With outposts in Oakland, San Francisco, Miami and New York City, it's easy to forget that Umami Burger is still actually opening locations here in the Southland. After expanding into the old Papoo's Hot Dog Show space in Burbank, the unstoppable Adam Fleischman/SBE/Fortress Investment Group joint venture looks to continue their world-dominating ways with a new Umami Burger Arts District location, open for lunch as of Monday, Sept. 23.
Beyond the classics, Umami Arts District will continue the tradition of offering one signature burger unique to each location. In this case, the East 3rd Street site is really planning on porking up the place, with a retooled version of their already popular Manly Burger. This porcine exploration is not for the faint of artery: The burger features a mixed beef and bacon patty — a la Slater's 50/50 — with crisped pork belly on top, a thick smear of bacon-laced mayonnaise and the signature squishy Umami bun that's been toasted in bacon fat. Oh, and a slice of beer-cheddar cheese.
And if all that weren't enough, beginning on Thursday, Sept. 26, you can get your fingertips — those burgers are small, aren't they? — on The Slash Burger, an odd collaboration with the decades-removed Guns N' Roses guitarist known for his long hair and comical top hat. (Here is a file photo for reference). The rocker's namesake burger will mix braised mushrooms, caramelized onions, avocado, American cheese and wasabi aioli on top of Umami's classic all-beef burger, with a Parmesan crisp spiked through the top — because that's hardcore, right?
As for the space itself, this new Umami offers exactly as much exposed bulb lighting and pale brickwork as you've come to expect from the Arts District, with the added bonus of a small, leafy patio.
There will be eight taps available at the small back bar, offering a rotating selection of local kegs from breweries such as Angel City, Noble Ale Works and The Bruery. Bottled beers, sakes and a few different bottles of wine will also help to wash down all that bacon, if draught beer's not your thing. Just be sure to stave off your meat and alcohol hangover with some Stumptown in the morning.
The new Umami Burger in the Arts District is now officially open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week.
Want more Squid Ink? Follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook. Farley Elliott writes about food, drink and entertainment at OverOverUnder.com.