On our way home from horseback riding, we stopped off for a late lunch at a Five Guys.
If you're not familiar, Five Guys is basically the East Coast version of In-N-Out, which is sort of like a high-end McDonald's. The difference between Five Guys (as well as places like Nifty Fifty's and In-N-Out) versus McDonald's is that the food is actually good and the service is (usually) competent and friendly. Ask anyone who has ever lived in California what the best burgers are and 99% of the time they'll say In-N-Out. The problem with In-N-Out for most people is that they're located primarily on the West Coast. Five Guys solved that problem by copying In-N-Out (in my opinion) and spreading the idea beyond In-N-Out's original stomping grounds.
A flock of cuties munching on the free in-the-shell peanuts while waiting:
If you weren't paying too close of attention, you might not know whether you were at an In-N-Out or a Five Guys. They both have white-tile interiors with red highlights. The soda machine is all-you-can-drink (free refills). The staff is friendly and efficient. You can see the whole kitchen and all the prep. The fries are fresh-cut from whole potatoes. The biggest difference, if you can call it that, I can find is that instead of In-N-Out's food coming in a brown-cardboard box, Five Guy's food comes in a heavy brown paper bag.
My sister picking up our meal (in a paper bag):
The similarities continue with the food. Somehow, I ended up with a double-cheeseburger (I believe I ordered a regular cheeseburger), which was, at a minimum, equally good as what In-N-Out's got. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that I think that the fries might be better at Five Guys. Oh, and the peanuts are a nice bonus. (Note the jalapeños on my burger!)
Apparently kids like Five Guys' food too!
I'm kinda' mixed on the whole Five Guys' thing but I'm thinking that it's because, to me, In-N-Out is the original. On the other hand, the food is good and there's a lot more of them in a lot more places. I think In-N-Out missed their opportunity to spread across the United States since Five Guys beat them to the punch. Hmmmmm... I guess that the reality is that I'd go to whichever was closest if I were in the mood for a good burger.
Four satisfied Five Guys' customers: