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This Legendary Breakfast Burrito Shack in Burbank Has a Hard Stop-Time of 11 O’Clock

9:41 AM PST on February 8, 2019

    [dropcap size=big]W[/dropcap]hen she was younger, Burbank native Stephanie Hansen remembers her father’s most successful method for getting her out of bed on a Saturday morning: the breakfast burrito from Corner Cottage.

    “So my father has a rule, ‘You don’t come, you don’t get,’ Hansen recalled. “It’s how he got us out of bed on the weekends to walk to the Corner Cottage, stand in line, and get a breakfast burrito.”

    “There is nothing worse than watching your sisters eating their perfect burrito while you have a bowl of cereal,” she remembered.

    The Corner Cottage in Burbank. All photos by Cesar Hernandez.
    The Corner Cottage in Burbank. All photos by Cesar Hernandez.

    To this day, local devotees of Corner Cottage in Burbank make the wait at the small storefront at Victory Boulevard and Verdugo Avenue.

    Vanessa McCullers and her daughter Jazz started coming to the Corner Cottage when Jazz was taking tennis lessons nearby, almost ten years ago. “We saw a line wrapped around the building,” McCullers told L.A. Taco. They were intrigued and gave Corner Cottage a try. “We’ve been coming ever since.” Despite the fact that Jazz’s tennis lessons ended long ago, they travel all the way from Northridge, and try to make it out at least every six weeks.

    The burritos are assembled on large flat-top grill, where a pile of potatoes sit stacked before they are griddled to perfection and sliced into precise small pieces, then mixed expertly with egg batter.  The only soundtrack of the kitchen – which you will hear throughout the premises while you wait – is the sound of the team of cooks with metal spatulas scraping against the grill, like swords being drawn into battle.  

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    Brothers Jim and Ted together along with their crew have been slanging some of the best breakfast burritos the L.A. area has to offer for the past couple of decades. For many, Corner Cottage serves as a destination for those willing to make the special trek, Many of whom still find themselves returning faithfully to get their fill.

    Hansen grew up in Burbank and was in town visiting on a recent Saturday. She just had to pay the Cottage a visit, she told L.A. Taco. “Now that I don’t live near the Corner Cottage, I crave the simplicity of the ingredients, the quiet of the early morning line and that salsa that burns so bad but you can’t stop piling it on,” Hansen said.

    Breakfast burrito at the Corner Cottage in Burbank. Photo by Cesar Hernandez.

    [dropcap size=big]T[/dropcap]he Cottage wait is legendary. It’s open every morning except Sunday. But on Saturdays, the wait-time often lasts up to an hour. Additionally, the Corner Cottage has a hard stop time of 11 am for their breakfast burritos — with no exceptions.

    It’s not uncommon to see the dismayed look of new customers who arrive too late.

    “We got up because once you have your perfect burrito order down – sausage, light potato, sauce in and on the side – you know it will be exactly the way you like it, every time,” Hansen explained.

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    When McCullen’s brings her out of town guests, the first question that is always asked: “Why would someone wait 45 mins for a burrito.” Her response always is “because it’s the best burrito ever!”

    Even with the long wait times and strict rules, the ambiance of Corner Cottage carries a distinction that is uniquely Los Angeles – families pushing strollers will rub elbows with hypebeast couples dripping in streetwear attire, idly waiting behind two heavily tattooed dads accompanied by their younger children whose faces are glued to their smartphones to keep their attention in order to pass the time during the longer-than-usual wait time. A true portrait of a city and its people.

    Janet and Tony Kinnaman have been coming for years. They initially heard about it from a coworker and now make the trek from Tujunga “because it's so good.” They bring their young daughter as she chomps on forkfuls of cut-up burrito fed to her from her father, with a grin across her face with every bite.

    Above the bustling sounds of the kitchen, the simple letter board menu reads the selection of bacon, ham, sausage, steak or plain. Paired with those flavors, customers opt for their signature salsa inside (as most in the know do) or get it on the side.

    The salsa itself has reached its own cult status; people inquiry on their Yelp page about its ingredients. Its tight confetti-like appearance is made up of jalapeño, onion, cilantro, and tomato. The salsa provides a sharp tasting spice that cuts through the contents of the burrito itself.

    But what makes the Corner Cottage truly special is the community connections, according to Jazz McCullers. “We’ve been coming here for ten years and they – the owners – watched me grow up,” she said before being interrupted by her mother.

    “Matter of fact,” Vanessa McCullers looked at her daughter. “I harassed her [each morning] an hour until she got up.”

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