Mishari Marafie, whose Kuwait-based chain of fast food restaurants just opened its first U.S. outpost in Los Angeles, attributes his success to thinking small.
Rock House Sliders serves a varied selection of sliders, sides and desserts, all in mini versions, and is a popular meeting place on Sunset Boulevard for nearby Kuwaiti UCLA students to get a taste of home — but you’re not going to find any machboos on this menu.
"Supersize is so yesterday, that's why RHS was born,” Marafie tells L.A. Weekly. Having lived in Miami, New York City and Los Angeles, he noticed a gap in the crowded world of burgers. “So we set out to create the burger joint we wanted.”
The menu is the same as in Kuwait, except for the grilled chicken and super vegan slider.
The Original Rocker is a juicy 2-ounce Angus beef patty with homemade secret sauce, cheddar cheese, crunchy pickles and lettuce. If you add a chipotle BBQ ranch slider with Swiss cheese, frizzled onions, pickles and lettuce to your plate, you are technically eating the equivalent of one burger. And if you can’t decide between beef or chicken, this will help alleviate that stress.
Try teaming the original hand-breaded crispy chicken slider with an order of cheesy tots or the Rockin' Messy Fries, a responsibly sized mound of skin-on fries drizzled with chopped jalapeños, beef bacon bits, cheddar cheese, frizzled onions and secret sauce.
The 7-ounce mini-shakes (vanilla, messy cookie crunch or chocolate peanut butter) are a mom or supermodel’s dream. By the time you’ve walked down and back from the Hollywood foothills, you’ve burned it off. And the portions are perfect for sharing, or for kid’s birthday party, with enticing trays resembling cupcake boxes.
“Understanding the choice between chicken and beef can be a tough one on certain days, so we packed as much flavor as humanly possible into each bite-sized slider,” Marafie says. “This way you enjoy more burger options, with less of the tough decision-making angst. Plus, we wanted our burger experience to be super social.”
All ingredients are sourced locally and everything is made in-house, including the sauces and the marinades. They bake their own buns and hand-bread the chicken, potato tots and onion rings at each location. Two more locations are on the horizon, in Santa Monica and downtown L.A.
Sliders are all $3.89, while sides range from $2.49 to $4.80 for the buffalo maple chicken strips.
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“We take our menu of burgers, shakes and fries seriously,” Marafie says, “but never life itself. Who’s got time for that anyway?”
Rock House Sliders, 7950 W. Sunset Blvd., Hollywood; (323) 952-6016, rockhousesliders.com.