There's a sweet sadness that comes when one is on the downside of a pleasurable pursuit.
Perhaps you're in the final hour of the blockbuster film you've waited a year to see. Or you're near the end of a novel you adore. Or you find yourself at the close of Pasadena Cheeseburger Week, with no cheeseburger immediately in front of you, ready to be devoured.
We get you, and so do the food-obsessed folks behind Pasadena Restaurant Week, which oversees the ever-popular Pasadena Cheeseburger Week. The Januarytime event, which includes several Crown City eateries, is all about that meaty, gooey, bun-delish foodstuff that was invented in Pasadena back in the mid-1920s.
Deals, specials, and other good things abound, but alas: Cheeseburger Week is only on during the middle of January. But just because it is now over for another year doesn't mean you should sigh: Results of the all-important Pasadena Week Cheeseburger Challenge are in, which means that cheeseburgerists now have a contemporary ratings roster of what's sizzling around the city.
What to do, where to go and what to see
Fans spoke, and here are some of the 2016 picks. The Dog Haus took the top spot in the "Favorite Place for a Cheeseburger" category, followed by Umami Burger and The Counter.
Favorite Gourmet Burger? Slots one, two, and three have been fan-filled by Kings Row Gastropub, La Grande Orange Cafe, and Alondra Hot Wings/Del Frisco Grille, respectively (yep, third place was a tasty tie).
And for Favorite Dessert After a Cheeseburger? The beloved Pie 'n Burger napped the top spot, followed by POP Champagne and Dessert Bar and Twohey's.
There are a number of categories to peruse before making for Pasadena for the full cheeseburger experience. For here's a truism all burger buffs can get behind: Just because Cheeseburger Week is over doesn't mean the bun-grabbable good times have ended. There's a patty sizzling somewhere in Pasadena right this instant, and it could have your name on it.
Or, if not your name, which is unlikely, it could be in your happy hands soon. Don't argue with us over whether hands can be happy; when hands hold a well-made cheeseburger, they're smiling.