Before Powerhouse 2009 (which was uh-may-zing), Corde and I thought it would be best to fill up on some grub before hitting the Honda Center. We didn't wanna miss any acts because our stomachs were singing hungry tunes! Before our drive to Anaheim, we hit up Umami Burger on La Brea - a burger hut dedicated to the concept of the "Fifth Taste", or Umami. What exactly is Umami? I haven't quite figured it out myself but I am reading more about it so I can point my finger on exactly what that taste is. I dunno, they say it isn't MSG so... Anyways, check out the "Huh?" link on the resto's website; they direct you to the Umami Information Center which explains and goes through the science, discovery, culture and experience of Umami.
This small cafe is on the corner of S. La Brea, simply decorated with a nice balance of glass and wood and lighted with Asian lantern fixtures. The counter at the front is misleading, I thought we had to order ourselves... But no, the waiter came to our table, took our drink order and returned with two menus. I opted for the Manly Burger (without the bacon lardons, that was a little too manly for me) and Corde got the self-titled Umami Burger. We also shared a side of triple-cooked fries. It's pretty exciting to see what chefs do with the burger concept to make it their own claim to fame. Let's face it, a burger is an all-American classic that has taken on many different stylings; there are lots of self-proclaimed "the best burger" burgers out there. To each their own, right? Melted cheddar cheese is my favorite on burgers, which is why I picked the Manly burger in the first place. My burger had a bit of an Asian bite to it, maybe it was because of the secret Umami ingredient. Also, the bun was sweet and it reminded me of breads sold in Asian bakeries. I'll definitely go back again and try a different burger to see if has that same Umami kick to it!