Pie ‘n Burger first opened in the fall of 1963 on California Blvd., just off South Lake in Pasadena. It continues to be in the same location to this day. The recipes, products and methods used in preparing the award winning food today are the same as those used 46 years ago.
Michael Osborn is the current owner of Pie ‘n Burger. He began eating there as a 9-year-old kid soon after it opened in 1963. His family lived in Arizona, but his grandmother, whom he visited each summer, lived in Arcadia and worked at the old Bullocks Pasadena around the corner from the diner. He loved the burgers. He loved the strawberry pie. As a USC student, he started working at Pie ‘N Burger in 1972 and has been there ever since.
Under Osborn’s stewardship, the restaurant has added a few items to keep up with the times : a vegetarian burger, fresh fruit and cereal at breakfast. But mostly he’s kept things as they were. The Formica counter, the swivel stools, the longtime waitresses and cooks all remain. There is one waitress that has been there since the restaurant opened in 1963, and the baker has been the same since 1971. (It was just last year, a decade after the paper’s demise, that the Herald Examiner newsrack was removed from the sidewalk in front of the restaurant.) And the food is as it ever was.
Pie ‘n Burger has been honored with numerous awards for the quality of its food and exists today as a testament to an era that has not faded away.
Exerpts from L.A. Weekly July 16-22, 1999 issue by Sue Horton