Sometimes, we just want a burger. For all the talk in recent years of healthy eating and various diet fads, there are times in our lives when nothing can beat a burger and fries. Of course, we don’t need to do without. Moderation is always the answer, as well as quality. Thankfully, there are places like Burger Lounge on Washington that allow us to partake in a burger without feeling that we’re devastating our insides, or contributing to the profit margins of a ginormous global chain with questionable work practices.
The Burger Lounge is a Cali-chain, with a bunch of locations around California, including the Bay Area and San Diego. There are eight in Los Angeles County, including the Culver restaurant.
The design of the place, inside and out, is very sleek. You could be forgiven for thinking you’re in a very hip and happening wine bar, thanks to the lighting, wall paneling, and the font on the sign. It’s also immediately noticeable that they make sure the words “grass fed” are on the main sign, an indication of the quality of the beef.
As it happens, we didn’t have the beef patties anyway, despite the fact that burgers with names like “The Husky” and the “Son of a Butcher (SOB)” were incredibly tempting. There are also bison and turkey burgers for those wanting a leaner meat, plus fish and chicken burger.
We went for the Ancient Grain Paleo Burger – two vegan patties sat on Daikon Sprouts leaves, so no bun. It’s served with grilled zucchini, grilled tomato, and avocado. We added onions and pickles, to enhance that classic burger flavor.
The key with any vegan burger is the texture. This one is very grainy and seedy – they’re not trying to ape the texture of meat and the dish is all the better for it. Most importantly, the flavor is great. It’s rich and full, and wonderfully earthy.
The child in the family had a Kids Lounge Meal, and opted for the Plant-Based Chik’n Bites. They were great, and the meal came with fries, a drink, and even a scoop of ice-cream.
Finally, we went for the Seasonal Harvest Salad. Usually at burger joints, the salads are basic at best. Iceberg lettuces and some other bits thrown on. Not here.
Arugula and baby kale is tossed with butternut squash, roasted pecans, dried cranberries, cornbread croutons, goat cheese and a cranberry vinaigrette. All of those flavors blend beautifully – the sweetness of the pecans and the muted nuttiness of the squash. The rich creaminess of the cheese and the herby crunch of the croutons. And of course the tart fruitiness of the dressing.
The Burger Lounge is full of surprises.
Burger Lounge is located at 9901 Washington Blvd., Culver City 90232. Call 310-842-8800 or visit burgerlounge.com.