Restaurant of the Week: Sammy’s Burger

This week’s restaurant is Sammy’s Burger (note lack of plural), 765 W. Holt Blvd. (at San Antonio), Ontario.

Sammy’s is a stone’s throw from Grinder Haven, which is an occasional stop for me, but I’d never tried Sammy’s. It’s in a long, narrow building on a long, narrow lot, fronted by an old-school sign reading “Burgers” (the top appears to have been removed) that is almost hidden by neighboring signs. Blink and you miss the place.

According to research by the Ontario Library’s Joanne Boyajian, 765 W. Holt, previously a home, in 1969 was reborn as Burger Lane Drive-In with “drive thru service and inside seating,” to quote the phone book. It was also the Burger Lane main office, with a second location at 1715 W. Holt in Pomona. By 1975, the name was Jerry’s Burgers; in 1980, it was A ‘n N Burgers; in 1990, it became Sammy’s, its name for the past 18 years.

It’s seen better days, but Sammy’s was moderately busy when I went in for lunch Friday. They have the usual array of burgers, a dozen hot sandwiches, plus burritos, teriyaki and basic breakfasts. I got the hamburger, fries and soda special, which was $4.09 with tax. My food was cooked fresh and delivered after five or 10 minutes.

The fries were crisp and better than average; I finished them, which is rare for me. The burger came on a soft bun with Thousand Island, lettuce, tomato, pickles and chopped onions. Tasty and filling.

The takeout menu brags “Best Burger in Town.” It’s a respectable hamburger and certainly a contender for the best in Ontario. A blog reader says Sammy’s has a good pastrami burger. The menu’s most expensive hamburger is the $4.25 Sammy Burger. I don’t know what it is, but it must be big, since it’s pricier than the double cheeseburger.

Sammy’s is Korean-owned and the back of the menu charmingly explains how to introduce yourself in Korean or speak several “useful expressions.” I’ll have to practice before I try “How are you doing?”: “Eo-Tteo-K’e-Ji-Nae-Sae-Yo?”

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