SocraticGadfly: Fast-food cults: In-N-Out vs Whataburger

November 25, 2020

Fast-food cults: In-N-Out vs Whataburger

Any time ANY news about In-N-Out in ANY state pops up on Twitter, Texans and ex-Texans, current and former denizens of the Pointy Abandoned Object State™(think about it, think about it) with the usual inferiority complex pop up and say, in essence:

"What about Whataburger?"

And? 

What about it?

Per the header, Whataburger's fanbois are just as much part of a cult as those of In-N-Out. Behind the scenes, of course, it's somewhat a Texas-vs-California bullshit smackdown, with Texans afraid the Pointy Abandoned Object State™ is becoming Californicated any time an In-N-Out opens here. (It's true; admit it.)

First, so what if In-N-Out only allegedly has two items on its menu? (It's actually more than two if you count triples, quadruples and grilled cheese.) Lots of fast food places have started declining when they've put too many items on their menus.

Second, somebody from Whataburger will say something like: "What about our green chile burgers"?

First, yes, that's the correct spelling of "chile."

Second, coming from New Mexico, I'll say "What about 'em?" in rhetorical spades.

Blake's Lotaburger makes a much better one. Per Wiki, named best burger in the world by National Geographic.

That said, both In-N-Out AND Whataburger (and Lotaburger, for that matter) are overpriced. And, Whataburger, at least, offers few coupons.

Cheap fast food, with lots of coupons, in the burgers world? Burger King.

More expensive, but cheaper than either of the cults, with more variety than In-N-Out, better flavor than Whataburger, and more coupons in the mail? Jack in the Box. I'll take it over any of the others, any day.

I used to go to Wendy's, but, since it refused to join other fast-food places in offering a few cents a pound more for Florida tomatoes, to be paid straight to the pickers, I've boycotted it, with one or two moments of weakness on coupons, for five years.

Of course, better yet, and healthier, among fast foods, is a sub sandwich with lots of vegetables on whole wheat bread.

Also overpriced is White Castle? My long-ago record of 19, and eating half of the boxes as well, all fueled by plenty of Meister Brau, still stands. But, no way I'd pay 75 cents or whatever for one of those little bitty things today.

Back to the cult of Whataburger.

Yes, I think there's an inferiority complex going on, along with fear of Californication.

To be fair, there are a couple of things done right in Texas. It overall has the best barbecue, with KC style running a close second. H-E-B is one of the best (won't say THE best) grocery chains. But Whataburger, or as I have called it on Twitter, What? A Burger?  No.

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