Al's Big Burger: 437 San Pablo Avenue in Albany
Cost: $5.29 (bacon cheeseburger, fries extra)
Image Source: blogger's own
I've driven past this hamburger stand on San Pablo Avenue for ages, but have never tried their burger. I didn't realize there was such a strong following backing this place up. There are several local newspaper clippings that have reviewed this place in the past. Apparently, I read that Al's uses wood chips to charbroil their burgers. Also, they use rib eye for their burger patties. I ordered a bacon cheeseburger with swiss, however, there's no grilling preference option.
First of all, I thought the service was very friendly. I could just sense a good vibe with everyone working there. Secondly, it smelled delicious inside.
Verdict: Okay, so it's a hamburger dive, similar to Smokehouse and Oscar's which I've reviewed so far. The burger was cooked in between Oscar's and Smokehouse in terms of grilling temperature (Oscar's is more rare than Smokehouse). But it's a 1/3 lb. patty, and it had loads of fixings and pretty tasty bacon. Probably my favorite out of the three mentioned, of course it's rather far from where I'm at to be a convenient dive.
Definitely worth it if you're in the area. It's a hearty, honest charbroiled burger, in my opinion.