The Fries Verdict…

Photo courtesy of
‘Mountain of deep fried goodness’
courtesy of ‘philliefan99’

Yesterday, we reported that Rays Hell Burger is now serving fries with their hamburgers. Upon inspection of a picture of said fries, there was some question as to their freshness.  They appeared to be the generic, bagged and frozen variety, which stands in direct contrast to Ray’s mantra of fresh meat and fresh ingredients.  Well, I believe that I can lay your fears to rest.  After some hard hitting investigation, during which I subjected the fries to my discerning palate, I’ll say unequivocally that these fries are not frozen (maybe).

I visited Ray’s last night to sample their new menu offering.  Before I ordered, I poked around the place, looking for tell-tale french fry bags.  I saw none.  When I went to the counter, I took a gander at the fryer and saw a batch of uncooked fries sitting in the basket.  To me, they appeared fresh, but unfortunately, cut potatoes and frozen potatoes bear a striking resemblance. I got my order and tried a few of the fries and they had a distinct, potato flavor.  More distinct than the frozen varieties that I have sampled.  Plus, some of the fries still had potato skin on them.  So, I’m not wholly confident in my judgment, but I’m sticking with fresh.  If anyone gets more intel, let us know.

Kirk is a Maine-born, military brat who moved no fewer than 12 times during his childhood. He came to the DC area in 2004 for his undergrad and decided that it was the place for him. Since graduating, he’s nabbed a job with the Fed and spends most of his free time hunting for cheap thrills in the city. Find out why he loves DC.

12 thoughts on “The Fries Verdict…

  1. Hard-hitting investigation? I get the sense from this post you didn’t actually ask someone in authority at Ray’s whether the fries are fresh-cut or not. That would be a little more hard-hitting than eyeing the fryer and sampling a few pieces.

  2. Blow your cover?! That’s a standard question that any customer of a restaurant would be justified in asking … no reason to identify yourself as a blogger or journalist at all.

  3. You need a “cover” to do this sort of work? I had no idea talking about frozen frenchfries was such a dangerous occupation. Things certainly have changed since the days I told Jean Louis Pallidin that his moulles frites lack a certain frisson, at which point he tried to punch me in the dick.

  4. This thread seems to confirm the frozen-ness of the fries (said packages having been observed in the kitchen), the necessity of that choice based on existing production constraints, the owner’s opinion that a frozen packaged potato can indeed be the right potato for the job, and etc.

  5. Damn you, my palate! Damn you! Well, that’s a shame. I will say that they were better than many of the frozen fries I’ve had.

  6. By the way, give Kirk a break on the phrase “hard-hitting investigation.” It was intended to be tongue-in-cheek after we spent yesterday on the authors’ mailing list (and twitter) wondering who was going to make time to get out and try the fries, and gosh, it’s a tough life we local bloggers have, and thanks for diving on that grenade for us, Kirk!

    It was a joke, y’all. Lighten up. We’re talking about fried potatoes here. :)

  7. I was thinking of posting this yesterday but decided against it then: good french fries are more about how well they’re fried than the quality of the product.

    Fries are such a cheap food (remember: basically potatos, cut up, that you fry) that overthinking it can ruin perfectly good fries. I mean Boardwalk and Five Guys have such good fries because they fry them in peanut oil, rather than vegitable oil. And we all know that frying them in animal fat (alla McDs from the dawn of creation to the early 80s) would be oh so much better! So, as long as they fry them completely, I have no problem with frozen, pre-cut fries.

    Now I’m hungry…damn it!

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