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Toliver

In-N-Out Burger

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I couldn't find an existing topic dedicated to the fast food chain so I thought I would start one with some good news for Texans:

In-N-Out Goin' to Texas

The Lone Star State is about to go Animal Style. In-N-Out Burger, the beloved West Coast chain famous for its secret menu of burger preparations, is set to open at least eight Texas branches, the Orange County Register reports.

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do they finally offer bacon? A fast food burger has to have bacon on it! Only time I went there they did not have it (as I was sort of rudely made aware of) and "secret" menus are a bit stupid IMO. Might have just been that one location? Never went back to one, so I don't know. In Texas they better hire people with a nicer attitude though! :laugh:

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We lived in California for several years, and one son still lives there. I'll admit that In-N-Out is my favorite large hamburger chain. I know the family has been squabbling for some time over whether or not to expand the chain out of California farther than the few non-California locations it already has.

Many folks believe that one reason the In-N-Out quality has remained so high over the years is that every store is owned by the company - not franchised.

Will be interesting to see what happens as it expands into other states.

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do they finally offer bacon? A fast food burger has to have bacon on it! Only time I went there they did not have it (as I was sort of rudely made aware of) and "secret" menus are a bit stupid IMO. Might have just been that one location? Never went back to one, so I don't know. In Texas they better hire people with a nicer attitude though! :laugh:

I have to say that despite the fact we've eaten at many, many locations over the years, I've never run into any employee with a bad attitude. I suppose that can happen anywhere, though.

And In-N-Out has been one of the nation's most successful hamburger operations for over 50 years, if memory serves. A good run by anybody's standards.

Nobody in my family puts bacon on hamburgers. I know some folks do, but the fact that In-N-Out doesn't seems not to have hurt them one tiny little bit.

So I'm thrilled to death that they're expanding. We'll support them because we don't give a flying flip what they don't do.

What they do do works perfectly for us.

So my advice to them would be don't change a thing.

And get here as fast as you can.

___________________


Edited by Jaymes (log)

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Next time you go, spend a few minutes watching the workers do their jobs. The space is designed with a level of care and attention that is remarkable. I learned more about designing a bar for quality cocktail making than I have in most bars.

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I would think it was an isolated event, as was hopefully the near fight between a guy in a souped and jacked up truck and some kids in a sedan behind me. In a very nice and expensive area actually, San Ramon or Danville or where it is.

But I like bacon on my burger, so I never went back, as they don't have what I want. The burger I got was rather bland, but I did not know about their "secrets" that aren't on the menu (?). I've never been inside one, I liked that they had two drive through windows and managed where you get your order, that seemed to speed up (the very long and slow) like a bit. And that I did not have to talk to some quacky speaker, but a person with some wireless tablet thing took my order.

I won't be back, if I eat fast food 5 times a year it's a lot, so it doesn't matter to me, there are others that serve what I like to get.

We're actually gonna get one more, against the protest of all the people that live around that empty lot, and I know plenty people that love them - to each their own :laugh:

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I remember my first one. Road trip with a group of women who had known one another forever and the birthday girl insisted we stop there. Picture a bunch of grown women sitting in the parking lot and groaning.

I currently live quite close to one and smell it and see the crowds almost daily, yet have not bothered to stop in. I do not like the fries (too soft). If I was super hungry though, and this was the fast food gotta eat in the car option for a burger, I would pick In-N-Out.

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Here is some older input from the California Dining forum.

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I do not like the fries (too soft). If I was super hungry though, and this was the fast food gotta eat in the car option for a burger, I would pick In-N-Out.

In-N-Out is perhaps not as good as some independent burger joints can be, but when it comes to a large fast-food chain, to me, it wins pretty handily.

But I am perhaps different from many folks in that I like just a plain, old-fashioned burger. I want good bread, one juicy tasty hamburger patty and fresh, fresh, fresh cold and crunchy veggies - onions, pickles, lettuce, tomatoes. I don't even get cheese on my burgers. I love cheese but, to me, on a burger, it interferes with what I see as a perfect flavor balance of the bread, one meat patty, veggies.

I don't much care for fries and, although I might eat one or two of yours, I never order them, so they don't figure at all in my decision as to who among the commercial chains has the best hamburger.


Edited by Jaymes (log)

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Their burgers are okay.. certainly if your standard is McDonalds or Carl's Jr they are going to seem like a 4 star meal... but having lived in L.A. for 25 years I think I might have specifically craved an In n Out burger a couple of times.

The local Greek owned chains that operate through out ghetto L.A. and the adjacent suburbs (Dino's, Troy's, Astros etc.,) were so far superior (cheaper & faster) than In N'Out... way overrated.

Set your expectations low.

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Their burgers are okay.. certainly if your standard is McDonalds or Carl's Jr they are going to seem like a 4 star meal... but having lived in L.A. for 25 years I think I might have specifically craved an In n Out burger a couple of times.

The local Greek owned chains that operate through out ghetto L.A. and the adjacent suburbs (Dino's, Troy's, Astros etc.,) were so far superior (cheaper & faster) than In N'Out... way overrated.

Set your expectations low.

But those are places you have to go into. Pretty fast, but not drive through fast food. Kind of a fast food/diner meld. Perhaps I am mistaken.

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@ Heidi

You are right.. no drive through... not so much diner though typically you place an order & pay at one window.. go find a table, and they dispatch your trays from a different window / counter... order usually ready in less than 5 minutes.

Me personally I can't see the benefit of drive thru convenience outweigh the superior taste at the Greek ghetto burger joints... except maybe on a really rainy day with a full parking lot etc.,

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@ Heidi have you been to Dino's? I grew up a short walk away from the one at Main St & Griffin Ave in the 90031 (Lincoln Heights)... people come from downtown in their uppity office clothing at lunch to eat there.. I can't imagine any of those office workers doing the same drive for In N Out.

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The drive through at the I&O I see here doesn't seem that great of an idea, the lines are usually very long, going down the road. And since they do make everything on the spot (as far as I know) it takes a while to get your order. It's probably a lot faster to park and get your take out order at the counter.

I'd love to have a greek influenced burger place, that sounds interesting! Or is it just Greek owned, but no culinary influence?

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In-n-Out's move into the Dallas area is HUGE news here. It was rumored for a long, long time. IT finally came true. Since the initial announcement long ago, the buzz has only gotten stronger as they announced locations. It grows stronger as construction has begun on some of the locations. People taking pictures of the sites and posting to Facebook and Twitter and what not. At first, all of the locations listed where kinda far from me. I don't normally get to those areas anyway, but I vowed to stay far away from those areas right when they open. I suspect there will be HUGE lines I've seen the kinds of drive thru lines the locations in So Cal can generate. And those places have been around for years!

But in the most recent new stories, I learned of a location planed just a couple of miles away. It's still not in an area I traverse through regularly, but it's close enough to be somewhat dangerous.

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The drive through at the I&O I see here doesn't seem that great of an idea, the lines are usually very long, going down the road. And since they do make everything on the spot (as far as I know) it takes a while to get your order. It's probably a lot faster to park and get your take out order at the counter.

I'd love to have a greek influenced burger place, that sounds interesting! Or is it just Greek owned, but no culinary influence?

Oliver... I will not speak for Manhattan, NYers should chime in... I have noticed a huge number of diners there owned by Greeks and Italians... I vaguely remember some Greek influences but I've only been a half dozen times.

In L.A. the Greek influences are certainly there... the burger patties are made by a particular Greek owned food service company that supplies most of the burger joints they come pre-seasoned with an addictive spice blend that also speeds up the charring process (I can detect garlic extract, greek oregano & paprika among other flavors).

This same company provides preseasoned, pre-cooked Gyro meat that just gets griddled up for gyros, as well as well above average precooked Pastrami meat that just needs to be sweated... and many of the Greek joints will ofter monstrosities (in a good way) that include Gyro or Pastrami on the burger. Other things they provide are pepperoncini, these little pickled spicy yellow chiles (not part of the Mexican lexicon), as well as pickled cucumbers.

Finally... 100% of the cooks at these Greek joints have been Mexicans or Central Americans for at least 20 years now... and I have watched as these burger joints have added Mexican dishes... Dino's in particular is well known for its Sinaloa style Chicken (Whole chicken marinaded in a combination of citrus & garlic juices, black pepper, Mex Oregano, a little cumin.. that is "split" and grilled over the same smoky burger crud crusted grails etc.,)

I could go on & on about the various Greek, Mexican & other influences that have crept into their basic Burger & Fries offering.. these places have huge menus. To be clear... the ingredients are not fancy... they are better, more local more artisinal than Sysco institution crap but we are not talking wagyu beef, special rolls, homemade aoilis etc.,... these places just serve thousands of burgers every day... they have the secret to seriously juicy, charred patties full of smokey flavors.. good slathering of thousand island, onions, tomato, lettuce, yellow cheese, really fresh bread... the fries are pretty bad at most of these places (typical Greek style fries)... but they really now how to make Chili Fries... at Dino's they are so busy at lunch time that they just have their entire grill space packed with patties at every second... at the end of the lunch rush they take leftover patties, collect burger juices they trap under the grills... make a roux with ground Anchos, Californias & Arbol chiles and the juices... then they finely chop up the leftover burgers, blend them with the roux, water & salt... cook that down. The fries are swimming in this delectable chile studded with lots chopped onion & yellow cheese... damn they are delicious!

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We're actually gonna get one more, against the protest of all the people that live around that empty lot, and I know plenty people that love them - to each their own :laugh:

We're actually getting two... the one in the contested location you mentioned, and another further down the road.

I like In-N-Out, but I'm also originally from the San Gabriel Valley, so go figure.

Have you tried The Habit or The Counter in downtown WC yet? Both get good reviews.

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Whenever I&O comes up as a topic everyone has a comparison spot they go to, usually a small one place operation. Nothing wrong with that but when I want a burger near Paso Robles, or a number of other cities, I can go to I&O, not drive to LA or SF. They're quality consistent, fresh and the staff is extremely pleasant.

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What he said. And for those of us on the East Coast, an array of good burger joints from which to choose is enviable.

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What he said. And for those of us on the East Coast, an array of good burger joints from which to choose is enviable.

Chris, I gotta disagree.

In general, a West-coast burger beats an East-coast burger hands down. Sure, you have Five Guys, and any number of mom-and-pop roadside stands that do a good job. But on the West coast, In-N-Out is the fallback position when a Tommy's isn't close at hand. And there are just as many roadside stands as the East coast. And because they have to compete with In-N-Out, Fatburger and Tommy's, they really "bring it."

Same thing can be said for East-coast pizza. In general, a better pie is going to be had nearer to the Atlantic. Sure, there is some truly excellent pizza on the West coast. (Particularly around Portland.) But in general, the pizza is better on the East coast because the competition is more fierce.

(Don't even get me going about fried chicken. I have YET to find a decent chicken shack here on the left coast. I'll put my local Florida gas station chicken against anything the West has to offer.)

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I'll probably get stoned for this but I just don't get all the In-N-Out love. I ate at the big one in Vegas off Tropicana once and it was the worst fast food I've ever eaten. The burger was simply terrible, I threw all but one bite away, the fries were soggy and greasy and for this I got the privilege of waiting 25 minutes for my food. Five Guys is another "I don't get" - expensive dry cooked-to-death burgers and the worst fries in existence - soggy, undercooked and swimming in grease. Any of the national chains such as McDonald's or Wendy's are far superior to either I-N-O or 5 Guys yet praise abounds.

Please enlighten me as to what I'm not seeing.

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I've had consistently fresh, well-prepared, and tasty burgers and fries at the relatively few In-n-Outs I've been to over the years. Like any chain, I'm sure that there are stinkers, and it sounds like the LV place was a stinker. And, really, if you waited 25 minutes for food at an In-n-Out, something is wrong.

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I'll agree with Chris on his take. The fries are consistently being sliced, cooked and served w/o any sitting under a heat lamp. The staff at all I've been to are exceptional with an upbeat attitude and a willing smile, even when the place is in the weeds. I don't usually judge service or quality until after a few try's. I go alone since the spousal unit blames I & O for a bout of food poisoning. The source is still a debatable issue in our household.

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