Inside is thick mahogany vinyl booths and dark wood worn smooth, like a sports bar that hasn't quite lost its Mob clientele yet. Outside is a covered patio area with a tree-lined courtyard, which is pleasant if the weather is nonvindictive enough.
The music is half bop-around-the-clock oldies, half wince-worthy '80s pop hits*. Outside there is always someone setting up sound equipment as if to play live music, but I always miss out on it (I hear there's a Jazz Night on Thursdays).
The intimidating black-and-white wall menu takes about forty minutes to read. There are daily soups and salads, yes, but you want The Stand's expertise with meat that goes in bread. A "Stand" Dog has about fourteen possible condiment selections, like red burger relish, deli mustard, spicy Cajun sauce, diced yellow or red onion, et cetera. A "Loaded" Stand Dog has about fourteen more choices to heap atop your dog, like baked beans, mushrooms or bleu cheese. The BBQ Dog (yellow onion, barbecue sauce, bacon) is topping-heavy, but it really doesn't need it. The Stand dogs are properly juicy with a snappy bite.
Sausages and brats too, yesh, yesh.
The burgers are well grilled, and I like the Turkey Chili Burger with cheddar. The chili is all chopped meat and tomato-sour like a Bolognese, and there's lots of crunchy lettuce, which I like on a burger. The buns are very slightly dry and I'd like to see a greater range of choices of them, but it doesn't derail my experience.
Everything usually comes with Stand chips, which are thick and tart** and you'll probably tire of them before you finish. To drink there's root beer on tap, or wine & beer for that matter (Fat Tire on tap!).
The ample parking lot is a little confusing, since it seems like it's connected to the bank building above The Stand, with posted signs demanding that you give your ticket to the attendant despite there never being an attendant. There are also locations in Century City, Westwood Village and Woodland Hills, and I can't tell which one is the original, but I'm betting it's this one; it's certainly been there as long as I can remember.
* Think "Boys of Summer" and "Neutron Dance".
** Like me.
( Categories: Cuisines (by Region), Deli, American, The Valley, Sandwiches/Burgers/Hot Dogs )
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