According to a new poll, Five Guys has unseated In-N-Out as America’s favorite burger chain. Though this prompted ire in Los Angeles, it’s clear that In-N-Out will continue to be the crowd favorite.
Well-known for its minimalist menu, the burger chain founded in Southern California in 1948 enjoys a cult following that includes celebrities and chefs who enjoy its straightforward burger menu and animal-style (every topping in the house) fries.
To find out just how deep the love for In-N-Out runs, Eater turned to the restaurant world itself, consulting chefs to find out exactly what they eat when they’re the customer and not the cook.
David Chang, Momofuku (NYC): One grilled cheese with griddled tomatoes, animal-style and spicy.
Anthony Bourdain, Parts Unknown: A Double-Double, animal-style.
Charles Bililies, Souvla (SF): “A Double-Double, animal-style with chopped chilies, well-done fries, and an iced tea with two lemons.”
Richie Nakano (formerly Hapa Ramen) (SF): “I only go to In-N-Out hungover so this is bleak but: 3x3 animal-style, fries animal-style, pink lemonade, vanilla shake.”
Brooke Williamson, Hudson House (LA): Animal-style, protein-style. “Flavor minus some of the guilt.”
Preeti Mistry, Juhu Beach Club (SF): Single cheeseburger, animal-style, fries extra crispy, and a Coke. “Probably the only time I drink Coke but it’s part of the flavor sensation. I prefer the single cheeseburger because I think it is all about the balance of flavors... to me the Double-Double throws off the balance. And their fries are soggy unless you ask for extra crispy.”
Brandon Jew, Mister Jiu's (SF): “#1 animal-style, add caramelized onions and add pepperoncini.”
Brett Cooper, Aster (SF): “Double-Double, mustard, grilled, extra pickles, animal-style fries.”
Traci des Jardins, Jardinière (SF): “Cheeseburger, animal-style.”
Walter Manzke, Republique (LA): “Best burger that exists, but maybe because that’s because I grew up on it. It’s really the benchmark of burgers. At our restaurant Pink’s in Manila, we actually used the In-N-Out burger for inspiration except we make our own bread. When I go in LA, I used to eat Double-Doubles, but I think I’m getting too old for that. Now I split it between two days (with a green juice in between) and get a single patty two days in a row, but always animal-style.”
Evan & Sarah Rich, Rich Table (SF): “We always get the Double-Double. One normal fries, one animal-style. Last time for whatever reason Evan ordered for me and got just a plain cheeseburger. Didn’t go well.”
Ludo Lefebvre, Trois Mec (LA): “Double-Double protein-style, with well-done fries.”
Kris Yenbamroong, Night + Market (LA): Most recent order for Night+Market crew: “10 Double-Doubles (animal-style) and 10 animal-style fries, plus chocolate milkshakes and plenty of spicy cascabella peppers.”
Melissa Perello, Octavia (SF): “I rarely eat at In-N-Out anymore because of work, but when I do, it’s usually on the drive up to or the drive back from Tahoe. My go-to is always an animal-style cheeseburger and a chocolate milk shake. No fries.”
Jon Shook, Animal (LA): “One hamburger, no onion, extra pickle, and one protein-style hamburger, no onion, extra pickles, and fries.”
Vinny Dotolo, Animal (LA): “One Double-Double, protein-style with no onion.”
Niki Nakayama, n/naka (LA): “I love In-N-Out! I like the cheeseburger with both cooked and raw onions. No [special sauce], just ketchup and mustard.”
Kwang Uh, Baroo (LA): “Cheeseburger with grilled onions, sometimes animal-style.”
Mark Bolton, Coin-Op (SF): “Double-Double, extra lettuce and tomato, no sauce, medium lemonade, and fries extra crispy.”
Matt Brimer, (formerly Haven) (SF): “Double-Double animal-style or a Flying Dutchman with jalapeños.”
Ray Garcia, Broken Spanish (LA): “Double-Double animal-style with chopped chiles, plus a single burger the same way.”
• All In-N-Out Coverage [E]