I would like to start this review by saying that if you’re from California, you should probably just stop reading here. If you say things like, “West coast best coast” or “Let me tell you about my startup,” you should stop reading here and continue training for your next triathlon.
I don’t really like In N Out. This has been a tough realization for me because I really wanted to like it. When I went to California for the first time in the summer of 2014, there were only two things I wanted to do: eat breakfast burritos and go to In N Out. With one day remaining on my trip, I finally made it to the Promised Land. I ordered a Double-Double (maybe two?), fries, and a soda. I even went outside and took a picture of myself triumphantly holding up my burger in front of the In N Out façade.
Then I ate the food.
It was okay.
I really didn’t want to think this way, though. For two years, I’ve been in denial. I convinced myself that I really needed to give In N Out another try and that surely on my second time, I would see In N Out for the extraordinary place that is. Unfortunately, I failed.
A double-double has two meat patties, two slices of American cheese, a sliced onion, lettuce, tomato and a unique spread all surrounded by two toasted buns made of “sponge dough”. It looks delicious—unlike many of its fast-food counterparts. However, it’s just decent. It tastes like a generic hamburger and maybe a bit worse. The sponge-y bread made me sad. The fries at In N Out also leave something to be desired. They’re not crispy and delicious, but airy, flaky, and unsatisfying. There’s a quality that’s absent in In N Out fries that seems to be present in the fries of all of its competitors. In N Out fries are just not ratchet enough. They seem under-fried and tasteless as opposed to the crunchy, delicious, greasy fries of its competitors. I should feel at least some shame after eating fast food fries. In N Out fries did not make me feel uncomfortable with my body in the least, and if fast food can’t do that for me, what’s even the point?
The best part of Five Guys was the shake. I ordered a Neopolitan (chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry) shake and it was great. Usually, I’m only able to take a few sips of a milkshake before I feel overwhelmed by intense richness and sugar, but In N Out’s milkshake was not overly sweet and had a really smooth and satisfying texture.
To all my Californian friends who just clawed at their computer screen for the four minutes it took to read this, I am very sorry. In N Out is not a bad fast food place. It is a perfectly okay place to eat with a chill atmosphere. I just prefer taking my cold, New York heart to Five Guys to eat greasy fries out of a brown sack.
Five guys: 6.0/10