9260 Alondra Blvd.
Bellflower, CA 90706
There are certain foods that people get the most passionate about. Pizza, Mexican food, and hamburgers are the items that get the most comments and arguments on my blog. People always think that their local spot for pizza is great, or that the Mexican restaurant that they eat at every Friday night makes the best carnitas. Burgers are probably the food that gets the most debate on these pages. Everyone seems to have an opinion, which I love, because it just means I get to try more burgers. That's what brought us to Fronk's.
After I declared that G Burger is my favorite burger place in OC for now, a reader of the blog, Debi, wrote me and told me that I must try Fronk's in Bellflower. Although not in OC, she claimed that it was right up there with the burgers that she had at G Burger. I wrote down the name, checked out the menu, and waited patiently for the opportunity to try Fronk's.
That chance came about a month later. We got roped into attending my niece's cheer-leading competition in Long Beach. We went last year, and a lot of the groups used the same songs. Almost every group used, "Call Me Maybe" by Carly Rae Jepsen, which is a catchy song, but after hearing it for the tenth time it almost makes your ears bleed. I had a feeling that this years song that would be used to death would be, "Blurred Lines", and these groups did not disappoint. I counted at least four of the groups using that song. So after hearing it the fourth time, and not wanting to go for five, we decided to take the short drive up the 605 Freeway to Bellflower, and try the burgers at Fronk's.
I can never recall being in the city of Bellflower ever. The area where Fronk's is now located kind of reminded me of Main Street USA, but a little more rundown. There are some small business's, a lot of traffic with little parking, and a lot of empty business spaces. Even Fronk's is on borrowed time at this location. We were alerted that they are going to be moving by the projected date of February 1st, 2014. Not to fear Bellflower residents, they are still going to be in your city, but in a new building, which is at the corner of Bellflower Boulevard and Walnut Street.
Back to the still operating location of Fronk's, which is pretty tiny, with about fifteen tables. I really liked the eclectic decor that they had here. License plates, old lunch pails, and random pictures adorned the walls. My Dad went to the restroom and had to take a picture of Pekkle, which is hung above the urinal. I did not know that my Dad was such a fan of Sanrino characters. Guess I know what I'm getting him for Christmas now. Each table is adjacent to a ledge that holds numerous hot sauces and other condiments. The only hot sauce I can tell was missing was Tapatio, but there was enough here to compensate for that.
We got here at about 11:30 on a recent Sunday morning. We were the first customers of the day, but during our visit, the restaurant had a smattering of people wandering in. The menu here was a little intimidating for me. Not that it was outrageously large, but I know I don't make it up this way with great regularity, so I wanted to make sure I ordered the right things. Burgers, sandwiches, and barbecue dominate the menu. We quickly ordered a bunch of food, and waited with great anticipation. This is how it all came out for us.
There were numerous items I wanted to try off of Fronk's appetizer section of the menu, but I knew I had a lot of food coming, so I limited myself to the Beer Battered Corn on the Cob ($2.25). Yes, you read that right, beer battered corn on the cob. After eating this, I wondered why the fair does not offer this. I am not even a big corn on the cob guy, but it was hard for me to share this with Katie. The breading had the consistency of a real good piece of fried fish, the corn inside was good, and the jalapeno ranch sauce served on top of this gave it a big flavor boost. A very unique appetizer and something that should not be missed on visits to Fronk's.
I am always interested to see what Katie comes up with when ordering, to see if I can guess what she will have. I am about 70 percent accurate, but the menu at Fronk's was too big, and I was not so sure what she would get. She ended up selecting the Buffalo Chicken Ranch Sandwich ($9.75). Here they beer batter their chicken, then toss it in their spicy Buffalo sauce. Normally Katie is not a big fan of spicy, but she liked this sandwich. She thought the sauce had just the right amount of heat to tickle the taste buds, but not overpower the chicken. She liked the batter used on the chicken, as it was not too heavy, but you could still get a good crunch from it. The bun did an excellent job of holding everything together. She proclaimed that this is the way all buffalo chicken sandwiches should taste. The onion rings had the same beer batter, which lent to a light tasting onion ring, while still have a decent crunch to it.
My Mom spied the Pulled Pork Sammy ($8.95) and could not resist this house specialty. The slow roasted pork was topped with melted jack cheese. It usually comes with Cole Slaw, but my mom wanted this on the side. This was a pretty good sized sandwich, piled high with pork, and more than enough cheese. The pork was tender, with a nice smokiness from the meat and sauce. My Mom loved this sandwich, almost as much as she loved the light, almost tempura style, onion rings she chose as her side item. She left Fronk's a very happy woman.
This good looking plate belonged to my Dad. It was no surprise that this mushroom lover ordered The Mighty Mushroom Swiss ($10.25). The burgers here are half pound Angus patties. This one is topped with sauteed mushrooms, grilled onions, lettuce, tomato, Swiss cheese, and mayonnaise. Again, there was plenty of all the toppings on this one. I really liked this burger. Even with all the cheese, mushrooms, and onions, you could still taste the quality of the meat. A great burger. As a choice of side item, my Dad went with the Bacon Blue Salad. This salad was made up of mixed greens, ranch dressing, tomato, chopped maple bacon, and crumbled blue cheese. I liked that this salad featured real bacon, instead of those dreaded processed bacon bits. My Dad claims that there was no dressing used on this salad, so he would dock points for that. The burger was great, even the half that he took to work the next day.
So I settled on the Spicy BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger ($10.50). This was another huge burger. The half pound patty was topped with their cayenne chili barbecue sauce, maple bacon, grilled onions, lettuce, tomato, pickles, cheddar cheese, and mayo. I really liked this burger, but I probably should have gone with something simpler on my first visit here. The spicy barbecue sauce kind of overpowered everything here, and I could not get a real good handle on the bacon and meat with this one. The bun definitely did an admirable job of keeping everything together here, while remaining soft. For my side item, I had the Beer Battered Zucchini Sticks. I thought these were not going to be too good, because they were cut too large, but they turned out to be pretty tasty. Good, crisp breading on the outside, and the inside was tender. I would not hesitate to get these zucchini sticks again.
Since Fronk's is known for the barbecue as well, I of course had to try it. So, I went with the Half Rack of Baby Back Ribs ($13.95 Ala carte). These are served with their own dry rub, then lightly brushed with their barbecue sauce. Even though I was full from the burger, I had a hard time parting with any of these ribs with my table mates. I liked them because they were tender. We only had to lightly pull the meat, and it would come off of the bone. I also liked that they were not drenched in sauce. I always think restaurants are trying to hide something if their ribs are drenched in sauce. Plenty of meat on these, but there was also some fatty ribs as well. Eating these piqued my interest about their other barbecue items, which I hope to try on future visits.
By the end of this meal, our stomachs were asking for mercy, but there was one more thing we needed to conquer, the Famous Peanut Butter and Hot Fudge Ice Cream Sundae ($6.95). Even with our bodies screaming no more, we devoured this sundae in mere minutes. The base was a homemade fudge brownie, which is then topped with melted peanut butter, hot fudge, topped with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream, and then crowned with a silo of whipped cream, sprinkles, and nuts. All great things singularly, but when put together it was fantastic. One of the best ice cream sundaes we have had while writing this blog. It might be worth the trip just to have this sundae, it was that good.
If you have skipped ahead to this recap, shame on you. You missed one of the better restaurants we have been to this year. We left Fronk's very full, and wondering when we could come back again. I was running through scenarios in my mind when we could find an excuse to come back to Bellflower again. Maybe on the way to the airport, maybe to take in some of the community events like Summer Streetfest or the famous Liberty Day Parade, or maybe we will just take another drive up this way on a lazy Sunday afternoon when we won't hit too much traffic, and have nothing else to do, but eat great burgers and that sundae again. I still think fondly on our visit, and have told all of my foodie friends about our time at Fronk's. The service was great, the food was fantastic, and we can not thank Debi enough for the great recommendation. You were right about Fronk's. It even made the cheer leading competition worth sitting through, which is saying a lot.
Out of five apples, (because I learned that Bellflower is not named after a flower, but a kind of apple, called the Belle Fleur), five being best to zero being worst, Fronk's gets 4 solid apples.
To keep up to date with all things Fronk's, go to their website here: http://www.fronks.com/