Some burger analytics:
Social audience measurement platform PeekAnalytics has crafted an interactive map that utilizes Twitter data to display the 20 most popular burger chains in the country.
The trends are surprising.
PeekAnalytics tapped into millions of tweets in more than 1,000 cities to come up with the map.
Highlights of note:
· McDonald’s was the most-tweeted-about, followed by Wendy’s and Burger King.
Of chain burger joints at which I’ve eaten, In-N-Out is the best.
People dog McDonald’s, but let me tell you this: in the summertime the place is cool, in the winter it’s warm, and the bathrooms are almost always clean, and if you really gotta go, they have spacious stalls with dead-bolt doors (and, for my married homies out there, I’m sure you already know that the stalls have baby-changing stations in the men’s room). As a person who spends a great deal of time driving, this is key, to say nothing of the fact that most (perhaps all?) of the American locations now have free wifi. Even when I’ve not bought anything and squatted (dat pun /brex) for an hour, I’ve never been asked by management to leave.
Another interesting fact about McDonald’s: with the exception of Sonic, Diet Coke – my soda of choice – tastes better nowhere else.
Ranking the quality of burgers of chains, my top 3 are:
- In-N-Out – pricey, but of a very high quality for a chain;
- Whataburger – pound-for-pound, the best chain burger there is for the price;
- Sonic – at Whataburger tier, plus they have both half-price drinks at Happy Hour, and their tater tots are delicious;
McDonald’s is notorious for its fries, which no one can touch. They’re just better. Years ago (late 90s as I recall) The New Yorker had a great essay about the production process the Arches submit their fries to, and it is/was astonishing. The Arches produce fries and milkshakes that are unbeatable in the genre. Burger King’s Whopper is probably better than McDonald’s serious burgers, but BK tends to be less clean and their bathrooms are hit-and-miss. Their fries are crispier, but they’re not nearly so flavorful as Arches.
I don’t eat there often, but Carl’s Junior, which bought out Hardees, has made (dat grammar /brex) an assault on the hill of American burger joints. They have some wild offerings, and they are high-calorie, high-carb, high-sodium and quite good. Their fries suck, imho.
Wendy’s sucks – small burgers, fat fries that lack flavor, and yeah, they suck.
Five Guys (or is it 5 Guys?) is a direct competitor to In-N-Out in the large-scale, boutique burger joint, and they are overpriced, crappy burger, decent fries, but not worth the money.
There are three burgers that I consider the best, and I’m talking under $10 and just a general burger: Snuffers in Dallas-TX; the convenience store in Kim-CO’s burger (Kim is in remote SE Colorado, and if you happen to wander through there, try their burger); and the burger they make a Freeman’s Ranch General Store outside of Creede-CO, arguably the best burger on the planet. I’m biased, obv.