Humble Potato takes a classic diner menu and adds several twists. It feels very much like a fusion restaurant, but as their name implies, the changes don’t completely transform the meal. Instead, every ingredient only enhances the essence of its base.
HP lives in an unassuming storefront with a bit of flair — simple but spiced up. Seeing the theme?
The french fries came out first, and I knew immediately that this was a good place to be eating lunch. Fries are one of the most core menu items of any diner, and they are cooked to perfection here. The inside is hot and not mushy. The outside is a perfectly salted golden-brown. The ketchup is not some hipster reimagining that so often kills a side like this. It's pure and delicious.
But then… It’s also served with mayo ketchup! It’s a subtly spicy and creamy blend that still tastes like ketchup and still complements the fries just as well as plain ketchup. I loved both condiments equally, and that comes from someone who usually plays favorites with his sauces.
Okay, I went for the big mama on this one. I think a simpler burger is generally a better indicator of food quality, but… sometimes I just can’t help myself. I mean, look at it. But again, even with the extra toppings, notice that it doesn’t veer too far from a standard bacon cheeseburger. It just has a couple extras.
And boy is it satisfying. It’s rich with fatty meatiness without being too nasty greasy, and the bun is light and toasted which adds a nice crisp to each bite. That and the bacon — not overcooked but not limp like a noodle. While some of the toppings try to cut through the umami and add contrast, there isn’t much that lettuce can do against a quad combo of beef, egg, bacon, and cheese, but that should be expected for a burger like this.
Up to this point, I had been quite impressed yet not ecstatic about HP. The Obaasan is what captured my heart. Maybe it’s not a fair game since fried chicken sandwiches will always be my first love, but even among its peers, I feel like this is a special sandwich.
Yet again, look at how uncomplicated it is: fried chicken, slice of cheese, slaw, bun. That’s it. It’s quality over quantity here, and every ingredient is added with intention. The bun is the same as the burger’s — light and crispy. The slaw adds crunch and also a hint of spicy citrus. The cheese pulls everything together without adding too much of its own flavor. And notice how this is a perfect setup for the star, the chicken itself. And this star can dance. It’s crispy. It’s juicy. It’s tender. It’s meaty. It’s a classic with a twist.
And there you have it. Take a simple dish, add a bit of uniqueness that enhances it while not reinventing it, and above all, prepare it with quality in mind. That seems to be the ethos here. And if I hadn’t also eaten an enormous burger, I absolutely would have ordered another Obaasan to go.