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Yankee Pier
286 Magnolia Ave
Larkspur, CA

The best burger in Marin! (so far)

What kind of unimaginative dingbat orders only fish at a fish hut? Not me. I keep an open mind and at the casual offshoot of the nearby Lark Creek Inn. I go hog wild and order cow. They serve one awe-inspiring burger! Absolutely worth coming back to this place again and again.

You’re always warmly greeted and the service is consistently good. Coffee is always refilled (very important.)

Nice selection of beer and wines, coffee is good, but not as strong as I like coffee to be.

I was on the brink of giving up on this place. Their fried clams and signature fish and chips are unimpressive. They start with good ingredients, but most of the fried food is on the limp and greasy side. To be fair, their clam chowder is pretty good (with the cute little packets of crackers in the mini galvanized buckets on the table.)

I asked them why the switched their super delicious lemon meringue tart (with a perfectly crisp pate brisee, tart lemon curd filling under a cloud of gorgeous meringue) to a lemon meringue pie with a soggy crusted, gluey sweet lemon curd shrouded by a cloying blanket of egg white oppression. They said that folks liked the new one better (yeah, INSANE folks.)

I used to scoff at folks who order salmon in a steakhouse, laugh at diners who asked for something cooked at a sushi bar. I always took a “when in Rome” view of dining…those days are gone. I have found that there are many restaurants that are really good at one thing. It’s easy to give up on a place because they can’t do everything perfectly, but if you order right, you have found the key to tracking down a yummy snack wherever you go.

A little beach shack style restaurant. It’s super cute
There’s indoor and outdoor seating. I prefer the back porch area when it’s nice weather (but they don’t always seat there when it’s slow.) My second choice is the front porch area has plastic walls and heaters for when it gets cold. There’s counter seating inside. My least favorite place to sit indoors is near their bathroom.
Grilled Chuck Burger ($9.75):
A good sized patty ordered medium rare. It comes with fries but I often ask to substitute steamed broccoli. This way you can order a rich dessert later (employing the law of compensatory calories – calories you save on fries should be applied to ice cream, duh). Anyway, back to the burger. The perfectly cooked patty of meaty delight is nestled in a bun that is not too wonderbready to hold up to the juices and not so crusty that it creates a blockade to the nicely textured interior. The ground chuck has the correct ratio of fat to lean. The most common mistake in making upscale burger is to make have too low fat content (which means a low flavor content in hamburgerese.) The leaf of crisp romaine, slices of onion and the less-anemic-than-most tomato give this burger high marks.
Overall Rating:

Overall: The burger at this place really rocks, the fried fish isn't always so great, though. 1 1/2 carrots out of 4.

Yankee Pier Bathroom Rating:
Just one: unisex. Almost always clean and well stocked.

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