Nocturnal Nights in the O.C: The Corner

Thanks to Irvine’s gourmet burger place, The Corner, Orange County residents are never deprived of  enjoyment and food. This eatery allows you to add some customization and variety to your holiday meals.

The Corner is located in East Irvine at the Woodbury Town Center. The gourmet burger restaurant was established on a challenge to change the way people viewed and thought about burgers. It’s core and unique ideal is customer customization of burgers.

With a built-in garage-type door placed in the wall, the custom gourmet burger place is relatively large, capable for seating groups of 20 or more. It also features a sports bar for those who do not want to miss a game.

When I entered the eatery I was immediately greeted by servers and bartenders and was seated me immediately. The burger place played a variety of music but nothing modern or new, mostly focusing on rock and alternative songs.

Since the Corner is a custom-built burger restaurant, customers have options for customization range from the  different buns and cheeses. With seven types of patties, nine types of buns and over 15 toppings, the burger combinations you can create are endless.

“People think all burgers are the same. A patty, a bun, cheese and a few other ingredients you throw in. No one really thinks about what goes in it,” explained the bartender. “When people see the custom burger options for the first time, it usually takes them a good 10 minutes or so to make an order since most of them never knew about the range of ingredients.”

The menu has small clipboard and checklist at the back for custom-built burgers. I spent more time ordering and picking my sides, buns and patties than waiting for the order to arrive. The numerous options for patties, cheeses, sauce, toppings and buns range from organic bison meat, horseradish cheddar, red wine vinaigrette, dried cranberries and gluten-free bun.

Service was relatively quick and efficient. The lack of abundant servers may delay several orders, but a simple wave of the hand gets their attention. However, since most customers create their own burgers, the checklist at the back of the menu is given to the waiters directly to avoid any mistakes. Its a cool alternative to the common behavior of a server taking your order on a notepad.

A burger ranges from $12 to $25. Several customization options may cost as much as $5 or $7, so taking your time is highly encouraged before submitting a checklist to the servers. Some burgers are already created and listed in the menu with a fixed price if you opt to not customize your food.

You can smell the delicious scent of the burgers as they leave the kitchen, leaving you constantly wondering when your order will arrive. I ordered a customized bacon BBQ burger with fries and a shake. The meat melted in my mouth and the scrumptious juices of the burger stuck to my fingertips as I took another bite.

The meat was tasty and considerably hot, ultimately preserving the freshness of the burger.

Since the Corner is located near the Woodbury community, you can expect to see some families and some children. The atmosphere is mostly family oriented, but the eatery has served get-togethers, birthdays and meetings. The servers and bartenders were extremely polite and often engaged in conversation with the customers, creating friendly vibe throughout the space. The ambiance is also relatively peaceful due to its location in a town center close to residential houses, perfect for family get-togethers. Since the gourmet burger eatery is mostly geared towards family dinners and lunches, it closes relatively early at 9 p.m.

If turkey, ham and mashed potatoes feel a bit repetitive, then a burger at the Corner is a great alternative. If you are not going home for the holidays, the Corner is the best place to grab a great holiday burger.