The Trenchermen

We eat other people’s food.

Steak ‘n Shake (Springfield, MO)

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In the recent surge of food enthusiasm, much attention has been focused on the hamburger, America’s favorite food.  There are those who praise the fat patty, composed of carefully-calibrated mixes of meat, sometimes filled with flavor-adding ingredients.  There are others who prefer a smashed, buttery burger.  In New York, Shake Shack is the genre-defining purveyor in the latter category.  In California (and elsewhere,  now), In-n-Out Burger generally wins.  On our recent trip to Missouri, we tried the Midwest’s leading contender, Steak ‘n Shake.  In my opinion, it’s better than the rest.  (My contacts from Saint Louis agree.)

We visited what I am told is the first Springfield location:  a classic diner format with the word “Takhomasak” (take home a sack?) displayed on an awning out front.  I ordered the Original Double ‘n Cheese, which comes with two patties, American cheese, and a selection of toppings.  The patties are smashed, cooked through, and somewhat flaky.  And very greasy.  But the meat is delicious; it tastes more fresh and buttery than the  grayed-through patties you get in most other fast-food chains.  The toppings included the standard fare — ketchup, mustard, lettuce, tomato, pickles, mayo, etc. — and some exquisite others, most notably mustard relish.

Here is the Double ‘n Cheese in all its towering glory.  It is not huge, but densely packed.

One big bite in.  The mustard relish really takes it from good to great.

And here’s half of my second Double, with a splash of mustard relish and some zigs of ketchup.

And, finally, a walking shot of the interior, designed to look like a classic American diner.  It’s corny, but a lot more appealing than the manufactured feeling of most other fast-food burger chains.

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Written by trencherman

September 23, 2010 at 11:58 am

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