Ok, I realize the previous long thread but here's a couple more notes on the joint.
Had a craving late night so went there (and usefully, apple pan is one of the few restaurants/diner/cafe that are open till midnight or 1am on the weekends in the area - so if you're going after a first time visit, go late night so you don't have to wait in line nor will it be built up as much).
Anyways, I ordered up a Double Cheddar Cheeseburger Hickory style and it was good and beefy and cheesey (withe th double Tillamook it really adds an extra oomph to the whole endeavor). Once again, is it the best burger in town? Not necassrily. Does it fit the need for a burger? Yes. Also, the burger here is definitely at the very least a couple times bigger than an IN n Out burger. Both in thickness and diameter. And here the meat actually acts as integral part of the sandwich at the very very least, yet, at I n O the burger acts more as just another condiment. An apple pan burger is closest to a Johnny Rocket's burgers, right down to the Tillamook cheddar. As someone noted before, withe the variety of farmhouse/artisanal fromage available in Southern California, Tillamook is not as special as it used to be. Which is correct.
As for the U-shaped counter only seating at the Apple Pan, it does lead to some communal-ness at times. And for the most part the food and service never changes. If you believe the waiters to offer crappy service, it will be the same next time and the time after that and also subsequent to that one. the only thing that truly changes is the Prices.
So with that the financials. A burger here without any cheese is 6.20, with add another 50 cents. a soda in a can is a buck seventy-five. fries (which i think are crap) are two dollars. apple pan (which i believe to be the worst in town, yet, serves as the eponymous namesake for this establishment) is 5.25 and your banana cream or coconut cream pie will run you a good 5.50. Now add it all up and see if it's worth it. Lastly, for what it's worth, they seem to increase prices about one every three or four months (sometimes by only dime so you don't really notice and other times by close to a dollar or so).