Keith and I were in Los Angeles for the weekend and immediately went searching for a quick lunch after we checked in to our hotel. In nearby El Segundo was an upscale strip mall area with a bunch of boutique shops and a few restaurants. We walked into The Counter even though I was not in the mood for a burger. We sat at a high top table and were greeted warmly and quickly given a run down of the ordering system. Basically, you fill out your paper sheet checking off each item you want to "build" your burger or salad. This is where things can get wild! I ended up picking grilled chicken as my main protein adding on Tillamook Cheddar cheese on a bed of mixed greens with tomatoes, cucumbers, carrot shreds, cranberries, and a sun-dried tomato vinaigrette. The chicken was amazing - juicy and flavorful. And the sun-dried tomato dressing added a different dimension to the salad. I devoured the whole thing.
Keith ordered a beef burger topped it with bacon, horseradish cheddar, lettuce, tomato, pickles, grilled onions and chipotle aioli on a Portuguese bun. He went a little crazy too with the spicy cheese and spicy sauce. Unfortunately, his burger was well done even though the server specifically asked him what temperature he wanted (medium rare) and even confirmed the "warm red center" description. We also ordered a side of French Fries that were skinny shoestring shaped and seasoned with salt and paprika. The fries were very tasty but arrived well before our salad and burger. So we basically ate them all before they got too cold. Overall, despite the odd timing of service and over cooked burger, we had a great fresh lunch that satisfied us from a long morning of travel. There are many locations of The Counter with 23 in California and more scattered across the country, with one closer to home in Reston, VA.
Total Rating: 4
Food: 4, Price: 4, Service: 4, Ambience: 4, Accessibility: 4
What I ate:
grilled chicken with Tillamook Cheddar on bed of mixed greens with
tomatoes, cucumbers, carrot shreds, and cranberries
with sun-dried tomato vinaigrette
with bacon, horseradish cheddar, lettuce, tomato, pickles,
grilled onions and chipotle aioli on a Portuguese bun