When you need a break after walking down Hollywood Boulevard, seek refuge in the lobby of the historic Roosevelt Hotel. Floor-to-ceiling curtains, intricately painted ceilings, and a large chandelier make it a chic destination for drinks — but don’t be fooled by the extravagant decorations. Walk a few steps more and you’ve found a hidden gem: 25 Degrees, a surprisingly laid-back burger joint tucked inside a swanky hotel. Who’d have thought?
You and your group slide into a high-back tufted leather booth, look out the window at the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and feel like true VIPs. The only thing more overwhelming than the red-patterned walls is the menu. There are sandwiches, salads, soups, and burgers — but obviously, you want to try the burgers, often named as some of the best in L.A. You can build your own combo, with ground sirloin, turkey, yellowfin tuna, or veggie options, and 14 different choices of cheeses, including creamy Point Reyes Blue or triple-cream Red Hawk. One glance at the list of add-ons has your mouth watering: portobello mushroom, prosciutto, and sauerkraut, just to name a few.
If the dizzying list on the “Craft Your Own” section has you overwhelmed, leave the burger combinations to the experts and go with one of the house options. The Number One, which comes with caramelized onions, tangy Gorgonzola, bacon, arugula, and Thousand Island dressing, will certainly catch your eye. For sides, order up sweet potato fries and onion rings for sharing among your friends, and the truly hungry in your party will definitely want the popular Guinness milkshake. Vanilla ice cream and house-made chocolate sauce are delicious enough on their own, but dunking it all in rich stout beer adds a heady new dimension to your old favorite. Long after you leave this restaurant, the milkshake may be the part of your meal you remember most fondly.
But when your order arrives, you’ll get a burger worthy of even the finest shake and fries. You get a thick beef patty sitting between a perfectly puffed brioche bun, and the contents of it all is spilling out of its paper wrap. The deliciously charred flavor of the grill mixes well with the bite of funky Gorgonzola, and the juiciness of the burger tells you the chef has cooked the beef perfectly. (25 Degrees has their burgers down to a science; the restaurant’s name refers to the temperature difference between a raw and well-done burger.)
Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, you find out 25 Degrees is open 24 hours — perfect for late-night hunger pangs. For a day trip, arrive between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. for complimentary valet parking with validation. Yep, you’ve just found your new favorite burger joint.