Hamburger Calabasas

Adam Horton Amps Up Saddle Peak Lodge Bar Menu

Saddle Peak Lodge, a former hunting lodge that’s been the culinary crown jewel of the Santa Monica Mountains for decades, recently introduced a full bar menu. The move coincides with a new era, as restaurateur Deep Sethi (Bombay Palace, Nirvana) took over SPL in October after a two-year business courtship with founder Ann Graham Ehringer. […]

Saddle Peak Lodge, a former hunting lodge that’s been the culinary crown jewel of the Santa Monica Mountains for decades, recently introduced a full bar menu. The move coincides with a new era, as restaurateur Deep Sethi (Bombay Palace, Nirvana) took over SPL in October after a two-year business courtship with founder Ann Graham Ehringer.

Adam Horton is back in the kitchen, and he’s introduced a bar menu that includes a burger—a first for SPL. Every night from 5 to 10 p.m., Adam offers a balanced bar menu that isn’t available in the dining room. He says, “The bar is a separate entity. This is a community where people want to come in jeans, kick their feet up and have a sandwich at the end of the night. Where else are you going to go? This is kind of a captive audience.”

That said, the menu is plenty ambitious, including a crispy chicken sandwich with grilled frisée, lemon, pickles and anticucho mayo that comes with Parmesan herb French fries. Game Sausage Trio features house-made sauces, which during my visit meant pheasant Cognac, duck jalapeño and wild boar cranberry.

For the first time ever, Saddle Peak Lodge is serving a burger. The SPL Burger features an 8-ounce Snake River Farms patty crafted from house-ground chuck. A Bread L.A. brioche bun also contains St. Agur blue cheese, crispy shallots, watercress and an umami bacon relish made with marinated shiitakes, caramelized red onions, soy, anchovy and Parmesan rinds. Each burger comes with Parmesan herb French fries (or a side salad). Adam says, “I could have done game or bison, but how’s that going to age in 15 years? I decided to go more traditional, since that’s what people want. After all, are we cooking for ourselves or other people?”

If you’re looking for something lighter, kale salad features frisée, almond, shaved vegetables, dates and roasted lemon-chili vinaigrette. A quinoa bowl hosts marinated mushrooms, poached egg, sesame, cashew, avocado and radish. 

419 Cold Canyon Rd., Calabasas, 818-222-3888

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