THE NYC FRIES GUIDE
Fries, frites, Frieten, chips, patatas fritas or Freedom Fries are everywhere, because let’s face it: everybody loves them. They’re good with any kind of meat, drink and are always craved. We eat them on sexy dates and when we’re hung over.
They’re also the trigger of an endless debate: thick or thin? Crispy or meaty? McDonald’s or Burger King? Everyone has their favourite, but one thing we can all agree on is that there’s nothing more disappointing than disappointing fries.
Here’s our guide to the fries served in 6 of NYC’s best burger chains.
Five Guys $2,49
Five Guys is an internationally known chain also found in London that serves some pretty solid fries. The first thing we noticed was that extra handful of fries, which lay in the brown bag, as it didn’t fit into the paper cup. We began to salivate. Is this some kind of marketing strategy to make them look generous? We’re not complaining.
Their fries have that trendy “natural fresh cut” – which means that they’re cut daily in house. They also keep the potato skin on, for the “natural” looking bit.
Five Guys’ fries have a thick cut, which is usually not our favourite but these were pretty tasty and salty. Although we’ve been told that when it gets busy, their fries pay the price and aren’t as tasty. Consistency clearly doesn’t rhyme with fresh-cut fries.
Shake Shack $2,95
In 2013, Shake Shack announced that they would replace the chain’s standard frozen crinkle-cut fries with fresh-cut ones and in August 2014 – by popular demand – the frozen fries came back on the chain’s menu. You should know though that their crinkle cut potatoes are 100% free of Artificial Trans Fats and have 25% less fat than average fries (so don’t feel too guilty if you decide to order an extra portion to share).
While their shape is unusual, we absolutely adored their taste and crispiness. They also have cheese fries ($3,95), which is always a good idea.
It’s pretty crazy that what started off as a food cart in Madison Square in 2001 is now a multinational chain located in the US, Russia, London and in the Middle East. #WatchOutMcDonalds
Umami Burger $3
When we first set eyes on Umami’s menu, we wondered whether whoever wrote it recently discovered truffle and became obsessed with it. The menu includes a truffled beet salad, two truffle burgers and of course some truffle fries. We decided to go with one portion of regular fries and another one with truffle cheese and truffle salt ($5,5) #YOLO.
Their extra thin cut reminded us of those well-known fast food fries we (shamefully) love.
The taste of truffle was predominant and wasn’t too bad but we were more into the regular fries until we dipped them into their homemade ketchup, which also had a truffle kick (!!).
Don’t get us wrong, truffle is right up our alley (you probably noticed if you follow us on Instagram), but mixing all these truffle aromas to burgers and fries seemed like a truffle overload.
5 Napkin Burger $3,50
This chic sit-down burger chain serves gourmet burgers AND sushi, which makes no sense, just like their brand name.
Their fries reminded us of the Five Guys ones but with a slightly thinner cut. #NoComplaints
Bareburger is an organic burger chain, which serves natural “DIY” burgers. They also serve organic, peel-on, hand-cut fries that are pre-cooked in soy oil and finished in peanut oil. Sounds lovely, doesn’t it?
The basket of fries is much bigger than what is usually served in burger chains (but also happens to be more expensive). Unfortunately that was the only plus side: the thick cut made them slightly flaccid and salt was clearly lacking (we know too much salt is bad for you but “organic” shouldn’t mean “tasteless”).
Extra point for their homemade curry ketchup and habanero chipotle mayo, though!
The Counter Burger has restaurants everywhere from Ireland to Dubai and LA. Their aim is to impress us with innovative burgers (they also have Muffuleta!!) and an extensive fries menu.
What impressed us most was their huge portion of “shoestring fries” (although we once again paid the price for extra fries). Since we like our fries extra thin and crispy, The Counter Burger definitely seduced us.