DAILY DIRT: Who’s got the best fast-food cheeseburger?


I like mine with lettuce and tomato, Heinz 57 and french fried potatoes. Big kosher pickle and a cold draft beer... Well, good God almighty which way do I steer — James William Buffett

Daily Dirt for Monday, Feb. 26, 2024

The website in question says the winner is “truly memorable”. Hey, ALL cheeseburgers are memorable … Welcome to today’s three thoughts that make up Vol. 877 of The Daily Dirt.

1.There are few things in the world better than a well-crafted cheeseburger.

Opening Day of baseball season, your wedding day and the arrival of your first born probably rank higher, but a world-class cheeseburger could certainly hold its own in fourth place.

That’s why I was so taken with an article I came across a few days ago that ranked all fast-food cheeseburgers. The worldtravelling.com website took me on “a rollercoaster ride of taste, texture and tantalizing tales … in the fierce arena of fast-food cheeseburgers.”

I am only including the cheeseburgers available in West-Central Illinois and Northeast Missouri in the following rankings, with comments complements of the website:

  • 1. Culver’s: “Culver’s introduces the uninitiated to the ButterBurger, an iconic representation of the Midwest’s love affair with butter. This isn’t just a burger; it’s a culinary statement, with each patty cooked to perfection and served on a lightly buttered bun that adds a subtle richness and softness, enhancing the overall flavor profile. The ButterBurger is Culver’s ode to indulgence, a reminder of the simple pleasures that can be found in a meal prepared with care and tradition. It’s a harmonious blend of comfort and flavor, encapsulating what makes a burger truly memorable.”
  • 2. Sonic: “Sonic’s SuperSonic double cheeseburger introduces a fresh take with lettuce and tomato, enhancing its appeal with a half-pound of juicy meat priced at $9.75. The burger’s fresh ingredients, including crisp lettuce and a non-watery tomato, complement the well-seasoned juicy patties.”
  • 3. Hardee’s: “Hardee’s doesn’t shy away from bold flavors and innovative burger concepts, as evidenced by the Double Western Bacon Cheeseburger and the Jalapeño Angus Burger. These offerings are a testament to Hardee’s understanding that sometimes, more is more. The Double Western Bacon Cheeseburger combines the smoky sweetness of barbecue sauce with the richness of bacon, creating a sensory experience that’s both familiar and thrilling. Hardee’s burgers are a culinary adventure designed for those who believe a burger should be a meal to remember, not just a quick bite.”
  • 4. McDonald’s: “McDonald’s double cheeseburger, at $3.79, embodies the quintessential fast-food burger experience without managing to stand out. Its combination of standard toppings and cheese on a soft, bland bun offers a predictable taste that does little to excite the palate.”
  • 5. Dairy Queen: “Dairy Queen attempts to leverage its ‘Grill & Chill’ concept with burgers like the FlameThrower Stackburger and the Loaded A.1. burger feels contrived. Despite the allure of unique ingredients, these burgers fail to rise above mediocrity, serving as mere distractions from Dairy Queen’s strength in frozen treats. The reliance on gimmicks over genuine quality places Dairy Queen’s burgers as an afterthought, overshadowed by its iconic Blizzards.”
  • 6. Wendy’s: “Wendy’s attempt at a double cheeseburger falls disappointingly flat. Its junior-size patties and uneven topping distribution make for a lackluster meal. The promising elements, like flavorful pickles and a unique sweet onion touch, are overshadowed by a flawed assembly that leaves much to be desired. The burger’s potential is undermined by its execution, rendering it a frustratingly mediocre choice that fails to live up to its promise.”
  • 7. Steak ‘N Shake: “Despite its historical roots, Steak ‘n Shake’s current burger offerings, like the overly indulgent Garlic Double Steakburger, fall short of expectations. The chain’s attempt to cling to tradition through its butter burgers does little to elevate the dining experience, with its struggles to adapt to modern tastes becoming increasingly apparent.”
  • 8. Burger King: “While affordable, Burger King’s burger is a prime example of mediocrity, burdened by an overwhelming ketchup dominance that masks the other flavors. The imbalance in condiment distribution and the burger’s excessive heft make it a regrettable option for those searching for a balanced and enjoyable fast-food burger.”

2. Baseball fans, have you ever considered that:

  • Prince Fielder had more inside-the-park home runs (2) than Rickey Henderson (1)?
  • Babe Ruth had more steals of home (10) than Rickey Henderson (4). (No, I’m not picking on Rickey. These two items are just mighty odd.)
  • Babe Ruth threw the same amount of shutouts (17) in his relatively brief career as a pitcher as Pedro Martinez did?

3. Five of the world’s strangest museums/displays can be found in my homeland of Ohio. I’m not sure if I’m proud of that — or not — after seeing the results of this study. In no particular order, those must-see museums are:

  • Allen County Museum in Lima, Ohio: Has a display of the most unusual items ever swallowed by a human being — and removed from the bodies. Go figure.
  • Hot Dog Bun Museum in Toledo, Ohio: Styrofoam hot dog funs with celebrities signatures on them. If you’re familiar with that face-plant emoji, insert it right here. For the record, there are 1,500 fake hot dog buns on display.
  • Sturgis Mortuary Museum in Marietta, Ohio: People are just dying to see this.
  • Pencil Sharpener Museum in Logan, Ohio: There are more than 3,400 different pencil sharpeners. Well, apparently SOMEONE is interested, right? 
  • Troll Hole in Alliance, Ohio: At one time, those furry little trolls were in-demand collectibles. Now they’re not. The people who have tens, hundreds or thousands of them tucked away in boxes in their attics are likely who visits this museum.

Steve  Thought O’ The Day — I have a question about that Allen County Museum. Were the people dead or alive when those items were removed?

Steve Eighinger writes daily for Muddy River News. Many things in baseball can be argued, but this cannot: Rickey Henderson is the greatest leadoff hitter of all-time.

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