The concoction of toasted or grilled buns, juicy red tomatoes, freshly cut lettuce, onions, ketchup, mustard and, most importantly, a beef patty, is recognized as the all-American food staple. O!burger accomplishes the savory task in a fresh way: everything they serve is strictly organic and all-natural.
O!burger, a fast food joint in West Hollywood specializes in burgers and American food alike and is one of the few establishments that is part of the green movement, from the dining room to the kitchen.
An organic burger with all-natural features, may sound exclusively like a vegetarian’s (or vegan’s) delight, but the founders’ aim was not discriminative.
With a goal to cater to more than just “a precious few,” co-owners, Andy Soboil and Martha Chang, are introducing organic meals to the public through a fast food service.
Soboil, who once cooked for celebrities like Johnny Carson and other notables, said they wanted to create something “delicious and totally organic for everyone.”
“It is a necessary option (we need to have in fast food),” Soboil said.
The difference between the regular fast food burger place and O!burger lies in the grass-fed beef, which the owners say can be as lean as skinless chicken.
Other items listed on the menu include hot dogs, veggie burgers, salads, sandwiches, fries, shakes and root beer floats, all which are customizable according to one’s dietary rules or preference of flavor.
According to management, the added ingredients (veggies, sauces, etc) that are part of making the meals fully organic and free of preservatives, chemicals, food coloring and generic modifications. Also, the beef is rich in omega-3, CLA (a fatty acid that may be a potent cancer fighter), vitamins and antioxidants. Plus, they say it has fewer calories.
The crowd’s favorite still remains the classic beef burger, said Evelyn Mojica, manager of O!burger.
The classic O!burger is served on wheat buns with Napa cabbage, crisp sweet pickles, fresh tomatoes, grilled onions, a sauce of choice (thousand island, barbeque, chipotle or ranch), and of course, the grass-fed beef patty.
The scent of the burger itself is mouth-watering and once devoured, a second one is a good choice.
Its healthy approach and unique taste has attracted a circle of celebrity fans and regular customers.
Stars like Jessica Alba, Shawn White, Alicia Silverstone, among others have come in, Mojica said.
The relaxed, casual environment and warm customer service gives the clientele of adults, young and old, with kids and without, a place to enjoy their meal. The small patio just outside the front door, is also a great spot for a bite.
Customers like Anupama Agarwal, who was visiting from New York said they enjoyed the taste of the organic burgers.
“It was good,” Agarwal said. “It was the first veggie burger I tasted.”
The fast food eatery has been around since 2008 and has been featured in publications such as L.A. Eater, L.A. Weekly, L.A. Times, KTLA News and many others.
Most recently, the sustainability and green footprint of the restaurant were the reasons why it won the “Current Causes” competition on Current TV on April 18, 2011.
O!burger has plunged itself fully into the green movement.
From their recycled plastic cups to the biodegradable sugar cane utensils, the reclaimed wood on furniture and the orange and lime green lead-free paint on the quaint space’s walls are all part of the founder’s efforts to be an eco-friendly establishment.
The sustainability does not stop there. Recycling plastics and paper is a major part of their waste management. They also use environmental friendly cleaning products.
“I’m very proud of what we do,” Soboil said. “There is a responsibility behind our restaurant (to be green). It is not just money oriented or corporate driven.”
Being totally organic and green has a toll. The burgers are not cheap. They range from $7.99 to $8.99, something that may not be in the price range for some financially stricken college students. The fries ($2.99) and drinks ($1.99-$3.99) are sold separately.
However, having an alternative to the usual fast food place is refreshing. The the meal won’t leave you feeling weighed down, like other restaurant food. The friendly service, which the staff provides, creates a comfortable environment to dine.
When in West Hollywood, trying the organic burger is a must. Your taste buds will definitely appreciate it.
4.5 stars out of 5
8593 Santa Monica Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069