Umami Burger: Where To Go For Great Burgers In Southern California

Umami Burger - Los Angeles Restaurants | rtwgirl

Love burgers and LA bound? Head to Umami Burger!

It’s been crazy hot in Los Angeles for the past few weeks and I’ve been hiding out in an air-conditioned room not wanting to melt. The other day I had to head over to Pasadena to meet a friend and after we separated, I was hungry. There are a lot of options in Old Pasadena on Colorado Street but I knew exactly what I wanted. I had to try out an Umami Burger once again.

My cousin had posted on Facebook that he hated In N Out Burger and Umami Burger was better. You may have heard about In N Out. It’s a famous fast food burger chain in certain states like California, Texas, Utah, Colorado, Nevada, and Arizona. I think people clamor over them because unless you’re in those states, you can’t get them. They are cheap and tasty. They even have a secret menu.

Umami Burger is a small chain with a handful of locations based in California, New York, Chicago, Las Vegas, and Japan. It was created by a fellow by the name of Adam Fleischman, who was previously in the wine business and is a self-taught chef. The menu is based on the 5th taste (the other 4 being sweet, salty, sour, and bitter), umami, which is a borrowed Japanese word which translates to “pleasant savory taste”.

I went to Umami Burger when it first opened in 2009. There was a lot of hype around the opening. I went with one of my best friends and we walked out of there wondering what the deal was. Fast forward to 2013 and I still had a low opinion of the place. But after hearing my cousin rave about his burger, I had to try it again. I still believe that you can’t compare a fast food burger that comes in a combo for less than $6 to a burger restaurant where the burger alone is minimum $10.

I went, I sat, and I ordered the Original Umami burger and a Mexican Coke. I didn’t order fries or sides to fill me up. I just wanted to focus on the meat. The burger comes with a parmesan crisp, shiitake mushroom, roasted tomato, caramelized onion, and house ketchup. The menu has grown since the now-defunct La Brea location that I went to in 2009. They have quite a selection of salads, sides, meat burgers, un-meat burgers, beer, wine, and sodas.

My verdict?? The burger was good and it had improved a lot since I first went in 2009.

Here’s a better look at my Umami Burger: 

Umami Burger

The Original


I like my meat cooked medium rare


The Pasadena location

I have been back to Umami several times over the years and recently at their location in Orange County (Costa Mesa). I went with my cousins and their children (family friend!) and we all enjoyed our burgers!

Umami Burger |


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