What is the most quintessentially American meal? Certainly high up on the list would be a cheeseburger and French fries. It's hard to get much more American than a perfectly grilled beef patty topped with melted cheese sitting on a toasted bun next to a generous pile of crispy fries. So being named America's favorite Burger chain is quite an honor. For the past two years, that great honor has been bestowed upon In-N-Out Burger, but the West Coast chain was just ousted by — drumroll, please — Five Guys Burgers and Fries.
The Harris Poll named this year's Restaurant Brands of the Year yesterday and published results for America's favorite sandwich shop, pizza chain, ice cream and frozen yogurt shop, fast casual Mexican restaurant, coffee and quick service restaurant, chicken restaurant, casual dining restaurant, and of course, burger restaurant. According to an analysis of the results by the Harris Poll, Five Guys was able to take home the title of favorite burger joint for the first time this year for a few different reasons. The 100,000 consumers who were surveyed for the Harris Poll evaluated each chain based on familiarity, quality, and purchase consideration. Five Guys received high marks in all, but stood out in the purchase consideration category. Joan Sinopoli, VP of brand solutions at The Harris Poll, wrote that the chain's recently expansion and the fact that it's no longer considered just a "small regional player" was a big factor in it's winning.
Following the two leading chains that switched places this year — Five Guys and In-N-Out — were Shake Shack in third, McDonald's in seventh, and Steak 'n Shake in tenth. Though burgers might be a favorite American meal, there are of course other genres of food we care a lot about. America's favorite casual dining restaurant for 2017 is The Cheesecake Factory, favorite chicken place is Chick-fil-A, and coffee chain was — unsurprisingly — Starbucks. Ben & Jerry's, Papa John's, Moe's, and Subway were also winners. Next year, The Harris Poll should consider doing an all-around best restaurant category so we can see if Americans really are all about the burgers.