By Mike Thayer
I recently wrote about what to look forward to in 2019 from fast food. Trending, are smokehouse/steakhouse style burgers and sandwiches and the meat of the year is predicted to be brisket.
Consumers are clamoring for something more, creations beyond the ordinary realm of classic burger and sandwich flavors. People want smokey, they desire more than just ketchup and mustard, folks are calling for cheeses with deeper flavors and buns with a little more tease than run-of-the-mill sesame seeds. And it's no different when it comes to other meat on bread options, a.k.a., pizza, consumers are looking for more, something beyond the traditional flavors.
For dinner today, I went with Five Guys. This was my first visit to a Five Guys joint. They've got some great reviews online and I was in the mood for a burger so I figured it was time to see what this place is all about. And while they don't have a Smokehouse/Chophouse specific option on the menu, you can order BBQ sauce and/or A-1 as a topping, making any burger choice one with some smokehouse flavor. I went with their bacon cheeseburger, making it a double. Here's that description from the restaurant website: Two hand-formed patties, grilled to order - with two strips of crispy bacon and two slices of Kraft American Cheese - all on a soft, sesame seed bun. I went with their "All the Way" topping option, which means the burger was to be topped with mayo, lettuce, pickles, tomatoes, grilled onions, grilled mushrooms, ketchup, mustard.... Along with my additional add-on: A-1 sauce.
So how was the burger? Lousy. I took two bites and put it down. This burger was SO over-sauced that it made the sesame seed bun totally fall-apart, soggy, wet. Whoever put the A-1 on went overboard and just drenched it. I should have suspected as much when unwrapping the burger, the wrapping being wet with A-1 (which itself seemed to be watered down and not full strength), but I really didn't think much of it until I took that first bite. The bun just fell away, I was grasping lettuce, tomato and burger in taking that second bite. The meat was seasoned well enough, the lettuce and tomato were fresh, the pickle delivered that tartness you expect, but my goodness there was no bun to hold onto! The bacon was run-of-the-mill and the grilled onion and mushrooms were under-seasoned, not bringing any real robust flavor to the party. Overall, there was nothing memorable about this burger, except how the bun fell apart.
The Five Guys Bacon Cheeseburger cost me $8.70 and gets just 2 out of 5 Bachelor on the Cheap stars. It was unremarkable and overpriced, it is NOT a repeat buy.
$pend Wisely My Friends.....