Favorite burger joint?
With Capler's post about visiting Wendy's, I thought I'd ask a question as well. Which fast-food joint has the best burgers? Since I'm a very picky person, I only eat my burgers plain (try ordering a plain cheeseburger.... "Do you want cheese on that?").... so I feel qualified to list my thoughts on various fast-food restaurants hamburgers. Here's my takes on some of America's more popular eateries:
* McDonald's- Their regular hamburgers aren't exactly the greatest and are actually rather bland. The grey meat-like substance has a unique flavor to it, though and I don't mind one from time to time. However, I certainly don't rate them very highly. If the buns aren't toasted, they are not very good at all.
* Burger King- Not bad.... and much bigger than the Golden Arches, but for some reason, they always come out soggy. I guess that's what happens when they throw it in the microwave... it gets a sort of "steamed" effect.
* Wendy's- In my opinion, these are the best burgers in the fast-food business. The meat actually tastes like meat and you get a decent sized patty on their quarter-pound singles. Doubles and triples are a cholesterol-lovers dream. The only problem I have with Wendy's is they hardly ever toast their buns. Can you tell I think too much about this?
* White Castle: You call this meat? It must be the onions that gross me out, but even without them, these little "snacks" are just plain nasty and they leave a foul after-taste for hours.
* Hardee's: Not bad either, but pretty blah. The meat has very little taste to it (as does everything else at Hardee's).
I've never eaten at Jack-In-The-Box or In-And-Out Burger on the west coast, so I can't give opinions on those. Around these parts, we have a drive-in called Swenson's that has THE best burgers I've ever had. They use a flaky, pastry-like bun and put brown sugar in the meat, resulting in a taste you can't get anywhere else. Add in some of their delicious fries and a grape milk shake and I'm about as happy as can be. If you're ever in the Cleveland/Akron, OH area, check them out. Their website (http://www.swensonsdriveins.com) lists a complete menu. Mmmm......
So, what burgers does everyone else like?
(who has WAY too much time on his hands today to be discussing soft drinks and burgers)
In my area, my favorite fast-food burger is Checkers. They are fresh not frozen and very tasty.
Wendy's are fine, I would go there 2nd. Third would be Burger King. Last is definitely
McDonald's. Truly the worst tasting burger around - IMHO.
I'd have to agree that Wendy's is the best amoung the fast food chains & they have much better burgers than the cardboard sandwiches that you get at others. On a humorous note, one one time at the Mc Donalds in Prairie du Chien, WI, they had posted the following announcement out on their sign........Now hiring, closers. Well, low & behold a 50 mile per hour wind came up & blew the "c" off of the sign...leaving it reading..........Now hiring, losers. We got pictures of it & sent them to Jay Lenno. I don't know if he ever used it though.
Then, there was the time this summer when I took a trip up to VF. I actually went up there along with my mom & dad because........unlike when you were a kid, as an adult, one can sometimes find it kind of nice to travel together once again......for old time sake. My parents were kind of interested in checking out the casinos & other local entertainment in the area. Anyway, we stopped at a Hardees in La Crosse on the way back home & I've never seen such a pathetic crew of workers as what were employed there. There were three teen agers working up front & one was just as clueless as the other. A blonde girl was trying to act like she was in charge & was giving this guy about her same age crap because he was not having much luck scooping ice cream to make a shake. It took them forever & a day to finally even take our order & cars were really lining up out at the drive through & they were completely ignoring all customers while they attempted to make these shakes. Finally, the blonde sarcastically said to the guy trying to scoop ice cream: "Here, let me show you how it's done" & she proceeded to have the same problem he was having. My Dad asked her what they were trying to make & she responded" "We're trying to make shakes & they're really really hard to make. Finally, Dad scaled back his order & said he's just have an ice cream cone. Fianally she got around to scooping the ice cream into a cone & in the process, completely crushed it. I was trying to be polite, but I just could no longer hold back the laughter.
Finally, Dad, feeling sympathy for her said..."oh well, you can just put the ice cream in a plasic bowl of some sort & that would be fine. She took a plasic boat shaped container like you'd get a bannana split in & tipped the cone upside down in the dish & presented it to dad & said it's an "ice cream cone......sundea....something" At this point, I had to leave the building because I could no longer resist breaking into histarical laughter. I generally don't believe this stereo type about blondes, but this one really filled the shoes!
Your story about hiring losers was a riot! LOL
Wendy's has the best fast food by a lone shot. But their 99 cent burgers leaves a lot to be desired. You get lot of onions, lettuce, tomato, mustard and a little slider of meat. It is like they take the single patty and run it through a meat slicer.
Burger King is very messy. You can't eat that and drive at the same time. It is like wearing you fixings in your lap. Otherwise the burgers are kind of ok but I have to crave them before I go. Once I get one I'm pretty much done with them for a while. Their fish is a little better than McDonald's.
Hardee's, (and for those of you on the west coast, Carl Jr.)can be very good if you go during the lunch rush and get the food made fresh. Otherwise they sit in the window too long. The best thing they got going is the big all beef hot dog.
McDonald's something about that special sauce and those little cooked onions just don't sit well with me.
I hope she gave you dad the ice cream for free.
I cannot agree with your choice of Wendy's. It is fine and better than some of the rest, but just not up to the burgers at Carl's Jr or In and Out.
Carl's Jr's new "Six Dollar Burger" is exceptional for a fast food joint. I also love the Bacon Western Cheeseburger as well. Burger, BBQ, Onion Ring and Bacon are the perfect combo. They also have a great sourdough bacon cheeseburger, but it is not quite as good as the one at Jack In The Box.
Now while Carl's Jr and Jack In The Box are good nothing IMO beats In and Out Burgers. They are fantastic. I love the fries too, though many will say otherwise. The Double Double is a great burger. California is a great place to live!
If you want a really messy, but good burger then you've got to try the Original Tommy's Burgers. Their chili burgers are great! Messy, but very very good. They are also greasy which is okay once in awhile.
Now I am hungry.
Living in the Midwest, we don't have many of the cool fast food joints prevalent in the West. I have been to Las Vegas three times in the past 2 years, and there is an In And Out Burger restaurant at the Intersection of I-15 and Tropicana Blvd. I have passed it more times than I care to count on our way back to our downtown hotel. Everyone I have talked to has said nothing but good things about them and I hope to try them one day. The billboards around town look like the food there is quite yummy. Perhaps one of these days when I'm not eating at the Rio buffet I'll make a pit stop there.....
Being a "plain" person makes enjoying a hamburger a challenge. I'm sure I'd have a different vote if I liked toppings on my sandwiches, but for a plain fast-food burger, Wendy's gets my vote.
If I had to pick a "worst fast-food burger", I'd have to say Harvey's Restaurants of Canada would win the prize. Canada makes a mean donut at Tim Horton's.... but their burgers have a very strange "soy-like" taste to them. Nasty!
Eric, now your making me hungry. I miss working less than a mile from a Tommy's. :-)
On my trips to exotic places like Cedar Point, I have tried to sample the local fast food. I was disappointed to find that Hardee's is a clone of Carl's Jr. I finally got a chance to try White Castle (it's OK-I love onions).
Not fast food...but REALLY good in the Cleveland area is the Winking Lizard Tavern, a restaurant/bar. GREAT burgers and other stuff. I wish they had them out here in San Diego!!!!!
> Being a "plain" person makes enjoying a hamburger a
> challenge. I'm sure I'd have a different vote if I
> liked toppings on my sandwiches, but for a plain
> fast-food burger, Wendy's gets my vote.
So is your definition of "plain" someone who doesn't want any ketchup, mustard, pickles, onions, tomato and lettuce on a hamburger? In and Out Burgers are great plain too!
> If I had to pick a "worst fast-food burger", I'd
> have to say Harvey's Restaurants of Canada would win
> the prize. Canada makes a mean donut at Tim
You DID NOT just say Tim Horton's has a mean donut did you? Tim Horton's has to have the WORST donut I have ever had in my life. I have to thank the Reid's for introducing me to these donuts earlier this year. Without a doubt they were the worst. I never complain about Winchell's anymore after going to Tim Horton's. Krispy Kreme all the way!
Burger King all the way!
> So is your definition of "plain" someone who doesn't > want any ketchup, mustard, pickles, onions, tomato
> and lettuce on a hamburger? In and Out Burgers are > great plain too!
Yes, Eric, that would be me! I just do not like condiments for some reason... Ketchup is yucky, Mustard grosses me out, and pickles are just plain nsty! It's hard to explain "plain" to some of the workers though. They just don't get the concept of "nothing" on a hamburger. I'm waiting for the day that I just get a bun!
> You DID NOT just say Tim Horton's has a mean donut
> did you?
As a matter of fact, yes, I did say that! Maybe it's the fact that I have some Canadian lineage in my family.... or maybe it's because we've been getting them for years. In any case, I just love Tim Horton's donuts. The Canadian locations are great... the ones here in the States just don't have that same "magic" found North of the border. Don't get me wrong- I'm a big Krispy Kreme (and even Dunkin' Donuts) fan also.... but when I'm in Canada, give me a Tim Horton's donut, a Nestle Aero bar, and a Canadian McChicken sandwich and I'm a happy camper.
I like my burgers fairly plain---I'm plenty happy with just cheese and a little ketchup on them. (I usually get lettuce and tomato, too, then take them off and eat them separately as a "salad." Strange, huh?)
I can get my burger at In-N-Out like that. I just tell 'em, "No onion, no dressing" and I get it like that every time!
Hopefully, you'll get to In-N-Out soon. You'll go back every time you see that familiar yellow arrow pointing at the building.