Pearl's Phat Burger is small hole in the wall joint in Mill Valley. I read about the place from Yummy Chow's Burger Holy Grail list, listed to my burgers-to-taste list and wanted to give it a try. They are also highly recommended in most of the forums so my expectations were high.
We went there on late Friday afternoon, after the lunch time. One thing that I noticed right away was the missing personality. They have a nice 50s style logo and that's about it. They try to look like an old school diner with checkered floor and standard diner tables and stools but the place still has really indurstrial feel in it.
I made our order on the counter, went to our table and waited, and our order was served to our table. They only have 4 or 5 tables so the space is pretty small. It worked well but when the place is packed I bet it's a chaos.
Burgers are served in standard red baskets, and yes, the word phat means BIG. Their Phat burger size is 1/2 pound and they also serve Mini Pearl Burgers which are 1/4 pound.
I don't know if my patty was really 1/2 pound, it looked really thin and it wasn't particulary juicy. I ordered it medium rare but got it well done. Cheese was cheddar and bacon was crispy, all the burgers are served with lettuce, tomato, onions and mayo. Nothing wrong with those and as you can see it was nicely stacked. The bun was a nightmare, it was toasted from the inside but the texture was fluffy and it was one of those buns that just crumb in your hand. With a proper bun it would have been easy to eat but now it was just a big mess.
After all the reviews I was really disappointed. Maybe the place has a new owner, dunno?! I need to give it another try some day.