Portland >Food & Dining > Stanich's West
5627 SW Kelly Ave, Portland, OR | Directions 9723945.482797 -122.676119
Neighborhoods: Southwest Neighborhoods Incorporated, Corbet - Terwilliger - Lair Hill
Walked in, walked out – I'd been to Stanich's once before, and despite the lousy (perhaps remotely charming) "sports pendant" environment, I had a very good burger. A year or so later, I convinced a friend to go there with me. There were two other couples who walked in at the same time. First there was nobody to seat us - eventually someone sitting eating at the bar instructed us to go sit at a dirty table as she spat out the burger she was gobbling down on. The other guests just sat themselves. Eventually some trollish woman with a huge hairy mole the size of Manhattan on her face comes out of the back and is on her cell phone serving soda to some guy who had to come up to the counter for a refill of RC cola. I couldn't tell for sure, but it sounded like she was talking disrespectfully about some kid who was cooking, that he wasn't keeping up - but before us and the others arrived there were only two other tables seated in this dump. Funny thing is she seemed like the big hold up. Five minutes after seeing the she-troll with her dirty cell phone perched under her neck fat we decided it would be best to leave the dirty table and walk out of the restaurant. This is something I wouldn't normally do, but I don't think Stanich's is on my list of recommended culinary establishments anymore.
Its true! – Be thankful for ONE napkin! Dont ask for a straw for your RC drink....he refuses to buy them The employees are the ones to thank if your'e lucky enough to get one, as they buy them themselves ! The late Mr & Mrs Stanich must be rolling in their graves. Fyi-if Steve actually gets out of his chair where he is watching the restaurant security cam from home~plug your ears. He is only there to yell & scream at his employees.
Not for the weak of artery – After reading the reviews on here (both good and bad), I had to check this place out to make a determination for myself, it being only a couple blocks from the house. I decided to get an order to go, the "special" and a side of fries. As i walked home, the smell eminating from the bag was heavenly. Grease began to soak through the paper and i had to grip the bag from the bottom to keep my food from tumbling out. The special was delicious, a carefully prepared monster with toppings galore, egg, bacon, ham, cheese, special sauce, along with your standard lettuce tomato and onion. The fries were large, hand-cut?, pieces of fried goodness. They were hot, crispy, and cooked to perfection. The service was friendly when i went to pick up my order. And it came with a generous helping of napkins and ketchup packets for my fries. This place was great and fairly cheap. My only suggestion is that you choose wisely when you go. After taking on the special and fries I had to take a nap and was fairly useless for the rest of the day. It is quite a meal. I will definitely be back to stanichs, as soon as my heart recovers from this trip.
Great Joint – I love Stanich's! I grew up going to the NE one, but now frequent the west-side location more. The burgers are tasty! I don't know what people are talking about with this napkin thing. The only thing that I would say about the service is that it is mostly quite slow. True, the place is often under-staffed, but also the college gals whom i mostly see working there just don't seem to care. The other servers I've had are more prompt & at least acknowledge you, and spend less time spacing out at the counter or chatting up the cook. I think it's worth trip every time, even with sloppy service.
Hell hole – The one napkin thing is true. I worked their very briefly. Steve Stanich is, well, not the nicest guy. They serve R/C cola (not Pepsi or Coke). He would yell at his employees if they gave more than 1 napkin. If we put a straw in the soda, that was another sin. There's a Denny's like phrase that the staff has to say "we certainly hope you enjoyed it". I often wondered if there was "flare" involved in the uniform. There's no computer there, again, because Steve is too cheap. The long wait is because (in both locations), there is only room on the grill for 12 burgers. You are served in the order that you arrive. If there's 12 burgers ahead of you, you are waiting for a spot to clear up. Often the one server there gets his/her butt kicked during a lunch rush. You couldn't pay me to eat there.
Pretty good – We were greeted right away and our order came in a reasonable time. I intentionally ordered the burger with everything so I could get the authentic experience, but if I ever go back, I'll order it without the sauce, which was okay but overwhelming. I thought the fries were okay--they seemed to have been made from fresh potatoes--but the ketchup tasted off. Also, apparently they put the pickle slices under the fries, for some reason. Despite what someone said about them not providing more than one napkin, we got several and didn't need to ask for more.
Greater Than The Sum Of Its Parts – Okay, so I've been around awhile. The first Stanich burger I ever had was at the Ten 'til One on Fremont. The dynamic duo in the next booth I recognized as Richard Klinger and Neil Goldschmidt, animatedly discussing their groupies, no doubt. But once my Hamburger arrived, I paid them no heed. That and my pitcher of beer were all my lame consciousness could absorb at one time. I was struck by the soft warmth of the sesame seed coated bun. It's floppy relationship to a three inch pile of ingredients and at first bite, the seamless character of the overall experience. This is a hamburger! I remarked to my wife, who looked on suspiciously over her cheeseburger with mayonnaise and dill pickle. I can't count the number of Stanich Ten 'til One's and Specials (the west side location's moniker) I've had since, far more Specials due to the path of least resistance. When one orders four to go they will sometimes come in a ten pound ground beef box, whose height is just right to exert a slight steadying pressure on the top bun for safe transport. What a thrill it is to enter one's humble abode with a simple box laden with this ale-drenched city's finest Hamburger! Also, since Stanich's lies on a convenient escape route from downtown, we would often stop for a to-go order, sometimes just before the grill shuts down at 11. After a couple of disappointing sessions with an oven warmed Special, we devised a plan that works quite well, if attention is paid to simple things like temp and wrapping. For my "Stanich After Hours", one orders the thing with the lettuce, tomato, onion, sauce and pickle in a separate clamshell container. Upon arriving home, the chill ingredients go into the fridge, and the warm upside down into a sheet of foil, loosely closed at the top. Set oven temp to 170 and relax and pour yourself a congratulatory Salmon Nation Ale, for you're holding at bay one of the city's great achievements: A Hamburger Greater than the Sum of its Parts.
Folks come from near and far to get their burger fix here. – In Short
This little eatery's dining area features booths and Formica tables that have been well-worn by loyal patrons along with wood-paneled walls plastered with sports banners. The reason everybody keeps coming back is "The World's Greatest Hamburger." It comes piled with cheese, ham, bacon, fried egg, tomato, lettuce, pickles and onions. Last of all is the sweet sauce made from mustard, mayo and relish. Fries are thick, hand-cut and fried golden.
Bring your own napkins!!! – BRING YOUR OWN NAPKINS. The burgers are legendary, I've enjoyed them for over 30 years, at the other location primarily, and keep coming back although they're not as good as in the past. Fries are not great, not crispy. Good for beer drinking guys, but details are overlooked for women customers, menus are filthy (after ordering you need to wash your hands) and where oh where are the napkins for their juicy burgers??? The secret has finally been revealed by a disgruntled former employee -- no, it's not a joke to try to eat that delicious juicy burger with only 2 of the tiniest, thinnest napkins made, it's because the owner thinks at the end of the year another few napkins will cut into his profit! So what happens when you ask for more napkins??? You get 1. That's it, 1, until you ask for more, then you get another 1.
Stanich's, get with it and let your customers have their own napkin container on the counter. Puhleeeez! Don't be so cheap and spoil the experience of a great burger joint!
Strange Combination – The restaurant wasn't busy at all, yet somehow it took literally 15 minutes until we were noticed, another 10 to place the order because "there were folks ahead of us".. I've seen waitresses deal with 2 parties fairly effectively over the years. Once the food came out, it seemed like it was all worth it as the burger was indeed legendary. We waited so long to get our bill that we just added it up ourselves and left money on the table. What's the deal? I like how there's a warning when you come in the door like it somehow excuses shoddy service. I have no trouble waiting on food, but waiting just to get an order in and waiting a ridiculous amount of time just for the bill is pure insanity. Lord help you if you try to put this in during a lunch break.
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