The student news site of Thomas Worthington High School


The student news site of Thomas Worthington High School


The student news site of Thomas Worthington High School


The Total Eclipse
The Total Eclipse
May 15, 2024

    The Search for the Ultimate Burger: Fast Food Edition


    As you mosey down 161, bask in the glorious sight of the fast food industry dotting the horizon as far as the eye can see. The Golden Arches gleam over the gray suburban wasteland while the king reigns over the land. But of all the wondrous delight that these establishments have provided for people near and far, which one is the ultimate craving satisfier.


    But there’s the problem, how does one determine just what is the GOAT of fast food. Well, why not start at the very simplest of beginnings. If a fast food restaurant cannot produce a palatable junior cheeseburger, then is it even a restaurant or simply a waste of space.


    As far as rating goes, there will be 4 categories as follows:

    Appearance – If it don’t look good, it don’t taste good. 

    Overall palatability – This one is fairly broad, but when you’re buying food, you want it to more than just taste good. It needs to include the perfect formula of flavor, texture, and amount.

    Wow factor – I will be ordering plain junior cheeseburgers. This means at a bare minimum it has to include cheese and burger. But, a burger can be special and if a restaurant is able to ‘wow’ me with something unexpectedly spectacular, then that could raise the rating. 

    Value – If all the food is going to be somewhat mid, I’m not trying to break the bank on a couple of cheeseburgers. But if it’s going to cost me, it better be getting a good experience.


    The first stop on our flavor journey was Mcdonald’s, and it was frankly looking quite sad. First impressions, the burger looked like it got sat on and the oversized, semi-gloss bun didn’t add to the appearance. Taking a closer look at the makeup of the burger, there were the signature small pieces of onion which added a strong onion flavor to the burger, but as far as wow factor goes, that really was the extent of the surprise. The kicker is that this burger cost $2.39, which puts it confidently in the top half of the price range. While the surprise additions to the burger made it a more enjoyable experience, the burger would rank a 4.5 out of 10. 


    Now, the King isn’t always my first choice when I need a good burger, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. But as I analyzed these quickly cooling burgers, I was pleasantly surprised at the flavor that seeped from the contents of this delicious treat. The sesame seed bun, well stacked toppings, all on a proportionally sized patty made for a very presentable burger that I was actually excited to eat. The classic grill burger provided a smoky taste as if it was really made with care, and not just a cheeseburger. Along with that, there was a near perfect balance of pickles, onions, and condiments. Best of all, coming in at $2.19, the Burger King cheeseburger was as much of a steal as you can get in this high priced fast food market. This burger gets an extra point since I ate the whole thing and enjoyed it. This puts Burger King firmly in first place at a  definitive 6.5/10.


    Next up is the hometown kid itself, the Wendy’s junior cheeseburger. Back in the day I used to pound these down like nobody’s business, so there was a little bias in this rating. Luckily, it was so bad that even the bias didn’t really matter. The cheese was plopped haphazardly on the burger without any chance for it to melt. The sandwich looked dry, fake, and unimpressive. Things didn’t improve much with actual taste, even if there was pickle, ketchup, and mustard. The pickle was intensely strong, the mustard was weirdly poor, at least the Wendy’s ketchup was as good as always. Overall, the burger was flavorless, and the pickle and ketchup were too overpowering. The only real positive factor was the cheap $1.89 price tag that still seems steep for the overall quality. All that adds up to a whopping 3.5/10.


    Although the most expensive, the price did not reflect the experience. After numerous mediocre burgers, I hoped this would be the cream of the crop. Unfortunately that was not the case, this burger was bland and the cheese had not melted properly. It was the best appearance wise, but the burger was in desperate need of toppings to add some ounce of flavor. The patty looked the most appealing as it was a smash burger, but lacked wow factor or any enjoyable flavors. In the end, the $4.19 burger was not the best and ranked 4/10. 


    A huge upset occurred today. Against all odds, Burger King came out as the favorite, and it really wasn’t close. The official Best of the Worst Burger award goes to the King himself. With a dominant performance in all categories, it really makes you wonder, does a plain cheeseburger really show who’s the best.

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