However. This is a fantastic hamburger. The bun is soft and warmed, the meat is highly seasoned and of high quality, crisp lettuce, sweet and perfectly ripe tomato, well-melted slice of American cheese. And God knows what they put in Shack sauce, but it’s certainly a keeper.
My hot dog-loving companion, who has had a frank in most corners of New York City, gave the thumbs up. "While not the best hot dog of my career, in warmer weather it would certainly have been worth the wait." she reports. "The frank was substantial and tasty, 100% pure Vienna beef, but the ketchuped onions had their typical 'soggying' effect."
And perhaps most importantly: "you have to feel good about a major portion of your New York lunch coming in under $3."
Being from Chicago myself, I’d like to point out their offering of Chicago-style dogs, “dragged through the garden” with the usual Windy City protocol of onions, relish, pickle, sliced tomato, mustard, optional hot pepper, poppyseed bun, NO ketchup if you’re a purist, and the secret ingredient, celery salt. I have yet to find this anywhere else in the city.
Our cheese fries were the fun wavy crinkly kind, had solid potato flavor, and the cheese actually tasted like it was once cheese (while still maintaining that lovely processed taste that just makes sense in this setting).
Worth the wait? Considering the whole trek took an hour-and-a-half and I was late to work? Barely. But the crowds will hopefuly dissipate as the season gets on, and when the weather is warm you could actually enjoy a frozen custard shake without fearing hypothermia. They also have what I’ve heard is a tasty ‘shroom burger for vegetarians. The people who run this place are incredibly friendly and they really care about the food they make: As they declare both as philosophy and apology, “this is not fast food.”