Restaurant of the Week: Fatburger, RC

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Fatburger, 11226 4th St. (at Milliken), Rancho Cucamonga

Yes, Fatburger — in Rancho Cucamonga, across from Ontario Mills — is a chain, but as there’s only one in the Inland Valley, I’ll allow it here.

Besides, Fatburger makes my favorite local hamburger. East down Fourth Street from our newspaper, Faburger is a convenient spot, and there’s an attention to quality and freshness that puts it up there with In N Out. Fatburger’s signature item is fat, juicy and cooked to order, and loaded with shredded lettuce.

The skinny fries are pleasantly crispy, the onion rings lightly battered. The shakes are a little disappointing, they stopped carrying Cherry Coke in the dispenser and the “fat” fries are mushy for my taste, although friends like them. Fatburger also sells quite good chicken sandwiches and turkey burgers. You can even get a bacon and fried egg sandwich, which I tried once and liked.

The seating is comfortable, moreso than In N Out’s, with actual tables and chairs, plus booths. There’s a nice vibe to the place. One day my food was brought to my table by an employee wearing silk pants, like he was stopping off before hitting the clubs. The jukebox plays great R&B, rock and soul classics. Friday I heard Sly and the Family Stone, the Coasters, the Spinners and Janis Joplin.

This may reflect the clientele. This Fatburger, at least, is popular with the black community. Sometimes half the diners, as well as a majority of the employees, are black. The place opened in October 2005 and feels like it’s made a niche for itself.

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