Last night, the lovely wife, boy #2 and I went to the Shake Shack on Columbus and 78th Street. I had been to the one in Madison Square Park some years ago and been rather underwhelmed but decided to give it another go. No change. Although the hot dog (the Shack-ago. Get it. ha ha) was rather good, the burgers were small and a bit greasy. The fries were terrible, as in, for 1/2 the price you could have eaten McDonald's, which taste better and give you the same amount of heartburn. The shake was fine. I am not going back.
All of this got me thinking about how good the burgers, fries and shakes were at Le Parker Meridien at 119 West 56th Street (212-708-7414). The four of us biked down there one weekend for lunch a few weeks ago. The fries were crisp and tasty and the burger was good, and I enjoyed them more as I continued to eat them. The heartburn factor was acceptable. And, since the place is full of tourists, its easy to get a seat if you are a pushy New Yorker (boy number 2 literally knocked over an FBI agent to get us seats!). The only thing you need to know is to bring cash. If you end up in Midtown North, I can think of far worse places to end up!