Jul 28, 2014

Bites Nearby: The Counter

Ground zero for terrific burgers.

Bites Nearby: The Counter Bites Nearby: The Counter Bites Nearby: The Counter

The Counter

Town Center, Corte Madera

(415) 924-7000


There was one fast food burger chain that you used to say, “you can have it your way.” Well, at The Counter you can have your burger 312,120 different ways. That’s the number of combinations this multi-unit chain offers you.

How can that be, you say? Aren’t we talking about a burger patty, a bun and some fixin’s?

Not at The Counter, where you can choose from burgers made from beef, chicken, turkey, and veggie. The veggie burger is not one of those pale soy imitation beef numbers, but a mélange of roasted vegetables.

The burgers can be ordered as one-third, two-thirds of a pound or a whole pound. These weights are after cooking.

When it comes to cheese you have 11 choices from Imported Swiss to traditional Cheddar to decadent Brie. 

You’re not done yet. You can choose up to four toppings, from the exotic, like grilled pineapple, to the usual grilled onions to the downright weird like dried cranberries.

Then it’s on to the sauce. Okay, there are 20. I like the horseradish mayo, while my friends went for basil-pesto and roasted garlic aioli, respectively.

You’re almost done — just pick a bun. There are five: hamburger, onion bun, honey-wheat, English and rustic ciabatta.

Now, imagine if a server verbalized all these choices! That’s not a worry because everyone gets a pencil and a list of all those options. 

There are 18 Counters in California, but if you find yourself in Dublin or Australia, they are there too.

And in the near future, you can look forward to San Diego, Dubai and Bahrain.


Sleek diner. It is mostly black and white with interesting photographs.

The Drinks:

Fountain drinks, plus beer and wine.


Pass on the fried dill pickles they’re terrible, but do get the addictive onion strings. The fifty-fifty features half potato and half sweet potato fries; fries and onion strings (a good choice) and sweet potato fries and onion strings.  


There are signature burgers, like the “Purist,” which is a patty naked on a bun or a garden bowl, which includes a patty of choice topped with organic mixed greens, sliced cucumbers, tomatoes and a Dijon Balsamic.


Key lime pie, a brownie and an apple crumble are on the list.


On every visit, we found service to be top notch, whether sitting at the counter or in a booth.


1/3 pound is $8.50

2/3 pound is $10.95

One pound is $13.95

Fries are mostly $4.50-$5.95

Handicap accessible:


Noise level:

Can talk easily.

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