Tuesday, December 28, 2021

10 Dishes to Try in Little Saigon Beyond Pho

If you’re a Vietnamese food noob, let my latest piece for TimesOC encourage you to go beyond pho and banh mi. 

In it I talk about 10 lesser known but delicious Vietnamese dishes and where to get it in Little Saigon. 

Saturday, December 04, 2021

The Perfect Burger

To me, the perfect hamburger isn’t about the patty, bun, or toppings, but the harmony that occurs when all these components balance. 

The bun must maintain its integrity from the first bite to the last without turning to mush. The patty can’t be too thick or too thin, but must have a nice char or crust, some indication that it was licked by flames or seared on a griddle. And the toppings should be nothing more than crisp iceberg, tomato, thin-sliced red onion, pickle, and a swipe of a mayo-based special sauce—never ketchup.

To me, the burger that checks all the marks is TK Burger’s in Costa Mesa. It is my perfect burger. The potato-based bun is custom-made for the chain and possesses the qualities I mentioned earlier—the ideal hamburger vessel. The patty has the char that makes it taste like it came from a backyard Weber grill. And the toppings could be a good side salad on its own. I’ve waxed rhapsodic about these burgers before (see my previous 2009 review for OC Weekly) but lately, I developed an unhealthy addiction to them after I rediscovered their greatness.

During the past few months, this burger was one of the comfort foods that helped me get through some tough times. 

In-N-Out may be the religion here; but me, I count myself squarely in the Cult of TK Burger. And oh, the fries here? Perfect too: always rocket hot and crispy fresh from the fryer, never a soggy spear in the bunch. The perfect accompaniment to a perfect burger.

T K Burger 
(714) 662-2572
2966 Bristol St 
Costa Mesa, CA 92626