Top 5 Places To Get A Good Burger In Palo Alto

Palo Alto is a community that is best reflected by the selection of restaurants and food trucks that allow residents to expand their horizons. Yet if you want to be reminded of your carnivorous habits then fear not: there are several establishments that serve burgers. For this list, fast-food will be excluded and unfortunately In-N-Out will not be included because it’s just too obvious of a selection.

Max’s Opera Café

After a long day at Stanford Shopping Center, you might crave a big chunk of meat along with a cold beer. Max’s Opera Café has a diverse menu that includes their own unique hand-smashed burgers. Patrons could choose between an 8 oz, 10 oz or 16 oz of meat along with their own toppings. The fries are also delicious but so are the in-house BBQ chips.

Slider Bar

If you are craving a burger but would also like a unique experience, you’ll want to come to Slider Bar for lunch. This burger spot is well known for its specially crafted burgers and truffle fries along with an excellent selection of beer. Because we all know miniature versions of things are just adorable to look at, even burgers.

Slider Bar, 324 University Ave, Palo Alto, CA, +1(650) 322-7300

Palo Alto Creamery Fountain and Grill

Also known as Peninsula Fountain & Grill, this classic has been the go-to spot for those in the tech industry that want to take a break for eating healthy to enjoy that American creation. Located in the center of downtown Palo Alto near University Avenue, Palo Alto Creamery Fountain and Grill has an excellent selection of burgers and other American staples.

The Old Pro

Need an ideal place to watch a game while making the best of every virtue and vice? Then stop by The Old Pro. A sports bar in the center of Palo Alto, this establishment laughs in the face of all the bourgeois restaurants. Enjoy a few beers with a juicy burger or challenge your friends to ride the mechanical bull.

The Old Pro, 541 Ramona St, Palo Alto, CA, +1(650) 326-1446

Kirk’s Steakburgers

Located at Town & Country Village, across the street from Leland Stanford Jr. University, is the perfect burger spot. Kirk’s Steakburgers is the ideal place when you are craving a monstrous burger, like the Big Kirk, along with a variety of styles of steak fries. Its location makes it the perfect burger spot to check out before or after a Cardinals game.

Kirk’s Steakburgers 855 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA, +1(650) 326-6159

Disclaimer* – The writer was listening to Cheeseburgers in Paradise by Jimmy Buffet while writing this article. That will explain the many familiar references.

Written for The Culture Trip
12/11/2015
Original Article: Top 5 Places To Get A Good Burger In Palo Alto

 

Review: Umami Palo Alto is a burger joint without the burger experience

Located on University Ave., Umami Palo Alto is the newest culinary experience to come to Palo Alto by offering a new take on the classic burger.

I first learned about this place from my friend Refugio Garcia, local freelance writer and avid burger enthusiast. Having opened only a few months ago, we were down for our regular evening of beers and burgers.

For our meal we started with Truffle’em Thin Fries along with Thin Fries while for our main meal we ordered a Manly Burger and a Truffle Burger. All of this enjoyed with a few bottles of Stone Pale Ale and Coke.

Neither one of us are fans of thin fries but we did appreciated how well it was cooked and salted. The burger was exactly to my standards with quality meat that was properly marinated and grilled. Helping the flavor was the bacon, truffle cheese and mix of veggies that took me to burger nirvana.

Despite serving a perfect burger, Umami Palo Alto has a lot of issues with the atmosphere and presentation that keeps it from becoming a good burger joint.

The most obvious would have to be the “fish out of water” decor. Walk in and you will be stumped to see the place decorated with book shelf’s packed with some of the greatest works of literature. This kind of decoration may work if this was a classy coffee shop, not a burger joint.

Its understandable that they have an urge to be original and attract the Palo Alto crowd; but there is a major difference between cliche and traditional. So obviously who ever planned the theme could not tell two apart.

With its unusual choice of decorations resulted in attracting a crowd that is out of place at a real burger joint. The crowd was mostly made up of either obnoxious vegetarians or food snobs whose idea of a “good burger” can be described as blasphemous.

The next issues has to do with the poor presentation of the meal. When our burgers were served it was just a burger on an empty plate – that is it! For restaurants in Palo Alto, presentation is everything and so it comes as a total shock when such a good burger is given a very bland presentation.

Finally to top-off all that is wrong with the setting; the final nail on the coffin is the moment when you realize this burger establishment has no bar. Sure they have an good selection of beers (like every restaurant in Palo Alto) but no bar. Also fountain drinks was not an option and we were forced to pony-up $3 per soda bottle.

The service at best was mediocre as our waitress only attended to us just to take our order and to bring out our order. Also most the waiting staff gave a vibe that feels like they are Stanford students who are upset that their parents forced them to get a job and they lacked the tech skills to join a start-up.

With great burgers but an empty meal presentation and an out of touch atmosphere makes Umami Palo Alto only good for an exploration by burger enthusiast. After that its back to the many other burger joints in the area that actually have a burger atmosphere.

Final Score: 2/5

Written for Digital Journal
02/13/2013
Original Article: Review: Umami Palo Alto is a burger joint without the burger experience