ll see those will be few and far between. Despite this being one of the few good burgers I have stumbled discovered the service here was beyond horrible, to the point where I nearly have zero desire to go back.

Before I complain about the service I’ll take some time to highlight the food. We started off our meal with an order of chili cheese fries. The chili, although not the traditional chili I’m use to having on fries was OK. It had a lot of beans and large slices of red onions. It could have used a little more cheese a little more salt, but overall it wasn’t a horrible appetizer.

MushroomBurger

Swiss and Shroom

For the burgers we ordered the “Swiss and Shroom” burger and their Ruben burger. Both were good, and beautiful to look at, with a good amount of toppings. I will say although the “shroom” was nice and cheesy, the pastrami and thousand island dressing on the Ruben put it over the top and made it the clear winner between the two burgers. As with the fries, the beef could have used a little more seasoning, but I’ve learned in my 6 or so months here I have learned that’s an ongoing problem at local restaurants.

To drink I had a lava flow. For those of you who have not been to Hawaii and don’t know what a lava flow is, it is essentially a pina colada with strawberry sauce. The Shack in Kailua is one of the best lava flows I have had so far. Most places add too much strawberry and over mix making the drink too sweet and very artificial tasting. The Shack delivered a beautiful drink well balanced. The strawberry flavoring was not too sweet or artificial tasting and they did not add so much as to overpower the wonderful taste of a pina colada.

PastramiBurger

Ruben Burger

Now for the bad. Although we went on a Saturday afternoon, the place was not too crowded and clearly well staffed yet. We had to wait way too long for everything and our waitress never paid attention to us. Once she took our orders and delivered our food she was done attending to us. My boyfriend ran out of soda before he was halfway through his burger yet never got a refill, although he did try to get our waitress’s attention many times. Not once did she check to see if I wanted a refill on my lava flow. By the time we finally got her attention we just wanted our check. She didn’t ask if we’d like to order anything or needed refills, not even a box. It took her over 10 minutes to get us our check.

Although a part of me would like to give the food another shot, I never want to deal with service like this again.

The Hot Spot

12 Mar
TheHotSpotMiniTacos

Mini Tacos

The Hot Spot

115 W Main St

Salina, UT 84654

Hours: Mon-Thurs 10am-9pm / Sun Closed

From my last two posts, it should be clear that Mom’s Cafe is my go to spot when in Utah, The Hot Spot is a super close second, practically a tie.

The Hot Spot is located right down the street from Mom’s Cafe. It is an adorable tiny drive thru, with walk up windows and picnic tables for those who would like to eat there. The menu consists of chicken strips, fries, burgers, sandwiches, burritos and tacos, as well as a massive drink menu including soda concoctions and shakes.

My go to meal at the Hot Spot is their chicken strips and fries. When I was little I’d get the regular fries, but during my time living there this summer I moved onto sweet potato fries, mmmm. ย The food is prepared fresh so the chicken strips always come out piping hot. I can’t recall the original fries, as before moving there this summer I had not been in Utah for almost 5 years. The sweet potato fries though were excellent. Crunchy on the outside and creamy on the inside. They really reminded me of sweet potato fries I used to get on campus at CSUF. To top it all off, their ranch is amazing!

My mom’s go to choice at the hot spot is their mini tacos. Tiny tacos drenched in cheese. I’ve never tried them, but she absolutely loves them.

If you find yourself in Salina and don’t have time for a full sit down meal at Mom’s, you have to at least let yourself drive thru The Hot Spot.

TheHotSpotChickenBasket

Chicken Strips and Sweet Potato Fries

Mom’s Cafe

27 Feb

Mom’s Cafe

10 E Main St

Salina, UT 84654

Sun-Thurs 7am-9pm / Fri & Sat 7am-10pm

MomsCafeBeefDip

Hot Beef Dip

You may not know it, but when you hear the words “small town life” or “small town diner” you are thinking of Mom’s Cafe. Located on probably one of the last corners of main street USA in a town you’ve probably never heard of, and located nowhere near anywhere you’d ever find yourself, is the restaurant which alone is worth a detour if you ever find yourself anywhere near the state of Utah. If you live there, even better. Grab a car, grab a friend, and hit the road.

Mom’s Cafe is located one town over from where I was living in Utah, the town where my grandmother grew up, and in fact is where my grandmother worked when she was young.

MomsCafeSalad

Salad Bar Creation

From the outside the place doesn’t look like much and inside is dated, but in the most wonderful way ever. People know people here and if they don’t know you they will soon. The waitresses are fun, quick (for a small town) and friendly. The food is hot, fresh, and taste like something your mom or grandma would make. It’s not a place for low calories, it’s a place to relax, indulge and enjoy.

Enough raving, on to the food. My go to dish is there chicken strip dinner, and yes it’s been my go to dish since I was 10. It comes with 2 or 3 giant chicken strips, mixed veggies, mashed potatoes (sometimes served with white gravy or times chicken), a trip to the salad bar to kick off your meal and a heaven in your mouth scone, slathered in honey butter to finish it all off.

MomsCafeChickenStrip

Chicken Strip Dinner

The salad bar isn’t super fancy and at times can be a little sparse, but they always have croutons, fresh lettuce, and the best ranch dressing ever, so I couldn’t be happier. The chicken strips are fried perfectly, not too greasy, moist on the inside, and crunchy on the outside. Paired with their to die for ranch and OMG. The veggies I will skip, because they may be canned, but there is too much goodness to complain. Their mashed potatoes are perfectly whipped and whichever gravy you get you won’t be disappointed.

IMG_20150914_115737506

Pastrami Cheeseburger

Last is the scones, which I will avoid going into much detail as my following post is dedicated just to them. They are just that good. Just t give a short summary, these are not the coffee house scones you are thinking of. These are golden brown, deep fried pieces of dough. I know that doesn’t sound like much, but paired with delicious honey butter, and I promise it is one of the best things you will ever eat. (Remember you don’t come here thinking about your waistline.)

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Chocolate Cream Pie

My mom’s go to dish is their beef dip and fries. Tender pieces of roast beef and a fluffy yet sturdy bun, dipped in salty savory au jus is amazing and quite filling. You also have the option of making it a little more philly cheesesteak like with roasted peppers, onions, and cheese. It is a different experience, but just as good. Their fries, I must admit, I was not a fan of to begin with, but after two months they grew on me. They are not the traditional crunchy fries I am used to in California, they are a little limp, but do have a subtle crunch to them and still super fluffy on the inside. Seasoned right, and with ranch, they are a great partner to a sandwich or burger.

Summer House

11 Feb

Summer House

2744 E Coast Hwy
Corona Del Mar, CA 92625

Hours:
Mon-Thurs 11am-9pm / Fri 11am-10pm / Sat 10am-10pm / Sun 10am-9pm

Brie Burger

Brie Burger

One of my best friends and I went here on one of my last days in California before leaving to Utah. It was our last adventure before I took off. We both love the beach and despite having been friends for over 16 years we had never been to the beach together. Luckily for us, both of us absolutely love Corona Del Mar.

BurgerCombo

Before hitting the sand, we decided to stop for lunch. How could I skip out on a food opportunity. Located right off of PCH, Summer House was the perfect choice. Immediately after walking in, my friend and I were in love. Summer House is absolutely adorable. Food and service is pretty good too.

FishandChips

Fish and Chips

My friend ordered their brie burger and I got their fish and chips. Now I am not a huge fan of brie so I did not try the burger, but my friend said it was amazing and I trust her. The burger was massive, but gorgeous to look at. Normally my friend has a lot of leftovers, but with this burger she finished almost the whole thing.

FishnChips

The fish and chips were excellent, but just slightly under seasoned. The fish was perfectly flaky and not oily at all. Now I am not a fan of shoestring fries, but in comparison to other places, these were pretty good.

If you are ever down in the OC and looking for a bite to eat in Newport, I highly recommend stopping by Summer House.

Grand Burger

30 Sep

Grand Burger

710 S Grand Ave
Glendora, CA 91740

Hours:
Mon-Sat 6am-11pm / Sun 6am-10pm

**Second location in Rancho Cucamonga**

CheeseburgerCombo

Cheeseburger Combo

I really wanted to like Grand Burger. I was living in Covina at the time and really craving some classic comfort from a perfect burger. I didn’t want to drive all the way over to my classic go to, Colima Burger, and Yelp photos made Grand Burger seem promising.

Overall Grand Burger wasn’t a bad experience, but for a little over $8 it is a little pricey compared to other greasy spoons in the area. The burger wasn’t amazing and in fact reminded me very much of a Carl’s Jr. burger. It also had way too much lettuce. On the plus side I did really enjoy their fries, hot and crunchy with a nice fluffy inside, and the service was very polite. Overall, however I don’t think it is worth the cost.

The Grill – Fullerton, CA

9 Sep

The Grill

2401 E Orangethorpe Ave
Fullerton, CA 92831

Hours:
Mon – Sat 6am-10pm / Sun 7am-10pm

CheeseburgerCombo

I got my dog fixed right next door, but never thought to eat here until searching for a burger place on my way home from work that wouldn’t require me changing my route at all. The Grill happened to be the first place I came across and wow am I happy I did.

This place was packed; Thursday afternoon lunch rush and every table in the place was taken. I was lucky to snag the table I did, perfect timing to wander by a table as a group of men in suites slid out.

Now this place is like a greasy burger joint and a family dining establishment, think Denny’s, had a lovechild. The menu is set up like a greasy spoon, big menu up above the registers, and you order like any other burger place. After that however you get to take a seat in a comfy, clean booth, and they deliver the food to your table.

I ordered their basic combo and when it was set down on me I was scared. I thought I was about to be very disappointed. Huge portion of fries, but the meat looked frozen and fake and the sandwich looked like it was over ran by lettuce.

It was a pretty burger, but looked very low quality. Luckily it didn’t taste low quality at all. The fries were crispy and flavorful. The meat was juicy and well cooked. The butter lettuce, although abundant, was delicious on the burger and melded well with all the other ingredients.