Norm's Place, in charming downtown Danville, CA, is an equally charming pub style place. I met my burger buddy, Mark and his brother Buzz for burger's and conversation. We were seated at a dark, wood-topped table by our friendly waitress Liz. The red walls were adorned with an interesting assortment of auto parts hung as art. Flat screens were strategically scattered throughout Norm's to keep one up with all the scores and highlights, even at noon on a Wednesday.
The menu is scattered with 10 ounce burger combinations like the Hart'z Burger and the Englishman. I asked Liz what she recommended. She pushed me off menu to a combination of her own making called the Dirty Burger, with bacon, avocado and swiss cheese. ($11.50 with fries.) She asked me if I wanted the bacon crispy. I can't imagine having it any other way, but I appreciated the choice. We also ordered onion rings. I asked Liz if they had milk shakes and I think I offended her. "We have upscale burgers. This is no burger, shakes and fries place." You have to love an employee with such passion.
As the onion rings arrived I noticed Weezer playing on the speakers. Next came Cocaine Blues, the Johnny Cash version from Folsom prison. I liked the place even better. The rings were thick with crispy batter. Hot and tasty, we rated them 4 spatulas.
The burgers and fries came next. I like to taste the fries before I taste my burger. These were medium thick with skins on. Slightly overcooked, salty and a little soggy, they rate a 2.5.
The burger however is a different story. It was cooked a perfect medium, juicy and seasoned nicely with a pepper mixture and topped with the afore mentioned crispy bacon and avocado. Another nice touch was the nicely toasted brioche-style bun. I really liked this burger and rate it 4.5 spatulas.
We sat and chatted, very comfortable in this charming spot. Liz kept our drinks full and didn't rush us out. I will be back.
Burger 4.5 spatulas out of 5
Fries 2.5 spatulas
Onion Rings 4 spatulas
Milk Shake - Don't even ask for one.
356 Hartz Ave.
Danville, CA 94526