Column: ‘Mad Men’ cooks up a Burger Chef scene in the 909


Friday’s column resurrects a bit of hamburger history (the best kind of history?) to talk about Burger Chef, which reappeared courtesy of the 909 in an episode of “Mad Men.” After that is an item about my vacation in St. Louis (the St. Tropez of the Midwest?) and a few Culture Corner briefs.

Above is Burger Chef as it appeared on “Mad Men,” from the site IndieWire; below is a vintage Burger Chef, location unknown, from the French Fry Diary blog.


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  • Derek

    In the late 1960’s / early 1970’s, I can vaguely remember riding with my father past the Rialto BURGER CHEF (Foothill Boulevard, where the Mad Men episode was filmed). Alas, I never had the opportunity to sample their food.

  • John Plessel

    The only other Inland Empire Burger Chef I remember was on Highland Avenue in San Bernardino, between Sterling and Del Rosa avenues.

    It closed in the early ’70s and did a pretty decent business when it was resurrected in the ’80s as Angelo’s Drive-In.

    It was eventually razed to make way for a self-storage place.

    Ah, progress!

  • JMac

    John, as long as you consider Pomona as part of the IE, there was a Burger Chef on the corner of Garey and Artesia well into the 70’s. It then became another Taylor Maid donut shop and eventually morphed into what it is today, a Chinese-fried chicken-donut shop.

    • davidallen909

      I’ve been told, too, that what’s now Samo’s Burgers on South Garey in Pomona used to be a Burger Chef. There may have been more Burger Chefs — it’s hard to believe Ontario didn’t have one.

  • Eddie F Stevens

    Burger Chef was as good as it gets, you could order your burgers plain then proceed to the awesome salad bar and “decorate” it just the way you wanted, the burgers had a great smokey flavor, delicious !