Jumping off the deep end is an expression that owner Scott Whitehead of Ty’s Burger House in Oceanside, CA does every day. With no prior restaurant experience (unless you count backyard grilling and watching Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives), the die-hard surfer and his son Tyler opened Ty’s Burger House in 2010 with the hopes that they could provide Oceansiders with a local spot to grab a well crafted hamburger with character.
Scott attributes the restaurant’s success to the quality of his food and the power of word-of-mouth advertising. He doesn’t own a computer nor does his restaurant have a website an unconventional route for a modern day restaurateur. I surf in the morning and flip burgers in the afternoon. I’m going to get you back here because of the food, not because of any marketing, says the go-with-the-flow owner.
At Ty’s Burger House (known colloquially as simply Burger House’) an air of ease resonates amongst staff and patrons alike. You can enjoy your burger inside amongst surfing decor or outside on the quaint, plant laden patio. The menu is the product of backyard tasting sessions and was approved by Scott’s family and friends. With the exception of the addition of wild game burgers, it has remained the same since opening. Scott remarks, I want to keep a simple menu. What I do sell, I have tried my hardest to perfect.
Best sellers include the California Burger (Tyler Whitehead’s take on California burritos), the Bacon Bleu Cheese Burger, the Jalapeno Burger and the Western Burger, which all come with a choice of either a 1/2 pound or 1/3 pound patty. To accommodate for the varied tastes of the military, Scott introduced wild game burgers to his menu. We’re a big military town. A lot of people are from hunting states. I thought Why not try to bring a little bit of home to here?’ Offerings include Open Range Grass Fed Beef, Buffalo, Kangaroo, Venison, Wild Boar, and Elk. The wild game burgers have a more distinct taste, says Scott. The venison is served with poached pears in red wine, mushrooms, bacon, lettuce and tomato; the kangaroo is complete with creamed horseradish sauce, lettuce, tomato, red onion and pickle; and the elk is topped with garlic aioli sauce, lettuce, tomato, red onion and pickle. Prices for the 1/2 pound patty, kangaroo, venison and elk burgers range from $9 to $11 and come with your choice of fries, sweet potato fries, onion rings or side salad.
As long as he is able to make his customers happy and catch a few waves, Scott feels he has achieved his goals. I enjoy what I do, so I just take everything as it comes. I try and get the restaurant open on time every day and let things flow. I surf, make burgers and enjoy hanging out with my son.