The tag line that I posted on my Facebook photo read “The best turkey burger ever. YES, EVER!”
That description was no exaggeration. Said the server, “It is the most amazing blend of dark meat, white meat, and skin.” Hold up…did he say SKIN? Well, I didn’t actually notice the addition of skin, but there was clearly something unusual going on here. Turkey burgers do not often give me goose bumps of deliciousness, and I was in full goose bump mode. Needless to say, there were no left overs.
The back story to the best turkey burger ever, in brief:
DCPR was flattered and honored to be contacted by Bill Chait to work with his group of talented restaurant entrepreneurs on a very specific project of national press placements. It was an opportunity that rarely arrives for a small, independent public relations firm. We were present for the launch of Chef John Sedlar’s thirtieth anniversary of the groundbreaking Saint Estephe. We celebrated the inclusion of Sotto and Playa in Esquire Magazine’s Best New Restaurants in America. We congratulated Chef Ricardo Zarate, as he was named to Food & Wine Magazine’s Best New Chefs in America. We were thrilled to learn that Chef John Sedlar was named (the first ever Hispanic) Esquire Chef of the Year. And, we mourned the passing of Chef Amy Pressman, the chef/partner of Chait and Nancy Silverton in the highly anticipated Short Order and Short Cake Bakery at the historic Farmer’s Market at The Grove.
There are three threads that link these brilliant restaurateurs: Owner/Connector/Financier Bill Chait, Bartender/Mixologist Julian Cox, and social media/marketing expert Shawna Dawson. Together, these three professionals link an eclectic group of talented chefs and front of house restaurant professionals into what has become the most acclaimed and respected restaurant groups in Los Angeles. Including restaurants Rivera, Playa, Sotto, Picca Peru, the recently opened Short Order, and the soon to arrive Short Cake, one might argue this one of the most successful and critically acclaimed restaurant groups in the United States. Certainly, Los Angeles has never before enjoyed such an amazing group of talented individuals, each carefully curated and assembled into one behemoth of dining excellence!
Sadly, Chef Amy Pressman passed away mere weeks before the opening of Short Order and Short Cake Bakery. When I first arrived, I smiled to see that the burger named in her honor was the turkey burger, as the TB is usually my burger of choice. I was even more thrilled to discover that it was, quite honestly, the best damn turkey burger I have ever enjoyed in my entire life. Paired with a large order of Spud Potatoes, it was the perfect afternoon lunch, as well as one of my favorite new spots for inexpensive, delicious dining in Los Angeles! And, once again, Short Order continues the lineage of hospitality excellence by Mr. Bill Chait & Co – the 3000 years of Latin cuisine at John Sedlar’s acclaimed Rivera, the brilliantly controversial Reflexiones Series at Playa, the uniquely extraordinary Southern Italian offerings of Chefs Pollack and Samson at Sotto… and, of course, the best turkey burger that I’ve ever eaten at Short Order. And all them complimented by the ever-evolving, superior bar programs of Julian Cox. It is, quite simply, extraordinary.
Of course, great restaurants do not happen by accident. There are long, difficult hours of planning, editing and perfecting. The stress level is high, the hours long, and the rewards often low. And yet, Bill Chait continues on the road to success, culling together an impressively brilliant team of food professionals. It is thanks to the talents of these professionals that Los Angeles now enjoys the enviable title of one of the world’s greatest restaurant destination cities. Lucky us!
Our professional commitment with Mr. Chait and his group recently concluded. It is most extraordinary to observe that hard work, honesty, and ethical standards do still count in this world. It does still matter how people are treated, employees and guests. It does still matter that the food is excellent. And delicious. It does still matter that the chef is in the kitchen cooking, rather than hocking reality shows. And, happily, there are still dedicated professionals that continue to strive every single day to make that “restaurant magic” happen. It is our pleasure and our honor to bring the news of their life’s work to you. Lucky us, indeed.
The DCPR dine out series.