Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Food: Five Guys Burgers and Fries

I take comfort in the fact that very few places can cook a burger better than one you can cook yourself. Unlike steak, where restaurants get most of the fancy USDA Prime marbled stuff, the home chef can start out with the same quality ground beef as any restaurant. It then all boils down to the cooking, and few restaurants boast someone who'll cook with the same care and love as homemade.

The "Five Guys Burgers" chain of fast-casual restaurants tries pretty hard, but in the end, loses just the same to my Dad's Weber grill. First of all, their burgers are almost as expensive as an actual sit-down joint - if my burger alone is going to be $5, I expect something good. The burgers are pretty good, but I've had better (Okeechobee Steakhouse's steak burger and the New Deal Cafe's burger spring to mind). On the upside, you have a wide choice of toppings.

The best value on the menu, strangely enough, is the fries. They're greasy, they're hot, and "Five Guys" gives you a ton of them. A "large" serving will easily satisfy the fry cravings of three or four people. My Dad generally doesn't go through the trouble of frying up potatoes when he grills a burger (I figure most people who grill burgers at picnics skip the fries), so in that respect, the burger-and-fries combo offered by "Five Guys" fills a specific niche.

Rating: 2/4 stars


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