The Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel's new restaurant, 25 Degrees , is so much hotter than its name implies. The hotel may house the oh-so-trendy Teddy's and pricey steakhouse Dakota, but 25 Degrees offers something for everyone, and you do not have to crane your neck behind a velvet rope to find out.
The room is dark. Really dark. Low lighting streams from gothic glass chandeliers, and music ranging from Lenny Kravitz to Snoop Dogg electrifies the room. Choose a seat at an enormous red banquet (they make for some sexy snuggling) or the long mahogany bar.
It would seem that L.A.'s market for designers is completely saturated, but not here. At 25 Degrees you get to design your very own burger. First choose the meat: ground sirloin, turkey burger or hot dog Chicago style. Veggie options are lettuce, onion, tomato and pickles.
The cheese. Oh the cheese. The restaurant offers more than 10 gourmet choices with a description to compliment your meat choice. Craving a woody, robust punch from the Swiss Alps? Emmi, Gruyere is the one for you. Or how about a creamy goat cheese with a long finish? Benedictine all the way. Grassy and tart? The Crescenza gets the job done. American and cheddar, eat your hearts out.
Spend another buck for the “extras” like bacon, avocado, chopped onion, sauerkraut, arugula or a fried egg. Build an even higher burger with garlic aioli, horseradish cream, lemon dill or BBQ sauce. 50 cents well spent.
Or if exams have utterly sapped your calculating abilities, let 25 Degrees build your burger for you. The “Our Burgers” ($12) section has three patties that are calling your name.
Juicy sirloin jeweled with caramelized onions and topped with Big Woods Blue Cheese, crispy bacon and arugula explodes with flavor. The Straus Family Jack Cheese kicks the turkey burger with green chili chipotle sauce up about 25 notches. Guacamole makes it that much better. Roasted tomatoes, prosciutto, Burrata Cheese and olive tapenade makes it all worth it. Each bursting burger is simply served on a mod white plate, making this Los Angeles' greatest presentation of America's favorite food.
For dessert, skip the chocolate pudding (unless you just can't get enough Jell-O) and try the mascarpone cheesecake topped with vanilla poached strawberries. Lemon meringue pie makes your mouth pucker, while simultaneously eliciting sounds of glee.
Go old school with a chocolate, strawberry, or vanilla milkshake, or indulge and in one of the 40-plus bottles of wine.
In the near future, someone very well might think that a “design-your-own-chicken-nugget” restaurant would be the next best thing. For now, Campus Circle is content with the upscale, entertaining spectacle of constructing your very own burger at 25 Degrees. And if you don't agree (impossible!), remember, your free issue is on us.
25 Degrees is located at 7000 Hollywood Blvd., in Hollywood. Hours: Mon-Thu 5 p.m.-1 a.m. Fri-Sat 5 p.m.-3 a.m. Valet parking is available. For more information, call (323) 785-7244 or visit www.25degreesrestaurant.com.