Shake Shack is one of the 20 most important restaurants in America.
That’s not me talking. The declaration comes from Bon Appetit.
The New York-based chain is right there at #16 — nestled between Seattle’s The Walrus and the Carpenter (?!) and Austin’s Franklin Barbecue. #1 is Momofuku.
The magazine notes that these are not the nation’s best restaurants. They’re the ones that “define how we eat out.”
Here, Bon Appetit-ically speaking, is how we eat out at Shake Shack:
Danny Meyer didn’t just redefine the fast-food experience — the meal, the look, the level of service — he created a damn good burger. With its custom-blend patty (and nostalgic nods like gooey American cheese and a soft bun), it is a burger worth standing in line for—and you will likely have to, for up to an hour.
Like all fast-food chains, consistency is king, but here that means beef supplied by meat guru Pat La Frieda; cool, urban-chic spaces by architecture firm SITE; and a definitive menu, though they do tailor the “concretes” (frozen custard with mix-ins) to each location. (We’ll have the “Fudge-eddaboudit.”)
In under a decade, they’ve grown to 22 locations, from NYC to Dubai. Look for 5 more in 2013, including Istanbul.
Right now, there are only 2 Shake Shacks in Connecticut. Ours opened in 2011; New Haven followed last year.
Five Guys did not make the cut.
What are they — chopped liver?