The Great Battle: In-N-Out or Five Guys??
Ok, so you know it had to come down to this at some point, right? I am originally from the East Coast, but now I’m living on the West Coast. When I first moved out here and people found out how much I love to eat, the first thing I people asked was “Oh, have you tried In-N-Out yet?”
And then, when I meet people who have been to the East Coast for a somewhat prolonged period of time, I get asked, “Which do you like better, In-N-Out or Five Guys?” Then I am faced with a pair (or several pairs) of wide-eyed spectators, waiting eagerly for my answer. The person asking is almost invariably a Californian, and they usually try to answer their own question with a quick “In-N-Out, right? Of course, In-N-Out!” (By the way, why do people like to ask these questions and then answer for me as if they already know my answer? Oh, but that’s a rant for another day.)
Whoops. This may be blasphemous (and detrimental to my online career), but sorry to disappoint In-N-Out fans, but . . .
I love Five Guys.
This means a lot, coming from me. I’m not a huge steak person, and I am definitely not a huge burgers fan. At barbecues, I skip the burgers and go straight for the hotdogs. Now, this is not to say I don’t like In-N-Out. I do! I can see the appeal of both, but when it comes to preferences, Five Guys wins me over every time. The ability to choose from a ton of great toppings (onions, mushrooms, various sauces, pickles, peppers, etc.) without having to think about some “secret menu” for a juicy, savory burger topped with a slice of melted cheese . . .
‘Scuse me while I wipe the drool off my keyboard.
So when I flew home for a self-declared holiday in mid-October, the one thing I wanted to eat was, of course, Five Guys! I got home late Wednesday night (or in the wee hours of Thursday morning, whichever you prefer) on October 14, and when I went to pick up my brother on Friday from College Park, we headed right over to the College Park Five Guys across the street from the school to satisfy my craving.
Not only that, but the fries. I am a SUCKER for carbs. Especially french fries. Especially steak fries. I think that’s the main beef I have with In-N-Out (pun intended, of course): their fries suck. I discovered “well-done” In-N-Out fries this past summer while working in Irvine, and their crispiness helped their case somewhat, but what really makes me happy are thick, salty fries (see picture to the left).
What you see is a “small” order. They take a 16 oz. styrofoam cup, fill it to the brim with fries, then add another scoop of fries just as they put the whole cup into a large, brown paper bag, filling half the bag in one go. It really isn’t so much a “small” as it is a helping for a “small” giant. Or for three people: my brothers and me. I can’t even imagine how many fries a large would bring.
By the way! How is it that people on the West Coast have never heard of Old Bay seasoning? Or Boardwalk Fries? How do they live? How?
One last thing about Five Guys before I go and cry because there isn’t one in San Francisco: they give away peanuts. Salted, unshelled, free peanuts. Before I went to pick up my brother, my parents asked me to bring back some peanuts for them. So I did. An entire bagful.
(Disclaimer: I am in no way saying that In-N-Out is not good. It is. If you have not been to In-N-Out, please take the opportunity to go and try it and decide for yourself. Five Guys is just better, is all I’m saying.)
Filed under: Eating Out, photography, restaurant, Travel | 5 Comments
Tags: burgers, College Park, fast food, Five Guys, Food, french fries, In-n-Out, restaurant, san francisco, washington dc