In 1924, teenaged Lionel Sternberger put cheese on a hamburger and sold it to a delighted customer at his father’s roadside stand, The Rite Spot, at 1500 West Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena. “The Aristocratic Burger” at the Rite Spot is the first recorded instance of a hamburger with cheese being cooked and served to a customer. The Rite Spot is long gone. The site where it stood is now home to the LA Financial Credit Union. On January 5, 2017, the Pasadena Chamber of Commerce and LA Financial Credit Union unveiled a plaque commemorating the invention of the cheeseburger by young Mr. Sternberger. LA Financial Credit Union is on the site fo the original Rite Spot
Pasadena Mayor Terry Tornek was on hand to welcome guests and take part in the dedication ceremony. LA Financial Credit Union Vice President Amanda O'Brien and Pasadena Chamber CEO Paul Little also were part of the dedication.The Pie ‘n Burger truck was on hand serving cheeseburgers to those in attendance. 20% of the proceeds from the sale of burgers was donated to Ronald McDonald House Pasadena.
The plaque unveiling kicked off Cheeseburger Week® in Pasadena.
We are very pleased that LA Financial Credit Union is allowing us to memorialize the invention of the cheeseburger on the site of the original Rite Spot in Pasadena. In the city where Julia Child was born and the world’s attention is focused on New Year’s Day, we thought it appropriate to commemorate the invention of the cheeseburger, as well.
The invention of the cheeseburger at the Rite Spot has been documented by the Los Angeles Times, Time magazine, cheese-burger.net, Hamburger Heaven: the Illustrated History of the Hamburger and The San Gabriel Valley Tribune. In2011, CNN carried the story of sixteen-year-old Lionel Sternberger and the creation of a culinary sensation. “The Aristocratic Burger: A Hamburger with Cheese” originally sold for fifteen cents at The Rite Spot in Pasadena.
Cheeseburger Week® from January 8th to January 13th, Pasadena honors Lionel Sternberger's genius in inventing the cheeseburger. Forty of Pasadena's favorite restaurants, lounges and burger joints offer their signature burgers, some special creations and great deals during Pasadena Cheeseburger Week®. Cheeseburger Week® is a Pasadena Restaurant Week and California Restaurant Month event presented by the Pasadena Chamber of Commerce. Cheeseburger Week® is generously sponsored by the City of Pasadena and the Pasadena Star-News. Information on Cheeseburger Week®, the Cheeseburger Challenge® or Cheeseburger Crawls visit www.pasadenarestaurantweek.com.
LA Financial Credit Union is a member-owned not-for-profit financial institution, offering a member-focused alternative to banks and savings and loans. Every member is a co-owner, there are no stockholders. Founded in 1937, to provide LA County employees with a safe, convenient place to save as well as to borrow, LA Financial now serves all of LA County. Anyone who lives, works, worships, volunteers or attends school in LA can apply for membership. LA Financial provides checking and savings accounts, investing, home and auto loans with extremely competitive rates, and many other free services. Learn more about LA Financial at: www.lafinancial.org.
The Pasadena Chamber of Commerce and Civic Association is a professional business organization. Since the earliest days of Pasadena, the Chamber has played a major role in the development of this internationally renowned city. Since 1888, when the organization was founded as the Board of Trade, the Chamber's primary purpose has been the enhancement of both the business climate and the quality of life in Pasadena. The Pasadena Chamber of Commerce serves 1450 members.