Is Shake Shack All That?


From Baldwin Park California, the closest Shake Shack is located 17 miles away at 400 W 8th St, Los Angeles. Founded in July 2004, in the city of New York, Shake Shack was originally a hot dog stand. It has now sprouted into a franchise that serves burgers, hot dogs, frozen custard, shakes, beer, wine and more. Shake Shack and In-N-Out are constantly being compared, and after finally trying it for the first time, I’m here to settle the debate.

The first thing that caught my attention is the vast variety of menu items. This menu of theirs spreads across an entire wall, but this amazing abundance of choices comes with a cost, the absence of grouped meals. At Shake Shack, one must order each individual item instead of ordering a grouped meal that usually contains the basics. Yes one might say, “What’s so hard about asking for a burger, fries, and a drink,” but for me, this caught me by surprise and I found this a tad bit overwhelming, especially for it being my first time.

One can come at these diverse options from two perspectives:

The grand spectrum of choices could start curiosity from the customer standpoint, creating a greater turnover rate of the customer wanting to come back and try more items. This in turn can attract a wider variety of customers with their wide variety of choices. The ability to not have to abide the pre-planned course and create your own combination brings character to anyone’s meal. However, one might see the amount of options unnecessarily extra.

As with In-N-Out, their options are few but mighty, they are simple and to the point. This creates a quick and easy decision experience for the customer. In-N-Out is known to give the people what they want, a burger, fries, and a drink, nothing more, nothing less. This lack of diversity, sadly, pushes away hungry customers who are looking for more than just the basics.

When I visited Shake Shack, I only tried their burger and fries to get a fair comparison with In-N-Out. Once I picked up my order I noticed that the portion size was smaller than I expected, especially after paying more than what I would usually pay for such a meal. Just a burger and fries (no drink) cost a bit over 9 dollars, whereas a burger, drink and fries at In-N-Out cost just about 6 dollars.

The burger was small but light. I wasn’t pleased at first but after completing my meal, I was comfortably full. This can vary from person to person, but I was content that I didn’t feel the need to sleep after munching on a burger. The meat of the burger melted in my mouth and really packed a nice punch in flavortown. The buns were light and and also airy, making it easy to consume. The crinkle cut fries were less greasy than In-N-Out’s, but I prefer In-N-Out solely due to the fact that their fries are saltier (my preference).

Overall, if I’m willing to fork up a few extra bucks for a meal then I’d definitely visit Shake Shack more often. But nothing is better than getting quality food at an affordable price.

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