We can't speak for San Diego or Pasadena, but the bar at Slater's 50/50 in Lake Forest is loooooooong. Like slide a pint across the countertop, Coyote Ugly dancing long. And full of male bartenders (not that we minded). Rodrigo, Bean and Tony can recommend what's on tap anytime. Our task: remember what diners enjoy about the brand that is now five locations strong.
A stand alone building in what used to be a Hooters, before that it was The Library Gentlemens Club. Now, if those two establishments couldn't survive, what makes a burger parlor think they can? Their loyal fan base, for starters. Anybody who has watched enough Travel Channel, or traveled along the 91 to the original space in Anaheim Hills will attest for the bacon-licious concept.
As much as we covet the breakfast meat, the occasional meal with an out-of-towner is enough for us. Unless we're talking their 30 beers on tap– then anytime is fine. While known for their vampire dip, we checked out the beer cheese fries below. Slathered with house chili and beer cheese sauce, it's finished with jalapenos and pepper jack cheese. Almost too modest a portion in our opinion, it allowed belly room for our burgers.
In addition to our standard 50/50 meal, we shared their "World's Greatest" turkey burger. A welcome departure from our award winning peanut butter & jellousy favorite, this charred patty included Gouda, creamy pesto and a portobello cap. Surprisingly refreshing, if that's even possible for a burger. We suppose anything is light when compared to a 50/50 or PB & J.
Dessert included a bite of their homemade bread pudding. Served a la mode, it held a blend of bananas and Nutella. We kind of missed the creme anglaise drizzled on most puddings, but the texture was so moist it didn't really matter. We give up!
Slater's 50/50 is located at 24356 Swartz Ave, Lake Forest, (949) 460-9314; www.slaters5050.com.