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Fast Food French Fries


Toliver
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McDonald's french fries used to be lengendary in their beefy goodness.

To this day my brother waxes poetic over how good their fries used to be.

Used to be.

Past tense.

Well, they ain't what they used to be. The same could be said of me, I suppose. :wink:

The last batch of McDonald's french fries I had just weren't that good. The fries were thin and not very long (what's up with all the short fries? They're not as easy to handle when dipping them in ketchup). I thought the last bunch of french fries I'd had at Wendy's were better. Wendy's fries were thicker, potato-ier and most were lengthier. Hmmm, perhaps size does matter. :laugh: They were a little under done, though, and needed to be crispier.

You either love or hate Rally's french fries. I'm in the "Love 'em" camp. They're battered & seasoned fries and unlike most of the other fast food restaurants. But they're a small franchise and perhaps they shouldn't be brought into this discussion.

I'm not a big fan of Jack-in-the-Box french fries. Their regular fries are just plain bad. They had a big PR campaign about their new "Natural Cut Fries" (meaning they left the peels on the ends of the fries) but they should have tried a new recipe instead. They also serve Curly Fries and Bacon Cheddar Potato Wedges that I can't comment on since I haven't sampled either version.

Sonic Drive-In serves a sort of tater tots as well as regular fries. The tots could be crispier and are quite potato-ey in flavor, but I'm not a big fan of the flavor of their frying oil.

The french fries at In & Out Burger are really bad, IMHO. They're always limp, undercooked little potato worms. Okay, they're fresh cut, but they still taste bad.

So, what are your favorite fast food french fries? Which ones do you despise?

 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

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If you go to In-n-Out again, order your fries "Well" or "Extra-Well". They taste an order of magnitude better than the normal, flaccid fries that I hated. (While you're at it, get them animal style if you're into getting a coronary at some point in your life)

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Down here in the South, we have What-A-Burger... Their fries are FAR superior to any of the national chains. I'm sure they are frozen, but they just seem much less "processed" than the other places.

Every couple of weeks, I cave into my craving for What-A-Burger fries. I get the What-A-Burger Jr. meal... a little burger and a smal carton of fries.

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I like Rally's fries a lot... excellent hangover cure. I once had a summer intern that was really stressing out and on the verge of quitting... I took him to Rally's and the french fries made him all better.

The fry-cook at my nearby In-N-Out where I used to live in Phoenix must have been sleepy, because my fries were always nicely crispy. Not too much, but just enough. Sadly, I no longer live in the In-N-Out zone to try another location.

Of the big chains, I'd have to agree that Wendy's are the best - I think they fry them a little longer than McD's because you don't get as many flaccid fries at Wendy's. And they hold salt well.

Burger King's are heinous pieces of styrofoam (last time I checked... I think it's been over 10 years since I've been in a BK... those King ads are just too disturbing).

...wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile. --Alexander Pope

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Down here in the South, we have What-A-Burger...  Their fries are FAR superior to any of the national chains.    I'm sure they are frozen, but they just seem much less "processed" than the other places.

Every couple of weeks, I cave into my craving for What-A-Burger fries.  I get the What-A-Burger Jr. meal...  a little burger and a smal carton of fries.

Gotta second the love for Texas' own Whataburger. They're always crisp and hot and they are real (yes frozen, but not the "mutant" fries that McDonalds has been using for years).

Like onrushpam, I get that Whataburger craving that can only be satisfied with a number one with grilled jalapeños, fries and a Dr. Pepper.

Gear nerd and hash slinger

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Five Guys (located mostly in the mid-Atlantic, centered around DC) has excellent fries. They make a big deal about them being fresh, and even say where each day's potatoes come from. The latter strikes me as an odd blend of fast food and hoity-toity artisanal preciousness... but it works!

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Five Guys (located mostly in the mid-Atlantic, centered around DC) has excellent fries.  They make a big deal about them being fresh, and even say where each day's potatoes come from.  The latter strikes me as an odd blend of fast food and hoity-toity artisanal preciousness... but it works!

Fries must be a pretty personal thing: I don't like Five Guys fries at all. Bland, undercooked, meh. Burger King changed their fries a few years back (must be going on a decade now, I guess)---they are at least better than they were, and are consistently crispy. I am also partial to Arby's homestyle fries. Of course, this is all coming from a guy who thinks the frozen Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Crinkle Fries are awesome...

Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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I like Rally's fries a lot... excellent hangover cure. I once had a summer intern that was really stressing out and on the verge of quitting... I took him to Rally's and the french fries made him all better.

The fry-cook at my nearby In-N-Out where I used to live in Phoenix must have been sleepy, because my fries were always nicely crispy.  Not too much, but just enough.  Sadly, I no longer live in the In-N-Out zone to try another location.

Of the big chains, I'd have to agree that Wendy's are the best - I think they fry them a little longer than McD's because you don't get as many flaccid fries at Wendy's.  And they hold salt well.

Burger King's are heinous pieces of styrofoam (last time I checked... I think it's been over 10 years since I've been in a BK... those King ads are just too disturbing).

Down here in Florida, we have Checkers, which is part of Rally's I belive. Good batter dipped crunchy fries. Yummy!

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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i don't east fast-food too often, but my favorite fries would have to be both wendy's and also arby's spicy curly fries (do they even still have them?? shows you how long it has been since i've eaten there...).

least favorite are definitely mcdonalds (although when i was a kid, they were my favorite) - they have changed over the years and are now long, limp, and overly salty (for my taste, at least).

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i don't east fast-food too often, but my favorite fries would have to be both wendy's and also arby's spicy curly fries (do they even still have them?? shows you how long it has been since i've eaten there...).

least favorite are definitely mcdonalds (although when i was a kid, they were my favorite) - they have changed over the years and are now long, limp, and overly salty (for my taste, at least).

In my opinion, the key to getting the proper McD's fry experience is to get them when they are as fresh and hot as possible. Lunch rush seems to be a good time. They degrade so quickly over time, I think they are inedible after 5-10 minutes post-frying. But right after, if you get a good batch? Hell, yes!

Edited by Chris Hennes (log)

Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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In my opinion, the key to getting the proper McD's fry experience is to get them when they are as fresh and hot as possible. Lunch rush seems to be a good time. They degrade so quickly over time, I think they are inedible after 5-10 minutes post-frying. But right after, if you get a good batch? Hell, yes!

To force a fresh & hot fry at McDonald's, ask for an order without salt.

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I'm not a huge fan of fries in general, they're filler, pretty much, but Checker's fries are damn good. About the only fast food place I'll actively seek them out. When I was younger, an order of chili-cheese fries and a banana milkshake from Checkers would be the perfect end to a night of partying Down the Shore.

Wendy's are passably good, I'm inspired to nibble at more than one. I don't order them, though, I just eat a few of my son's.

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By chance, does anyone here remember the french fries they sold at Palisades Amusement Park? THEY were the undisputable BEST that I've ever had! Fresh potatos, Wesson oil, salt and malt vinegar. The things dreams are made of!

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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Up north we have Goodtimes which has the same or similar fries as Checkers, to me the are always soggy and never salted right but on occasion are good. Wendys at least up here puts almost no salt on the fries and they tend to be soggy I think they just dont hold very well. The local favorite would probably be Big Boy (everyone dips them in gravy) but I find them soggy as well, which reminds me of all fries in Canada. I personally like Arby's curly fries or McDonalds if they are fresh. Taco Johns potato ole's are awesome, great seasoning and usually consistent.

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In'n'Out fries hlocally are generally very dried out and horrible.

Carl's Jr makes adequate fries.

I like Jack's new fries, hated their old pureed version.

McD's fries are too skinny.

"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

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McD's fries fried in tallow. They were heaven. As a kid that was the only thing I would eat there except for the once in a very great while fillet o' fish; no cheese or sauce.

For me In-N-Out fries suck. While they are the only chain fast food burger I will eat (double meat, no cheese, grilled onion), I not thrilled with their fries. Ordering them well done is a thin improvement.

My favorite fast food fries are Rally's. Love that bit of spicy batter, no ketchup needed. Fortunately there is one just down the street from In-N-Out. Best of both worlds.

There is a Greek burger stand near my house that also does a good french fry. He has a seasoning blend that he sprinkles on them just out of the oil. With a side of cocktail sauce or Tzatziki they are a meal. But I consider Greek burger joints a class unto themselves. They are mostly independent and can be very good to very bad.

Edited by Susie Q (log)
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There is an independent fast food joint on Long Island that is known for their fries above all else- it is called All-American and it's located in Massapequa. Here is a little tease:

gallery_21237_2037_26679.jpg

They are the real deal, hand cut and twice fried, and the kicker is that they're cheap (the portion in the photo was a buck and change.) I've had the fries at one of our local Five Guys, and for all of the hype and money they just didn't compare to good old All-American.

For chain fast food fries I'd also have to go with Nathan's- well done, please.

aka Michael

Chi mangia bene, vive bene!

"...And bring us the finest food you've got, stuffed with the second finest."

"Excellent, sir. Lobster stuffed with tacos."

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I like Rally's fries a lot... excellent hangover cure. I once had a summer intern that was really stressing out and on the verge of quitting... I took him to Rally's and the french fries made him all better.

The fry-cook at my nearby In-N-Out where I used to live in Phoenix must have been sleepy, because my fries were always nicely crispy.  Not too much, but just enough.  Sadly, I no longer live in the In-N-Out zone to try another location.

Of the big chains, I'd have to agree that Wendy's are the best - I think they fry them a little longer than McD's because you don't get as many flaccid fries at Wendy's.  And they hold salt well.

Burger King's are heinous pieces of styrofoam (last time I checked... I think it's been over 10 years since I've been in a BK... those King ads are just too disturbing).

Down here in Florida, we have Checkers, which is part of Rally's I belive. Good batter dipped crunchy fries. Yummy!

OOOOhhhhhh i love checkers fries and a big cup of their milkshakes!!!!!!

Everytime we are down there we have to stop and get them . I used to go to school in baytown and saw and old checkers so i was hoping they would have them ...no such luck. They do sell them frozen at walmart .Is probably the only frozen prepackaged food you'll find in our freezer.We dip it in peanut sambal hmmmmmmm.

Of course the best frieten (fries) i had was in holland.

Edited by kaneel (log)
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I always thought Arby's fries were pretty respectable. Then again, I'm not exactly a fry aficionado.

At the age of six I wanted to be a cook. At seven I wanted to be Napoleon. And my ambition has been growing steadily ever since. ‐ Salvador Dali

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A Salt and a Battery on 2nd Ave in NYC makes a good English chip. You can pair it with a deep-fried Twinkie.

Not fast food, but I love the fries at Les Halles. They make em just right.

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