Tag Archives: burbank bar

Forman’s Tavern Opens With Excellent Food, Chill Vibe

Since Forman’s Tavern opened in Toluca Lake about six weeks ago, the public house has settled into the neighborhood quite nicely with consistently excellent food, a comfortable vibe and decor, along with friendly, expert bartenders. A breath of fresh air for Toluca Lake and Burbank!

Serving the same, large menu at lunch and dinner, the offerings range from small plates to heartier entrees, burgers, sandwiches and salads. Forman’s serves up a nice menu of beers, IPAs and wines, along with colorful, creative cocktails.

Forman's Tavern Crispy Chicken Sandwich. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Forman’s Tavern Crispy Chicken Sandwich. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

We have stopped by Forman’s Tavern several times in the past few weeks, late at night and for lunch. Every visit has been pleasant, from bar atmosphere to the quality of the food and drink.

At night, a bouncer checks i.d.s and the place is busy inside. We still were able to find a seat at the large community table in the center. The tavern is dark, punctuated with atmospheric lighting. Fortunately, the place isn’t overly loud, like many bars can be.

During the day, Forman’s does a steady business for lunch yet finding a nice table at which to sit is pretty easy. The pub is light, bright and expansive.

Forman's amazing Brussels Sprouts. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Forman’s amazing Brussels Sprouts. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

At Forman’s, we’ve had one of the best burgers we’ve tasted anywhere in the United States, the Steakhouse Burger. At $14, the diner gets their money’s worth. Ground fresh daily, the meat is perfectly cooked to order.

A medium burger melts in the mouth, with an incredible flavor. Topped with braised mushrooms, Gruyere cheese and crispy shallots and placed inside a potato bun, Forman’s Steakhouse Burger is simply perfect.

Hand cut fries are available separately, and are expertly crispy, potato-y and a little picante. Forman’s Brussels Sprouts ($7) are a thing of beauty – crispy and chewy with a hint of citrus, heat and nutty, salty cheese.

Forman's Steakhouse Burger with fresh cut fries. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Forman’s Steakhouse Burger with fresh cut fries. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The Crispy Chicken Sandwich ($13) is slightly spicy and juicy. A fried chicken breast is topped with Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, pickles and a tangy sweet honey mustard dressing on a potato bun.

And then there’s Forman’s salad menu, which looks fantastic, from Kale Salad, Citrus & Beet Salad, Quinoa & Berry Salad and Farro Salad to Fried Chicken Salad, Ahi Tuna Salad and Grilled Steak Salad.

Forman's Farro Salad. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Forman’s Farro Salad. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The Farro Salad ($14), made with nutty farro, house-smoked turkey, tender butternut squash, cranberries, green onions, lemon and olive oil, is tangy, slightly sweet, filling and absolutely perfect.

Another spectacular dish is the Lemon & Ale Mussels. If we had one critique, it would be to request more grilled bread to accompany the dish, with which to soak up the fragrant, lemony, sea-flavored broth. For $15, the plate is a huge stack of mussels steamed with Belgian ale, lemon and parsley. Five slices of sliced, grilled bread are served alongside.

Lemon & Ale Mussels at Forman's Tavern. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Lemon & Ale Mussels at Forman’s Tavern. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

We also tried the Spicy Bacon Caramel Popcorn ($6.) The combination of flavors worked really well, although perhaps a little more bacon could have been present. The sweetness of the shared plate worked well as a dessert.

Forman’s bartenders make excellent cocktails. The Old Fashioned is served over a single huge cube of ice and garnished with a lemon twist – strong and classic. The Rosemary Paloma is tangy and fresh. Most cocktails range in price from $10-12.

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Forman’s wine and beer list is solid as well. We’ve tried several varieties on tap, including the Dog Fishhead 90 IPA, Old Chubb Nitro, Big Whig IPA and the Lagunitas Pils. Prices range from $7-9 a glass.

At Forman’s Tavern, no detail is forgotten. The bathrooms are clean and charmingly decorated. The main room is large and open, with lots of hunting lodge and country-inspired accoutrements.

Eating at Forman’s is a visceral, slightly messy experience. Be prepared for some sticky fingers!

Patrons find their own seats and order food and drinks at the bar. Runners bring the plates out from the kitchen to the tables.

Forman’s Tavern is on Riverside Drive in Toluca Lake, so be prepared to valet or park and walk.

For consistency, style and substance, Forman’s Tavern gets a resounding Tops In Town. We are thrilled to find an excellent casual place for late-night dinners and drinks, close to Burbank, with a little more sophistication than the usual suspects.

Restaurant Info: Forman’s Tavern is located at 10149 Riverside Dr., Toluca Lake, CA, 91602. 818-760-6900. Forman’s Tavern is open Monday through Sunday 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.

Forman’s Tavern receives: Tops In Town

myBurbank Ratings:
Tops In Town (Outstanding)
On The Marquee (Really Good)
Could Use A Rewrite (Average or Slightly Below)
Don’t Quit Your Day Job (Poor)

 

New Restaurant/Bar The Hangar Grille Opens In Burbank

Since their soft open on August 6, The Hangar Grille has drawn a steady stream of Burbankers ready to try the new restaurant and bar. Located in the Magnolia Park district, the spot combines tasty eats with comfortable ambiance.

According to the sign outside the restaurant, The Hangar Grille is dedicated “to the city of Burbank and the employees of Lockheed that dedicated their skill and pride in building the best flying machines during Lockheed’s Burbank history.”

The Hangar Grille opened August 6 on Magnolia Boulevard in Burbank. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The Hangar Grille opened August 6 on Magnolia Boulevard in Burbank. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The aeronautic theme makes for a nice vibe inside, with fans, photos and decorative accents, including an open ceiling with exposed piping. Several television screens dot the upper walls. However, the television sound is low so the restaurant is not noisy, but rather an enjoyable place for a conversation.

We stopped by a few days after The Hangar Grille opened, and were charmed by the friendliness of the staff. While we ordered some appetizers and pastas for dinner, the lunch and dinner menus include a host of creative apps, soups, salads, sandwiches and burgers, steaks, BBQ and ribs. For now, the bar offers wine and beer only.

The Hangar Grille's Snapper Ceviche: plantain chips accompany high quality fish seasoned with tangy lime and chopped vegetables. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The Hangar Grille’s Snapper Ceviche: plantain chips accompany high quality fish seasoned with tangy lime and chopped vegetables. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

One of our favorites was the Snapper Ceviche, made from a high quality cut of fish. Accompanied by plantain chips instead of the usual tostada, the appetizer was tangy and fresh. The ceviche included pieces of jicama, red pepper, jalepeno and cucumber and was very refreshing.

We also enjoyed the Crab Stuffed Mushrooms. The plate included eight mushrooms filled with breaded crab mix and topped with parmesan cheese. Dipped in the restaurant’s special red pepper aioli sauce, the mushrooms were a hit with the whole family.

The Hangar Grille's Crab Stuffed Mushrooms. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The Hangar Grille’s Crab Stuffed Mushrooms. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Of the four pasta dishes we ordered, our favorite was the Gemelli & Chicken. Chicken, sun dried tomatoes and mushrooms were sauteed in a light cream sauce with Gemelli pasta. The dish has some Cajun seasoning for a bit of a kick.

In fact, many of the plates we tried had a bit of a kick, incorporating a liberal use of spice and heat. Several of the pasta dishes used cream in the base sauce, making for a heartier, richer plate of pasta.

We enjoyed the Penne Vegetali, with roasted vegetables in a spicy marinara sauce and tossed with penne pasta and cheese. The dish reminded us of ratatouille. The Seafood Linguini was tasty too, very flavorful in a cream sauce.

Gemelli & Chicken at The Hangar Grille. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Gemelli & Chicken at The Hangar Grille. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The Penne With Lobster Claws was another favorite dish, combining spinach, tomatoes and penne sauteed with The Hangar Grille’s signature and spicy Santa Fe Cream sauce, and topped with lobster meat and chopped cilantro.

We enjoyed our meal at The Hangar Grille and look forward to returning to try some of the amazing-sounding salads, sandwiches and appetizers. Magnolia Park’s newest eatery, The Hangar Grille, is On The Marquee. With later hours, open until 11:00 p.m., Burbank finally has another option for those of us who eat dinner on the later side or want to go out for a casual drink in the neighborhood.

Restaurant Info: The Hangar Grille is located at 3821 W. Magnolia Boulevard, Burbank, CA, 91501. 818-842-5250. The Hangar Grille is open Monday through Sunday, 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

The Hangar Grille receives: On The Marquee

myBurbank Ratings:
Tops In Town (Outstanding)
On The Marquee (Really Good)
Could Use A Rewrite (Average or Slightly Below)
Don’t Quit Your Day Job (Poor)