April 18, 2007

THEY LIKE YOU. WE GET IT.

Amid the tumult, chaos, sturm and drang that has been life at Casa del Ensalada, I decided the other day to wedge a trip to a new burger joint in town that everyone had been telling me to visit: Five Guys Famous Burgers and Fries on Kennedy Boulevard. (There's another location on Fowler and more coming to Carrollwood and Pinellas Park.)

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Five Guys is part of a rapidly spreading chain that is running up and down the eastern seaboard at the moment.

I took notice when my friend Ryan wrote this on his hilarious blog at Delaware Online, Pulp Culture:

Remember when I "discovered" Five Guys in Bethany Beach last summer? (Just call me Columbus.)

Well, even though they have Five Guys locations in Bear and Hockessin, I've refused to drive that far for hamburgers.

Jesus has answered my cholesterol-loving prayers -- Five Guys is coming to the Wilmington area.

I'm not a smart man, but I know when a burger joint becomes a multi-state object of obsession, I need to check it out.

So I did. With Rommie the other day. I'm so glad I did.

I mean, look at this pulchritude:


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Forget the taste for a moment. That's how a burger should look. Sloppy. Greasy. Messy. Gooey. Bun mushed and slightly askew. Burgers should look like that disheveled hottie you tried to pick up at last call in college when both of you were so drunk that neither of you could manage a vowel movement. (Not that I ever met anyone whose bun was mushed and slightly askew.)

And this next one, the bacon cheese hot dog ... that just looks like every bad decision you've ever made come to life in sandwich form.

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If loving that is wrong, I don't wanna be right.

Then again, if you love too many of those, you really ought to pre-load a Lipitor or two. Or two dozen.


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The decor is decidedly low-key. They do one thing (okay, a couple of things) and they do them really well. Want a burger? Done. Hot dog? They have your back. Grilled cheese? Gotcha. A bag of fries big enough to pin a man to the ground? Here you go.

Comfort and plush accomodations? You'll have to wait on that.

Case in point:

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They use their fresh spud and peanut oil supply as line governors in the lobby. Just walking around those bags screams "no frills" and "fresh."

How fresh?

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This fresh. Darn things have everything but a "born on" date.

That's not to say I didn't have a couple nits to pick.

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The signs all over the walls and windows announcing how great everyone thinks you are got a tad tedious.

Okay, okay. You had us at bacon cheese dog. Yes, it's cool that you're Zagat-rated. Yes, we're all so very pleased to see that Washingtonian digs you.

But does it have to be plastered everywhere?

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I didn't use the restroom, but it wouldn't have surprised me if there were signs in there as well. Maybe under the toilet lid?

Still, the customer fervor was palpable:

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What would they do? Just serve burgers and fries, of course.

Posted by Jeff at April 18, 2007 05:27 AM | TrackBack
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