Hutch's is not my favorite restaurant in Pasadena - that honor would go to Yujean Kang or Gale's, depending on the night - but, paradoxically, there is no restaurant anywhere in the world that I love more. I have been eating there my whole life. My mom has been eating there almost her whole life. I have had more meals there than any other restaurant by far.
When I was in junior high my grandmother would pick me up from school and we would eat here two or three times per week. The day I got my drivers license when I was 16, I came back to my parents' house, collected my brother and best friend, and we immediately came here for lunch. My junior year of high school I did not have a date to the homecoming dance (believe it or not, I was a dork back then, too) so I came here for dinner by myself.
When I was 17 I broke my jaw and it was wired shut for several weeks. The thing in the world I craved most was a Hutch's hamburger. When the wires were finally cut I could barely open my mouth. Every day I did exercises and chewed gum in the hopes I could get my mouth open wide enough to eat a burger. It was the most excruciating wait of my life.
Hutch's makes my favorite hamburger anywhere. Would it be my favorite if I hadn't grown up eating it constantly? Probably not, but that's a meaningless question. It was what it was. I have had the burger every time I have eaten there except one, and I immediately realized the error of my ways.
On my most recent visit to Hutch's with a good friend of mine and one of her best friends, who was visiting from New York, I had my standard order: a side salad with house dressing and a double-meat hamburger with fries and cole slaw. It was great, as it always has been. My friend had the same thing, she also loves the burger, and her friend tried the Jamaican Jerk Chicken. He agreed that our burgers looked great, but he was very happy with his order, as he said it was "unbelievable."
It almost tempts me to try some of their Jamaican cuisine. But I know I won't. That burger is just too damn good.