Old Classic Gets New Twist at Mo’s Restaurant

Owner Jay Sadofsky with longtime employees, bartender Bill Hill and waiter Michael Turner.

Jay Sadofsky has seen a dream become transformed into a neighborhood institution in the last 15 years as the owner of Mo’s Restaurant.

Sadofsky, who partnered with Bruce Hecker to purchase Hampton’s Restaurant in 1995, said he wanted to give himself a new challenge and reinvigorate the restaurant.

“It was a timing thing,” Sadofsky said. “I was finishing another part of my life, my brother owns Stanley’s, so I’m familiar with the restaurant business, and Bruce is one of the big motion picture caterers.”

Sadofsky said it seemed that while Hampton’s was fine as a restaurant, he wanted to reexamine its menu and service. Some elements of Mo’s, like the restaurant’s build-your-own burger bar, were actually in place at Hampton’s.

“The burger bar existed, but things were getting old,” he said. “I had an idea of updating this old standard. We held onto the burger concept, but we’ve expanded it to include some of the things that have changed in the dining zeitgeist, becoming healthier, using fresher ingredients, incorporating fusion with different influences.”

Sadofsky said he and Hecker’s familiarity with some top chefs working in the catering business has led to the incorporation of high end techniques in the restaurant, which still strives to serve “comfort Americana.”

Sadofsky said a partnership with a young chef at Ramsey’s Restaurant at the Toluca Lake Tennis Club has further enhanced that effort.

Mo’s newly remodeled dining room.

“We wanted to include ‘chef food’ in the casual dining experience,” Sadofsky said. “All the dressings and marinades are made in-house.”

In addition, all beef is certified Angus, which Sadofsky described as “the best beef you can buy for the American hamburger.”

Along with the ongoing upgrades to the dining experience, Sadofsky said that to celebrate the restaurant’s 15th anniversary, he wanted to update the look of the restaurant. A formerly enclosed portion is now an open patio, offering open air dining opportunities. The interior has also been opened up more.

“We wanted to give it a little bit of life,” Sadofsky said. “I wanted to update the experience of Mo’s at all levels. It’s just a little bit of an upscaling.”

In addition to the changes inside, Mo’s is celebrating its customers’ loyalty with a month-long celebration. Along with a number of giveaways of meals and different daily specials, Sadofsky will also give away an iPad in a contest for those who leave business cards. In addition on Wednesday, Oct. 27, Mo’s will host an anniversary party for customers who’ve been provided with an invitation to the event, but Sadofsky noted there would not be a much of a proverbial “velvet rope.”

Mo’s Restaurant is located at 4301 Riverside Drive in Burbank. For more information, call (818) 845-3009.

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