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The Chain Burger Joints We Want Here

It seems we're getting inundated in these parts with chain burger joints. First came Five Guys, then Elevation Burger, and now Boardwalk says it'll open 50 stores in Florida. So that got us thinking: Which chain burger joints should also be heading to South Florida?

Below is a list of the top burger joints we ought to have.

In-N-Out Burger


There's perhaps no chain more loved by its regulars or more

frequently mentioned by chefs and celebrities as a place they go to

indulge. It's a simple recipe copied now by many fast-food joints: good

buns, good patties, quality toppings. Ordering is simple: hamburger,

cheeseburger, or a double-double, which, many will argue, is the

nation's best

fast-food burger.

Nearest location: Yuma, Arizona, 2,465 miles

How badly we want it: Five out of five burgers

White Castle

The slider-style burgers at this Wichita-based chain have been made

famous by stoner movies and stoners themselves. The patties taste almost

more sausage-like than ground beef, and the onions have sort of a

reconstituted texture. Sure, this doesn't sound like much of an

endorsement, but if a White Castle opened in South Florida, you can bet

those who grew up with the tiny, greasy burgers would flood the place.

location: 900 miles, Nashville
How badly we want it: One

out of five burgers


In the commercials, Hardee's likes to drop its big burgers in front of

the camera to show just how much stuff you're getting for your four bucks. No squashed bun here. No paper-thin patty. Pickles? Yeah, you'll

get quarter-inch slices. The quality is more Applebee's than McDonald's,

which, yeah, is still Applebee's. But Hardee's has saved many a road

tripper from lesser chain burgers.
Nearest location: 110

miles, Fort Myers
How badly we want it: Two out of five burgers

Quality: One day long ago, somebody decided to top a burger with bacon and

realized they were on to something good. The same must have happened

when the folks at Culver's started using butter to griddle its amazingly

thin burgers. (CORRECTION: As noted in the comments below, Culver's isn't cooked in butter, but they put the stuff on the buns.)That butter gives the meat a nutty, sweet flavor and

a juice that drips down your arm. The patties are so thin --

it's how they eat burgers in the Midwest -- that the edges even get a bit crispy. Yeah, the rest of the burger's ingredients are good too,

but did we mention the butter?
Nearest location: Murray,

Kentucky, 1,004 miles
How badly we want it: Three out of five burgers

Taylor's Automatic Refresher

The secret here is that Taylor's is staffed by chefs in training from culinary schools. They assemble burgers so perfect that they seem

almost out of place at a fast-food joint. Take the bun: It's

brioche-style, cut right in the middle, so that the top and bottom are

the same size; it has a chewy exterior to hold the thing together and a

soft interior to absorb those great burger juices. It's one component of

an amazing burger.
Nearest location: San Francisco, 2,580

How badly we want it: Five out of five burgers


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Eric Barton
Contact: Eric Barton

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