Although few and far between, old-fashioned hamburger joints still exist in LA. One of these is the Apple Pan, which opened in 1947, so you know it’s good.
When I walked in, the place was packed and every seat at the boardroom meeting-style counter was taken. There was no waiting list, so we had to find a couple diners to stand behind in the hopes that they would leave soon.
Our gamble paid off and we were soon able to take our seats. The menu is a pretty basic one, and my friend suggested the hickoryburger, which sounded good, if not mildly 19th-century presidential. Unfortunately, it comes with mayo, pickles, lettuce and their special sauce. The special sauce is essentially 1,000 island dressing with relish in it. Relish is just a fancy name for ground pickles, (see my rant on pickles here) so I couldn’t get the special sauce either. I really don’t understand the point of relish. Pickles alone are so vile, did someone think that if they chopped them up into little bits, people wouldn’t notice that they were still pickles? You’ll never find pickles snuck into a special sauce, but relish is always ready to weasel it’s way into a sauce and ruin it unbeknownst to the untrained unvegan. Luckily, this unvegan knew of the relish sauce, so I just ordered my hickoryburger with cheese and ketchup, and fries on the side.
When it came, it looked just as I had dreamed, albeit a little small. The taste of hickory was strong, but not overpowering, and tasted great with the cheddar and ketchup. The fries were perfectly well-done and came with a smattering of ketchup. Everything went down smooth, except for the price ($6.10 for a burger? really?). Oh well, it is certainly worth the price every once in a while.