A week of cheeseburger tasting in Pasadena
Eatocracy has the story on Pasadena's cheeseburger challenge after touring the city and tasting a whole lot of cheeseburgers. Although we're jealous that we weren't on that trip, we can still pretend we were there with the help of their recap:
Pasadena, California: birthplace of two iconic figures in food history - Julia Child and the cheeseburger. While various towns lay claim to to the latter, local legend has it that the cheeseburger was invented in the 1920s at the Rite Spot Cafe by 16 year old Lionel Sternberger.
As the story goes, the teenager was working at his Dad’s restaurant when he "accidentally burned a hamburger," says Paul Little, head of the Pasadena Chamber of Commerce.
“Rather than throw it in the trash, he flipped it over, put a piece of cheese on it to hide his mistake and served it to a customer who was delighted to have it," Little claims.
The senior Sternberger put the new “cheese hamburger” on their menu, calling it the "Aristocratic Hamburger." It sold for 15 cents.
Almost 90 years later, the classic sandwich is still thriving. This week, the city of Pasadena is celebrating its culinary accomplishment by taking a whole week to pay homage to their hamburger heritage, and over twenty restaurants are participating in the Cheeseburger Challenge.