First timers to Los Angeles should just get the In-N-Out experience out of the way upon arrival. They built a franchise right by LAX to knock out this compulsory bit of food tourism right away; that way, you can focus on getting better food during the rest of your stay. How thoughtful. But once you’ve digested your Double-Double and you’re ready for another, altogether different burger experience, go check out The Golden State on Fairfax.
Walking in, you’re greeted by a room that is desperately searching for some sort of identity. And it’s cute. Almost makes you root for the place even more. California state flags and modern movie scene paintings from the not-quite-ready-for-Gallery-1988 pile adorn the walls. What are you doing, Golden State? You scamp. Let other places mess around with the Hollywood aesthetic. Just focus on your burgers. And to its credit, The Golden State does just that. No frills with fresh, slightly more sophisticated ingredients (i.e. arugula instead of iceberg lettuce), the burger at Golden State is the Acura you buy after that first promotion, ready to ditch the ’98 Civic hand-me-down that got you this far. It’s a sensible upgrade from the floor model burger that isn’t going to turn heads, but you’ll leave content, full, and with no regrets. Snag some sweet potato steak fries with your burger and let the friends you’re staying with know you’ve found a new burger place for them to try that doesn’t require knowledge of a secret menu to get the best meal they offer.
For more info go HERE or just stop on by 426 N. Fairfax Avenue when you're in Los Angeles.
-Justin Caffier is a writer and comedian in Los Angeles