The last remnant of the Hamburger Hamlet enterprise is now shut down, with no evidence that it will return to Los Angeles. A tipster writes in to say that the Sherman Oaks outlet is "closed and under new ownership." The sit-down burger chain was founded in 1950 by Harry and Marilyn Lewis (who also created Kate Mantillini, which is gasped its last on June 14), Hamburger Hamlet spread throughout the country before a slow demise. Two locations in the D.C. area persisted to this year as well before shuttering as well.
Just this January, the second-to-last location closed in Pasadena, giving way to a Du-Pars. The legendary restaurant was, "like a country club without the monthly membership," remembers one waiter, who also said in this LA Magazine piece: "I waited on everyone from Danny Thomas to Florence Henderson to Mel Brooks."
Just two years ago, someone had tried to revamp the old burger brand into a newer, fresher experience on Larchmont called Hamburger Hamlet XP, only to shut down shortly after. The classic Sunset Blvd location, which was immortalized in Entourage for being a lame power lunch spot by Ari Gold, closed in 2011 to make way for RivaBella and Chi-Lin (which is shortly becoming Blind Dragon).
Even after renovation and reinvention, the Hamlet just couldn't stick around to gain new customers. Thoughts, sentiments, old memories from Hamburger Hamlet? Hit it in the comments.
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