Shake Shack

Price: 
2
Cuisine: 
Burgers
Hot Dogs
Ice Cream
Hours: 
Mon–Sun: 11:00 AM–11:00 PM
11 Madison Ave (at E 23rd St)
New York 10010
(212) 889-6600
shake shack madison square park
details

If you haven’t had Shake Shack but think you love burgers, you don’t as much as you think you do. It’s one of America’s best fast-food burgers. Yes, better than In-N-Out, and yes, it has its own secret menu… kind of (it’s just called Danny Meyer’s hospitality philosophy). What started as a hot dog cart in Madison Square Park in 2001 has made history. In 2004, restaurateur Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group won the bid to open a permanent kiosk in the park, and the lines, buzz, cult following, and even a somewhat begrudging review from The New York Times followed. What’s the big deal? Quality. And one of the juiciest cheeseburgers (100 percent all-natural Angus beef, no hormones, no antibiotics) you’ll ever find on a soft, grilled potato roll (ask for pickles and onions!). Then there’s the Shack-cago dog, which you could argue is the best Chicago-style hot dog outside of the Windy City. Frozen custards (a rotating list of flavors) are super smooth, thick, and creamy, and their "Concretes" (custard blended with mix-ins) are too much fun to be good for you. Shake Shack’s vigorous expansion program — Theatre District, Coral Gables, Abu Dhabi! — might disqualify it from The Daily Meal’s 101 Best Restaurant list in the future, but this original location, though it has apparently spawned an empire, remains a classic. -- Arthur Bovino