Why All the Fuss Over In-N-Out?

All that talk about CalTaco and Habit yesterday reminded me of something I need to tell you.

Now this may not go over so well with my West Coast readers, but it’s something I want to get off my chest:

In-N-Out is not that good!

In-N-Out burger and fries.

When I used to work at the Santa Barbara Airport, a question people would often ask me was, “Where’s the nearest In-N-Out?”

The question always baffled me – people were flying into one of the most beautiful places in the United States and all they could think of is where the closest fast food joint is located.

That’s a whole other issue in itself – but let’s talk In-N-Out burgers.

If you drive by an In-N-Out during lunch or dinner time, the drive-thru line will be at least 15-20 cars long – no exaggeration whatsoever – people here absolutely love them.

They’re tasty (albeit still a fast-food burger) and nicely wrapped up for you – more complex than McDonald’s and made to order (probably why the drive-thru line is so long).

The fries are a different story.

Anyone remember the fries you were served in fifth grade in the cafeteria?

That might sound harsh, but I’m sure if you ask around you’ll find that’s a pretty damn good description. Just look at the picture!

I guess that is their claim to fame, too – that they make their own fries.

A single tear runs down my face for the multimillion-dollar corporate giant.

Update: Forgot to mention the previously unadvertised “Animal Style” option at In-N-Out, which means they put Thousand Island dressing, grilled onions, mustard-cooked beef and pickles on the burger or fries.

In fact, they used to have a secret menu, but there are no secrets on the Internet.


  1. The fries don’t even taste like food. To me they taste like edible cardboard. The burgers are mediocre at best (animal style is even worse), but I am one of the few people in the world that doesn’t like In-n-Out. Virtually everyone I know loves In-N-Out and it baffles me as to why? If I wanted a fast-food burger and fries, I would always pick Carl’s Jr’s. They know how to make a fast food burger taste delicious.

  2. I cannot agree more. While visiting you all last month we consumed an animal style meal… Tasty yes, but WAY over priced and WAY overrated. Been there, done that… And don’t even have a stinking t-shirt! I’ll pas the next time, if it’s all the same to you… Leave that crap for the locals.

  3. I went into Caltaco one day there, maybe because I was rough from the night before I didn’t really get to enjoy it as much as i should have. Habit was quality, ate there a few times after sampling their fries and garlic sauce.

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