I love a good burger. Who doesn’t? So after hearing great reviews about two burger places outside of DTLA, I decided to jump in the car and take a road trip… to Koreatown. Okay, it was a short road trip.
First up was Cassell’s Hamburgers on the corner of 6th and Normandie. Cassell’s is a Los Angeles institution that dates back to 1948. It disappeared for a while, but re-opened last year at the historic and newly renovated Normandie Hotel. The restaurant looks like a classic 1950’s diner and the staff is super friendly. I ordered the 1/3 lb. cheeseburger ($11.99). It’s a house ground prime beef patty served with Thousand Island dressing, L.T.O.P. (lettuce, tomato, onion and pickle) on a Parker House bun plus a side of their famous potato salad. The burger was good, nothing to rave about, but the potato salad was chocked full of horseradish. It was impossible to eat. I’m glad I tried Cassell’s but I don’t need to go back anytime soon. There are better burgers right here in DTLA.
It was a very different story at The Original Ramen Burger on Vermont Avenue just north of 3rd Street. Don’t blink of you will miss it. It’s just a walk-up window behind the bus stop. I ordered the Original, a prime ground chuck patty sandwiched between two buns made of freshly cut ramen noodles. They add this special shoyu glaze. Delicious. It’s a hamburger and ramen noodles at the same time. Perfection. Okay, here’s my complaint with this place… parking in the area is a nightmare. We parked in the shopping center next door despite the tow-away signs, and because this is a walk-up window, there is no place to sit and enjoy your food. We had to eat in the car. You know what? I need to stop my whining because Ramen Burger is worth the trouble. Now we just need to get them to open a Ramen Burger in DTLA.
Cassell’s Hamburgers 3600 W. 6th Street (at Normandie) Koreatown 213.387.5502
The Original Ramen Burger 239 Vermont Avenue (just north of 3rd) Koreatown