Hopdoddy, curious name curiously great cheeseburgers:
The Point is another novel addition to the El Segundo “gentrification” from small-town bedroom community (sandwiched between LAX and the rest of the affluent, beachy South Bay) and an urban, corporate epicenter catering to Silicon Valley-esque companies and its younger proponents who work there. The mall itself is of the anti-mall ilk complete with grassy areas to lay out on your beach towel while staring up at another in the countless iterations of Mendocino Farms instead of well you know tranquil waves and a bountiful sky. (Mendocino joins a coterie of primarily restaurants/eateries from North Italia to ShopHouse to another Peet’s Coffee and a third in the collection of Superbas, or is it a fourth ?).
Hopdoddy is also part and parcel of a chain, but by way of Texas, beef country central. It’s full name: Hopdoddy Burger Bar. A burger bar usually conjures images of cruddy burgers too cute by half, twee fries, and saccharinely sweet milkshakes.
However, if you’re already there you might as well give it a chance since it’s not a local chain. A Texas import might just be interesting.
You order the classic burger since the menu touts its beef as being black angus beef that’s house ground daily. A classic comprises lettuce, tomato, Tillamook cheddar cheese, caramelized onions, and avocado on buttered egg bun.
The burger that arrives is quite diminutive, verging on the dainty, reminiscent of a baby burger from Fatburger. But then slice the burger in half which begins to drip juice with sheer abandon. You bite into the burger and the beefy goodness just can’t cease to build up. For lack of a better word, this is one tasty, tasty burger. The cheddar cheese adds an extra layer of richness and saltiness to round out the beefy intensity. The avocado cuts the richness does to manageable style even though avocados usually are quite rich on their own. And the caramelized onions just hint at a decided sweetness in a contrapuntal interplay with the savory burger and is cooked a point (though how ironic considered the eponymous The Point as the moniker of this post-post-post modern mall for a decidedly pre-dystopian society).
You take another bite. You are happy. Content. Cordial. A fleeting moment, in a pastoral reverie, were all might just be right with the world.
There is a circular bar where myriad of local, craft beers are served on tap in schooners (yes, ice cold, frosty mouthed schooners), which is ultimately my favorite way to quaff a beer, or five. You might just be delirious by now.
And this is thanks to a Texas chain of a fucking “burger bar”.