A Tale of Three Burgers

24 Jul
2012
Posted in: Food, Washington
By    2 Comments

Cheeseburgers are everywhere. Good ones are rare (cooked medium). We’ve found a bunch of good burgers on the trip so far — they just might be the ultimate road food.

We were on our way to Rainier and we already knew where we’d be getting lunch as we drove out of the park: Scaleburger. Thinking about burgers made us want burgers, so we stopped at Sonic. Then after arriving in Seattle, we got a burger at Dick’s. Here are the details.

Sonic: Same Crap, Different Sign

On some level, pretty much all fast food restaurants are the same — same food, same employees, etc. Sonic tries to differentiate itself by making you eat and order in your car. This way, you can hide your shame and growing waist-line while controlling the radio and spilling crumbs and ketchup on your shirt. I ordered a hot dog. Lisa got a burger. Well, she ordered a burger. She didn’t get it until much later. See, they forgot it in their first delivery. We called into the command center and told them about their mistake. Then another car-hop came over with a burger … but it was the wrong burger, just a dried-out, cheeseless impersonator. Lisa got out of the car and tried to bring it back. There is, unfortunately, no way to do this, so we called back in from the car and after another wait got the right burger. Quite the hassle for mediocre food. I don’t foresee us ever returning to a Sonic Drive In.

High tech ordering at Sonic. Note: shirt is still stain-free.

High tech ordering at Sonic. Note: shirt is still stain-free.

Cheese stick all alone, lamenting the loss of his friends.

Cheese stick all alone, lamenting the loss of his friends.

Lisa: not impressed with her burger experience at Sonic.

Lisa: not impressed with her burger experience at Sonic.

Scaleburger: Would you like hype with that?

Scaleburger (named because it occupies an old truck weigh station) promised to be perfect. Well, Fodor’s or Frommer’s promised it’d be perfect. Unfortunately, after that review was written, Scaleburger realized they could double revenue by doubling prices. Cheap burgers, when over-priced, aren’t as good. Something changes with the cost. These were fine, but just not worth the price. Located at the western edge of Mount Rainier, there aren’t a ton of options, but we’ll skip this one in the future. I mean, over $4 for onion rings!? Insanity. Luckily for Scaleburger, there’s an endless supply of misinformed tourists passing through town.

Scaleburger: over-seasoned with anticipation.

Scaleburger: over-seasoned with anticipation.

Dick’s: Seattle’s Finest

We ended up at Dick’s around 2PM one afternoon in Seattle. The place was hopping. There were three order-taking lines. The team behind the glass was pumping out burgers and shakes and fries. Lisa and I split a burger, some fries, and a shake. All of it was delicious. All of it was cheap. Cheap in price but not quality. I can now proudly say I like Dick’s. Dick’s is delicious.

Dick's fries are some of the best ever.

Dick’s fries are some of the best ever.

Dick's cheeseburger. Tasty food, great prices.

Dick’s cheeseburger. Tasty food, great prices.

  • http://twitter.com/scottsala Scott Sala

    Good to hear Dick’s still rocks. We had one in Spokane when I was in high school, and that was THE cruising spot on Friday and Saturday nights. Glad they are consistent – cheap and good. See any muscle cars?

    • http://drivinginertia.com/ Paul David Olson

      Definitely muscle cars and a lot of work-related vans and trucks from guys taking a break in the day to grab a burger.