What to Know
Various Pasadena restaurants
Jan. 6-11, 2019
The Cheeseburger Challenge opens on Jan. 6
Food is magic, it is often said, but we still haven't invented a magical portal that allows us to eat at restaurants on the other side of the planet, with a moment's notice, nor can we journey back through the decades to early eateries that have now become legendary.
Good thing that we won't need an insta-portal to globetrot our way to Pasadena, but we will need a time-travel door if we want to return to the Rite Spot, circa 1924, which served fast but hearty fare to the residents of the Crown City.
It is said that Lionel Sternberger, the son of the Rite Spot's owner, created the cheeseburger, right there, on Colorado Boulevard, in that very year, and the rest, as they say, is cheddar-topped, mozzarella-melted history.
How, though, to best honor this fabled moment, now that we're around 95 years in the future?
By taking part in Cheeseburger Week, of course.
That's right: This particular Restaurant Week is fully devoted to all things cheeseburgerian, and Pasadena restaurants truly embrace the theme with relish (and mustard and ketchup and carmelized onions, oh yeah).
Several local burger-mastering spots will participate during the Jan. 6-11 event, with a few offering "specially created burgers" during Cheeseburger Week, including Dog Haus and El Portal.
And at Pie 'n Burger, one of the most historic burger joints in all of Pasland? You'll want to stop by. "Special deals" will flourish at a number of Pasadena spots, including, yep, the ol' P'nB.
Finally, don't miss the Cheeseburger Challenge, which gives you the chance to sound off on your favorites.
Might you win a "cheeseburger meal" at one of the area restaurants? Perhaps. Best study up before the challenge officially opens on Jan. 6.
As for the one essential outing that isn't related to sinking your chompers into a bun, but rather paying tribute to the memory of the cheeseburger's inventor?
There's a plaque at W. 1520 Colorado Boulevard, in honor of Mr. Sternberger and his memorable and meaty contribution to popular cuisine.
So take snaps of your meals, of course, but don't forget to snap the spot where it all started, next to the location where the Rite Spot, the first home of cheeseburgerdom, once stood.