Monday, May 26, 2014

Burger Time: Our First Visit To Five Guys Burgers And Fries

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After hearing all the hubbub of Carl’s Jr. and Sonic only to have them be just another fast food joint with decent fries, I didn’t get my hopes up too much for the latest conquest of burgerdom – Five Guys Burgers and Fries. There was a small line when we arrived at the new location they just built in Monroe, but it wasn’t bad for a rainy, opening weekend night at all. Of course, even if the line had been huge, it wouldn’t have mattered as they made my day by having shelled peanuts available while you waited for your food. Glancing up at the menu, I saw the model that more burger joints should follow, buy the burger for a higher price and we will put whatever you want on it for no charge. Simple, clean and easy. I like menus like this. I ordered up a double patty, bacon cheeseburger with my smattering of toppings. A little hot sauce, jalapenos, some barbeque sauce and a bit of mayo to cool the whole thing off. Now we wait.

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The wait wasn’t all that bad as the line apparently decided to show up about 5 minutes after we ordered. Even still, food was coming out of there quick. We sat down and ate some peanuts and waited. The restaurant itself was very bright and friendly. The cleaning crew was doing a great job bussing tables and keeping the floor clean. Pretty much everything at Five Guys was red and white, which if you like bright read and white buildings, you have found your new hangout. To me, it seemed like an attempt at bringing Johnny Rocket’s back to life without the singing waiters and smiley faced ketchup plates. The place was loud, but not quite Red Robin loud as you could still carry on a conversation over the top of the other patrons and the music that was playing.

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Finally, the food arrived, and I don’t say finally because it took so long, but rather I am sitting in the corner of the place just drooling over the smells. The aroma of burgers on the grill and the tons of different sauces drifting through the air made the 5 minutes seem like 5 days, especially to the hungry ones in the room. When the food was called, a big brown paper bag was given to us and we opened it up to find two “small” burgers, a hot dog and their “large” fries. Beginning with the fries first, this large fry was more like 2 or 3 large fries elsewhere. There were three of us working on it, but we still didn’t make it through it all. Then the split grilled hotdog as perfectly done. Split grilling always tastes so good, but this one was just delicious even plain. Even the kiddo ate 3/4’s of the full size hot dog.

Then we get to the burger that I ordered. Opening up the foil revealed a gorgeous two patty burger, medium well done, with two pieces of American cheese, a layer of bacon and some of the most delicious sauces I have ever tried. There was the BBQ sauce that strangely resembled Sweet Baby Ray’s, but with a bit more kick. There was also the hot sauce which vaguely reminded me of Franks, without as much kick. Then the fresh cut, non-cooked jalapenos and a light coating of mayo came in on the bottom bun to tie it all together. The burger was fantastic and well worth the $5.69 that it cost.

As a family, we spent around $30 for dinner at Five Guys. This makes it about on par with a trip to Denny’s and a bit cheaper than a burger place like Red Robin or Blazing Onion. Of course, you have some additional options at those places, so I’m not sure what to compare Five Guys to other than Burger Madness here in Monroe. Given the quality of the burger, the amazing fries and the customization options for your burgers, I don’t see how Madness can even attempt to keep up. In fact, the burgers at Five Guys were so much better than the char-grilled ones from Madness, I feel pretty comfy in saying that we probably won’t be back there anytime soon.

Overall, Five Guys Burgers and Fries definitely did the job well and crafted us a few good burgers for our first experience. We will see how it goes next time we visit, which given our first trip in, should be rather soon.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Farm, Frills And Some Vintage Trailers


A few months back, Ara made plans with some friends to make her way down to the Farm and Frills Antique Show at the old King County Fairgrounds in Enumclaw. Unfortunately, about 2 week ago, plans fell through and it didn’t look like it was going to work out to go to it. Of course, knowing how much she had been looking forward to going, I made some plans to put us in the south end for Mother’s Day, where it would be easy for us to make the show.

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The show itself was a bit smaller than I expected. Ton’s of cool stuff, but not nearly as much square footage as I was hoping for. Knick-nacks, old furniture and decor and a few neat projects were the flavors of the day at the Farm and Frills show. There were some vintage hats, boots and dresses. Evie really loved the hats.


I found a few project ideas that might work nicely in our house. This chalkboard organizer would be great to write the weeks events on, especially if Evie ends up taking Elite dance next year.There were also tons of repainted picture frames, a few pieces of furniture and quite a few chairs. We left with one such chair, and love it.

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Departing from the show, it was time for part two of the event, the Vintage Trailer Show! In a true throwback to the 60’s, these mini trailers looked like they would be amazing to go “glamping’'” (yes, that’s their word for it) in just about anywhere. Some of them had bathrooms, others were so small that they didn’t have much more than a bed in them.

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The best part of the trailers were the colors. Having been all touched up, these older trailers just beamed when the sun finally came through the cold, wet clouds.


Inside the tiny trailers there was plenty of room to sit and have a meal at the table, which then doubled as a bed for later on in the evening. These trailers were pretty impressive to say the least. Most of them were smaller, but made amazing use of the space they had to get the most out of them.


Evie found her pink one that was hers. Ara found a yellow one, or two, that were hers. I didn’t really have a favorate as much as I found a new appreciation for them after this great little show.


After we finished up at the two shows, we jetted in to town and stopped at The Mint Restraurant and Alehouse for a quick lunch. The food was incredible. From there, it was off to Puyallup to check in to the hotel for day two of our Mother’s Day adventure, which will be another post because of how cool everything was at Northwest Trek.