Mar 31, 2016

Review: Shake Shack - ShackBurger

Shake Shack's ShackBurger features an Angus beef burger with American cheese, ShackSauce, green leaf lettuce, and Roma tomato on a non-GMO potato bun.

The price tag is $5.29 for one.

Shake Shack just recently opened in Los Angeles and even though I arrived shortly after opening in the middle of the week, there was already a line out the door (one that grew to spill onto the sidewalk by the time I got my food and sat down).

The burger felt rather small and was roughly the same circumference as a McDonald's hamburger but with a much thicker burger patty. It's probably thicker than any burger I've come across at a major fast food chain. There was a powerful beefy flavor paired with a coarse, juicy texture. It's just lightly seasoned with salt and pepper so what's there was just really flavorful beef and it is definitely the main attraction of the burger.

The lettuce and tomatoes were fresh and of good quality but didn't offer much crispness. The cheese was nicely melted for that creamy, familiar flavor from childhood.

Besides the beef, the ShackSauce was the other component that really stood out in the ShackBurger. There's a rich mayo creamy base to it but also little hints of this and that. It keeps you guessing but doesn't press. I like it.

The potato bun was pillowy soft and a little too soft for my liking. There wasn't much resilience to it so that when I held it, it squished down with a flimsy feeling. Still, the softness was nice and, to its credit, it didn't fall apart or turn soggy. They buttered and griddled the bun but I didn't really pick up any toasty crunch when eating.

I also tried their fries, which are crinkle-cut from Yukon potatoes. They were nice and crunchy with a light sprinkling of salt but were a little too dry.

Overall, Shake Shack's ShackBurger was excellent. I liked the simplicity and the beef was especially good--maybe the best I've had from a chain and particularly striking with its nuanced beefiness. It could use a little bit more crunch though; either from lettuce, toasting, or searing.

I would definitely get the burger again (but maybe when they open up a closer location--it took a little less than an hour to get there with L.A. traffic) but might skip the fries.

In case you're wondering, if I had to pick between the two, I'd pick a Double Double from In-N-Out over the ShackBurger.

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