Monday, April 9, 2012

Umami, Udadi!

Umami Burger, located in Costa Mesa in The Camp on Bristol street takes a new look at the classic burger joint. Opening just recently in Orange County, Umami Burger is very popular in L.A.  When we arrived at 5:30 on a Monday, the place was chaos. Our waiter told us that there would be a 20 minute wait to get seated. I felt cold, so we decided on take out.

We ordered an Umami Burger, the original, and a Manly Burger plus some sweet potato fries and a ginger beer. The Umami Burger contained parmesan crisp, tomatoes, caramelized onions, mushroom, and umami ketchup. My dad thought the mushroom added a contrasting texture. The Manly burger  came with bacon, onion crisps, melted cheese, and umami ketchup. I thought it was smokier and a touch more balanced than my dad's.

Of course, by the time we got home to eat it, nothing was hot - and the buns, while fresher than at most burger places, started to look a little soggy. They had also mislabeled our burgers. But the waiting would have been something to complain about as well. Even a to-go order at a new place has its issues: as we watched the kitchen process, we saw things packed and then unpacked, orders rejected by the waiters, and our order came about 10 minutes later than the almost identical order placed by the person after us.

Is it worth the wait? You decide. Is it worth the money? Umami Burger is pricey for what you get. Will you go for it?