By Faith Miller and Nicholas Wynn
A common staple of American culture and cuisine is the fast food industry. With different establishments drawing from different culinary types and styles, fast food can provide quick, easy, and diverse meals. However, can fast food beat a classic restaurant? Between a fast food stop and full-service restaurant, which has better taste, service, portions, and cost? To answer these questions, The Milestone sent staffers Faith Miller and Nicholas Wynn to find out. This month, they tested burgers at Arthur’s Café and Five Guys.
Located at 8221 Beechmont Avenue in Anderson
Miller – Arthur’s is a great place to sit down and enjoy a delicious meal. The food came out very fast and there isn’t much to complain about when it comes to the taste. I ordered The Buckaroo, which included cheddar cheese, BBQ sauce, bacon, sautéed onions, and of course the hamburger patty. Everything went together very well and the flavors didn’t overpower one another. The only downside to this burger is that it is very messy. Fries were included with the burger, and they were like any other fries but a bit on the softer side, which I personally prefer. The $12.50 is a pretty good price for all the food I received, especially since it tastes so good. The servers were consistent in checking to be sure that my meal was as I expected, and they even helped me pick out the best way for my hamburger to be cooked since I was unsure. Because of all of this, Arthur’s deserves a 9/10.
Wynn – Arthur’s is a well-known establishment of the McNick community, since a number of students serve as regular customers and employees, and I can understand why. Arthur’s was cheap, speedy, friendly, and delicious! I ordered one of their favorite burgers, the Philly Burger, with sautéed mushrooms, green peppers, and onions with provolone cheese and horseradish mayo. The burger patty was well-seasoned and all the tastes mixed together perfectly, although it could have been juicer. The bun was especially soft and airy, bringing its own addition to make the burger even better. While the fries were a little softer than I like, they weren’t poor quality by any means. The price wasn’t too high either, as my burger and fries were only $12 and there were other cheaper options. All of the servers and runners were especially nice and friendly too. The quality burgers raised Arthur’s score, but they lost some points since they needed to be a little juicier and the fries were a little soft. All things considered, Arthur’s earns a solid 8.5/10.
Located at 830 Eastgate South Drive in Eastgate
Miller – The burgers and fries at Five Guys were somewhat different compared to Arthur’s. When ordering, diners can choose any toppings at no extra cost, and there is also the option of choosing between one or two patties. I ordered a “little cheeseburger” (one patty) with mustard, ketchup, grilled onions, and pickles. The flavor of the cheeseburger was good and it really helped that the patty was juicy. However, the patties were on the thinner side compared to Arthur’s, something that I personally don’t mind. Unfortunately, the cheese wasn’t melted, which is something that I like. It was just there on the patty, so it felt kind of awkward, like it was thrown on right before serving. For the fries, the outside was crunchy and the inside was soft and warm. The overall cost was $5.19; add $1.90 if you want an extra patty. For this experience, Five Guys gets an 8.5/10.
Wynn – The identity of Five Guys rests mainly in their fries, extras always being thrown into the bag and made from fresh potatoes every day. This definitely proves true. The fries weren’t too soft or too stiff, and they tasted especially fresh. They didn’t taste overly potato-y though, as there was just the right amount of unique Five Guys seasoning. The burger was great too. I made it similar to my burger at Arthur’s, but I traded the horseradish mayo for lettuce instead. While the Five Guys burger was juicier, the patties weren’t as thick or seasoned as the Arthur’s burger patties. The bun also just tasted like a regular old bun, more like a store-bought bun than one baked fresh for the burger. Arthur’s buns, by comparison, tasted more special, freshly baked and warm. My Five Guys cheeseburger cost about $7, and a regular order of fries was about $4, although the regular size is quite shareable. All this considered, Five Guys earns a solid 8.5/10.
Overall, both Arthur’s and Five Guys were exceptional. If you’re looking to delight in more quality burgers, then we’d suggest Arthur’s. If you’re looking to devour top-notch fries, then we’d suggest Five Guys. Everything considered, Arthur’s earns a little edge over Five Guys.
Each month, Miller and Wynn will test one classic restaurant and one fast food restaurant of similar style. Comment below any suggestions for next month’s locations.