You may have heard of Five Guys Burgers and Fries. I had heard that they were a similar concept to my beloved In-N-Out burger -- fast-food burgers made from fresh, never-frozen beef and freshly-cut french fries. Unlike In-N-Out, however, Five Guys has locations all over the country.
Now, I had been to Five Guys before the genesis of this blog -- they have a location in Edina to which I made a trip a while back. And, frankly, I was disappointed. BUT...my entire experience was tainted by shattered expectations: I was looking forward to a cheeseburger and a shake...but Five Guys doesn't offer shakes. Having to settle for a soda ruined the whole experience for me on that day. So when a new Five Guys location opened up in Dinkytown, I decided to return with a more open mind and attempt to give an unbiased review.
So, I made a lunch date with a friend and we headed to the Five Guys. I ordered my burger: a cheeseburger with lettuce, tomato, grilled onions, mayo, and ketchup. Now, at Five Guys, a regular burger is actually a double, with two meat patties (along with two slices of cheese for the cheeseburger) -- if you want a single burger, you'd order the so-called "little burger". With a side of fries and a soft drink, the total was about $10 -- the cheeseburger alone was $5. As an aside, a regular order of fries is a LOT of fries -- most normal people could split an order with no issues.
The burger arrived looking quite nice -- the two slices of American cheese, melted well, were between the two patties, the lettuce and tomato were placed on top with the nicely grilled onions below. The sesame bun was toasted nicely too. Cutting through showed the well-done meat, as expected and as clearly stated on the menu.
And you know what? This is actually a pretty good burger. The meat was seasoned decently, though perhaps a little unevenly, and having the cheese in between the two patties helped make sure that each bite had nice flavor. Certainly better than I had remembered. On the other hand, the tomato was bland, the lettuce was iceberg (meh), and the bun, though fresh, was not particularly flavorful. Still, overall, a really good fast-food burger, and I'm glad there's a location within easy walking distance of my office!
Does it best In-N-Out? The burgers are comparable in taste, and a Five Guys cheeseburger is a little bigger than an In-N-Out Double Double. Then again, Five Guys is a bit more expensive ($5 vs. $3). I'm personally still partial to In-N-Out (possibly due to nostalgia and pre-existing bias), but if you prefer Five Guys I won't look down on you.
Five Guys Burgers and Fries
1413 Fourth St. SE
Minneapolis, MN 55414
P.S. I know this isn't a french fry blog, but Five Guys' fries are hands-down better than In-N-Out's.