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Feb 9, 2009 06:02 AM

Shake Shack Fries Suck Horribly

Yo, what the heck? I really liked my first Shake Shack burger at the UWS outpost, though it lacked the good carmelized crust I'd been led to hope for. Still, great beef flavor, incredibly juicy...but the fires...THE FRIES!??! Where do I start.....clearly frozen fries from a big plastic bag, and not even very good ones. The insides were gritty, like they were made out of potato meal. And not only that, but the final insult...the fry orders were sitting out premade (I didn't notice if there were heat lamps). Does this happen in Madison Square Park?!? Insulting. I will go back for the burgers and the draft root beer, but unless they get better fries or onion rings, I'll skip the sides.


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  1. Gonna have to disagree. While they're definitely not the best fries I've had, and they are frozen (there have been many discussions about why they do this--check serious eats), the ones I've had there have been quite good--very crispy, which is always my first and foremost fry requirement. Plus, the cheese sauce is nice. Perhaps you got them on an off day?

    The burgers are phenomenal too, which is the real reason to go. The fries only have to be passable, which in my experience, they exceed.

    5 Replies
    1. re: aravenel

      yeah, I have to disagree to....the fries at SS are better than most burger places out there (love the crinckle cut) and they are not pre-made. they do big volume so they are always making them. You probably got a bad batch, it happens. Being that SS is a danny meyer place, if you asked them to replace them with hot crisp order im sure they would have immediately...I also think the UWS location turns more consistant and better stuff than the MSP SS. I think it has to do with a larger more organized kitchen. Particlularly, the fries are better at the UWS location (they tend to be crispier) than MSP...

      1. re: Cpalms

        Uh, no, the fries are, in fact, pre-made and frozen. See Ed Levine's story about the UWS location opening:

      2. re: aravenel

        You know, this is really crap excuse making by SS; I've been to plenty of burger shacks in Boston with great hand cut fries. There is no substitute. They need to be cut that day, par fried, and then fried a second time to order, and salted right after coming out of the oil. It ain't that hard! Again, the burgers are good, but I've had great burgers at Flat Patties and Uburger in Boston with real double fried fresh cut fries, and it does really add to the experience.

        1. re: tamerlanenj

          Ok and do they do the same amount of business in Boston as Shake Shack. There is probably a reason they don't make the fries fresh. Secondly, we both thought the fries were killer. Like really really good.

          Shake Shack
          Madison Ave and E 23rd St, New York, NY 10010

          1. re: dezineliz

            UBurger is one of the most popular burger places in Boston. At lunchtime the line goes out the door, and being across from Fenway, during baseball season it's a mad house before games. It's just the tiny little backwater hick town of Boston, but I think "they're too busy" at Shake Shack is a pretty lame excuse.

            Shake Shack
            Madison Ave and E 23rd St, New York, NY 10010

      3. Huh, that's weird. I really like the fries at Shake Shack.

        4 Replies
          1. re: MMRuth

            Me 3. Love 'em!! Crispy outside, melt in your mouth inside, never greasy.

          2. re: Peter Cuce

            Me too me too!! esp with the sauce...

            1. re: kelea

              SS fries + their sauce = really wonderful time. they taste so good, and taste so unhealthy, but so good nevertheless.

          3. I'm not a huge fan of crinkle cut, and while the Shack fries are not bad, I usually save room for custard instead!

            1. I still like the fries... but the fries a year ago before the no trans fat switch may have been the best burger joint fries ever

              1. Sounds like you need some support on this issue. Contrary to the other posters on this thread, I agree with you 100%. I've never liked the fries at Shake Shack. I've tried them many times thinking that I may have gotten a bad batch. But every time I tried it, my view remained exactly the same. I think the freezing may have something to do with it, but I don't think that's the main reason for my view. I've had frozen fries before that were quite delicious. For me, it's the type of potato. I like my fries really crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. Shake Shack uses yukon gold potatoes. While I love yukon golds for mashed potatoes, I don't think they're the best potato for a french fry as I prefer my fries fluffy as opposed to creamy. And I think it's difficult to fry a yukon gold french fry so that it's super crispy on the outside because these potatoes contain more sugar than russets as they'll burn.

                In terms of the fries sitting out premade, I have encountered that a couple of times. I've only been to the Madison Park one. Sometimes the service there has been kind of slow and frustrating. Once I saw my burger sit out for like 15 minutes before I received it. I was kind of hoping it wasn't my burger, but unfortunately it was.

                I think the burgers at Shake Shack are good (especially the double stack). But I'd rather get my fries at McDonalds.