North Hollywood, CA – Jack’s Classic Hamburgers

Underneath “Hamburgers” the sign says “Old Fashioned”. So I am not sure if it is Jack’s Classic Old Fashioned Hamburgers? Or? And I wasn’t able to ascertain what was old fashioned about the burgers, and didn’t get a chance to ask Jack, even tho he stopped by to see how well his burger slave was getting along that day.

Business must be good, Jack was driving a fancy new SUV.

This North Hollywood sidewalk stand, at the corner of Riverside and Moorpark, has been around since before beef was invented. Yes, back then, they had Jack’s Original Stick Burgers. I swear.

But there were no sticks at Jack’s today. My ex-wife won’t remember it, but we had a “significant” night here a few decades ago. I didn’t go looking for it today, just bumped into it. I was really looking for some place that might serve an abalone burger, and might have the word “Ranch” in the name, and might be near the Burbank Equestrian Center. But I didn’t, so I don’t know if it did, and it wasn’t.

Ambling up to the window at Jack’s, looked at the menu, boldly proclaimed my decision and ordered a cheeseburger, chili fries, and a bottle of water. Burger cooker said “want everything on that?” And I answered “yes”, without a moment’s hesitation, having no idea what “everything” would encompass.

Burger cooker gave me my water (wow, it had Jack’s OWN label on it! Cool. I want my own bottled water!) Burger cooker said “it will be out in a minute.” I glanced over the counter and saw the MOC (method of cooking) was a griddle. The patties were frozen, and huge, but shrunk down to about half the diameter after cooking.

I sat down at an outside table and wrote a couple of postcards (a quirk of mine), while waiting for the burger.

It was ready damned quick, and out it came, in two baskets, the burger, and the fries. With a twist, in that, I had said “cheeseburger and chili fries” and what came out was a chili burger and fries. No matter.

“Everything on it” was the usual stuff, lettuce, tomato, mayo, onion, pickle, but hard to find under all that chili. I dutifully forked the chili over to the fries. That accomplished, I bit into the burger, and it was pretty good. The chili was a step up from usual institutional chili, the fries were shoestring and undercooked.

But the sun was shining, and as Randy Newman would say “It’s just another perfect day…..I love L.A.!”

The sidewalk sign said “free refills”, but I found out this doesn’t apply to slipping a new patty between your empty bun.  Darn.

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