I was recently in Houston, and got food delivered from Kenny and Ziggy’s, a Jewish deli. I love their sandwiches, and they make a great bagel with sable and all the trimmings, but they can’t do one specific thing with any degree of competence: Pickles.
They must be making their own pickles. Otherwise, some company out there is getting away with selling an inedible product. The first time I ordered from them, the pickle they gave me was so salty I couldn’t eat it. The second time, it was a soggy cucumber. No salt, no vinegar, just a cucumber with more than the usual allotment of water.
What other examples do Dopers have of restaurants that are at least competent, if not good or great, in general, but can’t do one specific thing at all?
In-N-Out fries. You have to order them a “secret” way just to get them to be marginally edible. They need to either figure out what everyone else in their industry has solved decades ago, or just take them off the menu.
You are going to have to provide more details cause when I google “Sable” I get only the definition I was expecting … which would make for an ingredient that I hadn’t considered a Jewish specialty … just another thing you learn when reading the Dope!
Carl’s Jr (or Hardees back East) makes some of the best charbroiled burgers I’ve tasted in fast food, but whenever they do hot dogs (it’s a seasonal item) they’re some of the worst hot dogs I’ve ever tasted. They’ll always have them for surprisingly cheap which is why I’ll get one once just to see if they ever improve but nope, they taste like gas station $1 hot dogs except worse somehow. The meat is always really rubbery like they left them to boil too long.
Speaking of which, McDonalds salads. I don’t know if it’s because they don’t sell that many of them but every McDonald’s salad I’ve ever eaten (the former $1 one or the “Premium” ones) taste like they’ve been in a freezer for the past week (they probably have) and the lettuce is all wilted.
Sable. If earthy’s just not your thing, consider sable as a topping for your next bagel. The smoked black cod is lightly coated in paprika, which offsets the pale, firm fish with a deep orange-red hue . It’s buttery, with a natural sweetness that makes getting the last slice something of a competitive sport in my family …
I find this to be true of any restaurant that boasts about “hand cut fries”. Good french fries don’t happen by just cutting up potatoes and dropping them in the fryer. Potatoes need to be processed then frozen to make fries that are crisp on the outside and fluffy inside.
Del Taco is definitely the best of the fast food “Mexican” chains, but their hamburgers, which are supposed to be an imitation of In-n-Out’s, are the worst I’ve ever had at any fast food restaurant. The burger patties are flavorless and textureless and the Thousand Island sauce is utterly bland.
There’s a local Italian chain near me that I get subs from. I like to get a hot one to eat now and a cold one to eat later. On the latter I ask for no vegetables or condiments, because if it has that stuff on it and you stick it in the fridge, it just turns into a mushy, disgusting mess. But they always look at me like I’m nuts when I order it that way. Sometimes I explain myself to them, other times not, but either way they always look at me weird and go “Okaay…”
Depends on what you like in a fry. I love the hand cuts you can find all around hot dog stands in Chicago. Fresh potato, double fried, skin on, nothing else. Lightly crisp on the outside, potatoey goodness on the inside. Definitely not like a McDonald’s fry, which is best in its class, but a different beast. These fries taste very potatoey. Five guys does a great fry for my tastes of the national chains.
In N Out’s suck, no matter how you order them. But plenty of people seem to love them, or claim to love them, that it would be stupid for them to change. (I love love love their burgers, but, can’t do those fries.)