To begin with a little background info: Steak N’ Shake is a 50s diner-themed fast food sit-down restaurant, offering typical diner fare of burgers, fries, malts, shakes, and sandwiches (For anyone who has been to Johnny Rockets before, the concept is relatively the same, though in my experience, Steak N Shake is cheaper). Most recently, Steak N Shake has opened a brand new location in the Fredericksburg area on route 1 south of UMW. Interestingly, this is the only Steak N Shake location in the entire mid-atlantic, with the majority of the restaurants concentrated in the mid-west and southeastern US

The food at Steak N Shake is sub-par to average at best. Everything is more or less dripping with grease (soggy, in some cases) and usually includes bacon (if a heart-attack on a plate doesn’t sound appealing to you, avoid Steak N Shake). However, the food is cheap, and portions are relatively large. Something else to keep in mind, is that the restaurant offers an extremely limited menu selection, with no entree-type vegetarian options (which I suppose can be expected of a restaurant specializing in hamburgers).

Being a chicken-tarian myself(I don’t eat beef or pork), I suppose my review carries less weight, since I’ve never actually tasted the burgers.
What I have ordered, are the cheese fries, a chocolate malt, and the chicken (chic-fil-a type) sandwich. For the cheese fries, expect an ample portion of shoestring cut fries, covered in nacho-style cheese (the kind that comes out of the pump at the movie theatre/carnival). You’re also provided vinegar/pepper sauce, which I would recommend  adding to the fries if you enjoy a spicy flavor. Otherwise, the dish is overpowered by a nacho-like flavor.

The malts are also subpar. For about $3 you do get a large glass/malt container full of shake/malt, but unfortunately, there’s nothing too impressive about the “Shake” portion of “Steak N’ Shake”. You may pay about a full dollar more for a milkshake at another restaurant, but I would argue that you’re likely also getting at least a standard quality shake. At Steak N’ Shake, your $3 will get you a comparatively subpar glass of disappointment.

Finally, I would say that the chicken sandwich is a brightspot on the non-burger portion of the menu that I have experience with. The fillet is breaded and fried, and the quality similar to a McDonalds or Wendy’s type chicken sandwich. The price is also comparable to that of other fastfood restaurants (except for Chic-Fil-A, which is slightly cheaper and in my opinion, considerably better).

Overall, I would encourage trying out Steak N Shake at least once, and to definitely try the burgers, since there’s a possibility they may be uncharacteristically outstanding. I would also admit that Steak N’ Shake is more or less an example of “you get what you pay for” (cheap prices=cheap quality food), and may be a good option for a greasy, cheap midnight snack with friends (open until 2AM).

 

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