Grub Street just named Shake Shack the best burger in NYC -- here's why they're right

Shake ShackMarina Nazario/Business InsiderThe ShackBurger in all its glory.

Grub Street just named Shake Shack’s ShakeBurger the best burger in New York City.

My first thought after reading this was, really? A burger from a fast casual chain just beat out the many gourmet burgers you can get at New York’s many high-end restaurants?

But then I thought about it some more, and agreed.

The ShackBurger might not be the fanciest burger around, but it is the best

The ShackBurger was the first burger I ever had in NYC. In fact, it was the first thing I ate when I arrived in the city to look for apartments.

At that time, I knew absolutely nothing about the NYC food scene. I hadn’t heard about Minetta Tavern’s or the Spotted Pig’s lauded gourmet burgers, or the classic cheeseburgers available at institutions like J.G. Melon, P.J. Clark’s, or Corner Bistro.

But I had heard about the ShackBurger.

Business Insider / Sarah SchmalbruchThe Instagram I took of my first ShackBurger.

Simplicity is key, and Shake Shack does simple right
The first bite I took of that burger is something I’ll never forget.

Maybe it’s because I’m a purist when it comes to food. Or maybe it’s just the delicious simplicity of the Shackburger’s soft potato bun enveloping a thin, freshly ground beef patty that’s blanketed in cheese, lettuce, tomato, and a creamy secret sauce.

Because the thing is, when I order a cheeseburger I’m expecting something very specific. I’m not expecting a pretzel bun or some type of ciabatta roll. I’m not expecting blue cheese or Roquefort, or radishes, or pickled carrots, or truffles.

Give me the basics, and give them to me done right.

That’s exactly what Shack Shake does with the ShackBurger. It’s the basics presented in the form of a perfectly sized, perfectly tasty burger.

Shake ShackSarah Schmalbruch / INSIDERMe at NYC’s first Shake Shack. I’m holding the shroom burger, not the ShackBurger, though.

It’s all about that secret sauce and meat-to-bun ratio
Yes, you can find good, basic burgers at diners and pubs around the city, but they don’t have Shake Shack’s signature ShackSauce.

Plus, their ratios are often off. They either have too much doughy bun or too much heavy meat. But in one bite of the ShackBurger you get a delicious mix of all the burger’s parts. Not too much, not too little, but just right.

It’s hard to find an NYC burger that checks all these boxes and has the cult following that ShackBurger has developed over the 12 years of its existence.

So thank you Grub Street, for honouring a burger that stays true to its burger roots, instead of some gourmet burger that’s trying to redefine the burger — which needs no redefining at all.

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