Americans love their burgers and their favorite burger joint is Five Guys, according to the latest Harris Poll.
The annual brand report ranked In-N-Out as the top choice for the past two years, but Five Guys now swooped in and grabbed the crown, emerging as consumers' favorite hamburger chain this year. Rounding up the top 5 are Shake Shack, Wendy's and Culver's.
Top Burger Joint In America: Five Guys
Five Guys is an East Coast-based hamburger chain with more than 1,200 locations nationwide, and it's still expanding. The chain is popular for its simple and tasty burgers available with a slew of toppings to suit every taste and preference. It's one of the biggest players on the burger scene and the latest Harris Poll crown proves it.
"The burger brand category has become less fragmented, as regional brands expand and become available in more parts of the country," says Joan Sinopoli, Harris Poll's vice president of brand solutions. "This is certainly the case with Five Guys, who has shed its 'small regional player' designation as it expands its footprint and marketing budget¾along with its fandom, which is a tremendous contributor to brand equity."
The burger chain offers counter service: you order your meal at one counter, pick it up at another counter and either seat at a utilitarian table in the joint, or just grab it and go. All restaurants have a simple and clean design, with the chain's signature white tile walls with red checkers.
The menu is equally simple, offering burgers with various toppings, fries, hot dogs, and soda. The prices are decent, with the largest burger costing just under $9 — and it's huge. For those worried about how their food is prepared and handled, Five Guys's open kitchen model allows customers to watch the whole process and see their burger go from the grill to the final form with all the toppings.
All serving sizes are generous and the "regular" portions may be too much to take for many. A small portion for burger and fries would do just fine for a meal, unless you're particularly famished or insatiable. Of course, considering how delicious the food is, it's easy to understand why one would order a larger portion.
The wide range of toppings, all of which are free, allows for a slew of possible combinations and it would take ages to try each and every one of them. At the core, however, it's still a burger in a bun, covered with whatever you decide to add in there.
The Harris Poll reached its result after surveying more than 10,000 people aged 15 and above, and Five Guys emerged as the clear winner in this category.
"Other Burger Restaurant brands in study ranked below category average (alphabetically): Burger King, Carl's Jr., Checkers/Rally's, DQ Grill & Chill, Hardee's, Jack in the Box, White Castle," notes the survey.
Other Harris Poll Winners
When it comes to casual dining restaurants, the Cheesecake Factory ranked top. Consumers also deemed Papa John's as the best pizza chain, while Ben & Jerry ranked as the best place to go for ice cream or frozen yogurt.
Starbucks, meanwhile, ranked as the best Coffee and Quick Service Restaurant Brand of the Year.