Bacon Lovers Rejoice!! You will go crazy over these burgers. The house specialty is 50% Sterling Silver 21 day aged USDA Choice Beef and 50% thick cut Apple Wood Smoked Bacon ground together and cooked like you would cook a burger in your own backyard! On a Saturday night my wife and I went to the Slater’s in Lake Forest, California. It was 5 o’clock and already jammed with a waiting list. We were fortunate to have a reservation. We were greeted at the door by Todd Wagner the assistant manager, who snuck us through the dining room to our table. We could enjoy the aromas of great cooking already permeating the dining room from the open kitchen. “Mmmmm” I thought, “it’s going to be good!” Nothing like the smell of bacon to wake up your appetite. Our server was Alexis, who was a regular at the Huntington Beach 50/50 restaurant. Alexis tells us she liked the food so much, she got a job here. Quite an endorsement, I must say.

The 50-50 Burger

The dinner business was warming up and service is quick, friendly and professional. We started off with some great appetizers. You have got to try the Slater’s Vampire Dip. This hot bubbly cream dip was filled with roasted garlic, cheese & artichokes! The dip is served in a sourdough bread bowl with fried pita chips. Don’t plan on kissing anybody for a while though.

While we were enjoying the Vampire Dip, Bree the “Hospitality Ambassador” stopped by to check on us. I have never heard of a “Hospitality Ambassador” before so I asked Bree “what does a “Hospitality Ambassador” do? “I keep people happy” was her answer. “That’s my job and I love it!” It’s obvious that Bree is very outgoing having served on missions trips to Japan building homes for the tsunami victims. So far we are very happy. Nicole swings by our table and brings a huge plate of sweet crispy fried pickles with house made mustard sauce. A beer sounds great with the fried pickles but I was just curious what the bartender would recommend. Bree, no not the “Hospitality Ambassador Bree” but the “Bartender Bree” suggested a Fever Tree Ginger Beer. Wow!! Great combinations. The clean ginger note was such a nice compliment to the mustard dipped pickles. Try one. My wife gets a “Skinny Gal” Margarita made with 1800 Silver 100% Agave Tequila, Cointreau, fresh pressed lime and agave nectar. She is happy with a capital “H”.

Beer Cheese Fries

Bree the server” – wait a minute. Are you catching on here? That’s three Bree’s so far and yes Slater’s 50/50 has four more Bree’s. “Are you kidding me” I asked? “We have seven Bree’s here”. Holy Cow!! That has got to drive the kitchen nuts. And all seven were working the night we were there. We wanted a group picture but the restaurant was way too busy. So back to the food. Bree “The Server” brings fried bacon mac and cheese balls made just like the classic Italian Arancini. The crispy delights were oozing with hot cheddar cheese and served alongside with a house made Tapatio® Ranch Dip.

House made beer battered onion rings rounded out our appetizers and these gems are fantastic made with jumbo Spanish onions and fresh draft beer. Amazing! You have got to try the BBQ sauce served with these beauties. The sauce has three reduction cooking steps and takes over four hours to make. Patience is the key here for the chefs and it pays off with lots of happy faces at the tables.

Peanut Butter & Jellousy Burger

Now for the main event, the 50/50 burger. Oh boy, was it worth the wait. This burger is so big the chef cut’s it in half and holds the burger together with a steak knife. Each patty is hand-made and baby sat on the grill to the burger is cooked medium to medium well. Curiously, the burger patty is still pink due to the amount of bacon in the burger. The Slater 50/50 is served on a white brioche bun with a farm fresh fried egg and guacamole made with California Haas avocados. No scrimping on quality here. For the adventuresome try the PB&J (Peanut Butter and Jellousy). This is undoubtedly one of Slater’s favorite and it’s an award winner and highly recommended by Ron Pester the general manager.  Sterling Silver ground beef topped with thick cut bacon, creamy peanut butter and strawberry jelly on a honey wheat bun. My wife flipped out over this one and she doesn’t even eat peanut butter! The burgers were served with hand cut fresh fries with a house made chipotle ketchup.

Bacon Brownie

Alexis told us “There’s only one way to finish a meal like this, a bacon maple milk shake and a double stacked chocolate bacon brownie with chocolate genache and old school vanilla ice cream. I gave up. “Uncle” I screamed. The milk shake reminded me of a place in Canada and the brownie? Thank god my teenage daughter and her friend showed up. Boy were they happy!

So give Brooke Bayer, one of the manager’s, a call for parties. Or just ask for Bree. One of them is sure to be there. 

Slater’s 50/50 is open seven days a week at five locations. Find your location on the web at And by the way, show up HUNGRY!!


By Chef Robert Sturm