We had to attack the Shake Shack. After two weeks of devouring tales of long lines and gushing reviews on Facebook and Twitter, my friend Peggy and I finally war gamed our day around lunch at Chestnut Hill’s hottest new burger joint.
It was a Thursday after 1 p.m., so we didn’t think we’d have to cool our heels outside this over-hyped hamburger hamlet. But we did — for around 15 minutes.
Peggy spent the time furiously texting and snapping pics to chronicle our trip on Facebook while I stared daggers at the local Lululemon-clad mommies holding up the line with their swish supersized baby carriages. I know they’ll be in Whole Foods later so I got a jumpstart on being judgmental. Damn, I’m hungry.
“I heard in New York, there’s a camera near one of the Shake Shacks so you can see how long the line is,” said the guy behind me to his whiny companion who sounded like she’d rather be water boarded than be standing in a line to sample New York’s latest export.
Where would they put such a camera in Chestnut Hill? Next door at Sports Club/LA? Highly doubtful.
Finally, we get to order. I opted for the ‘Shroom Burger, a veggie option stuffed with cheese ($6.95), while Peggy ordered a classic single ShackBurger ($4.75) . We split a small order of crinkle cut fries ($2.95) and both decided to try the featured Strawberry Lemonade made with real strawberries. We would have gotten Shakes (vanilla malted for me, please), but we both had eyed the new Pinkberry and Treat Cupcake Bar on the way in…
As reported, the burgers were tasty, but I thought the fries were outstanding. The lemonades had too much ice in them for $2.95 but you could taste the strawberries. But our real bitch about the place: no cell phone service, no wi-fi. Don’t these people know about Instagram????
Post-Shack, Peggy felt the need to show me her new gym, the aforementioned SportsClub/LA that looks like a temple to physical fitness. I’m surprised I was allowed past the desk with Shake Shack on my breath.
During my purchase of a $2.50 bottle of water in the lobby –- boy, something was over-salted — I chatted up a woman who, much to my chagrin, was the gym’s nutritionist.
“I had the ‘Shroom Burger,” I confessed. “It was delicious.”
“Well, it’s fried you know,” she said matter-of-factly.
No, I didn’t know and I think it’s rude of you to mention it as you look at me in that judgey way. Only I can do that. (See above.)
“Oh, well, I guess I didn’t realize it as I was devouring French fries as well,” I laughed. “I won’t be having that again.”
Nutritionist Lady just stared at me. She may have been trying to hold down some bile.
Where the hell is Peggy?
After a trip through the luxe locker rooms and onto the floor packed with machines –- some rather scary looking — we made our way to the Treat store that thankfully wasn’t open yet. (The conspiracy theorist in me thinks the nutritionist called down and told the staff to lock the door and hide.)
Next door, a new Pinkberry associate told us the store didn’t open until tomorrow morning at 10, but feel free to come by tonight between 6 and 9 for free frozen yogurt.
And stand in another line? I’ll pass.
This piece previously appeared in the Foodsmith blog on Tumblr.