50 Burgers, 50 Days: Whataburger

 
A burger a day all around Austin, plus an answer to the pressing question: Fries or rings?
 
Day 31: Whataburger
601 Barton Springs Road. 477-9586, www.whataburger.com.
Hours: 24 hours, seven days a week.
 
By Mike Sutter | Fed Man Walking | 09.10.11
 
The burger: Why is Whataburger on a curated list of 50 like this? A public service, because there’s a probably a Whataburger a short drive away from you, and it’s open 24 hours. So maybe this report will come in handy during an all-nighter. Resist the temptation to double or triple the basic Whataburger. The single with cheese ($3.29) is an acceptable balance of meat to everything else, especially when you sub wheat for white at no extra charge. Don’t expect miracles from a thimble-full of grilled onions, but they help counter the salty beef. On the road, Whataburger has been a dependable place for decent fast food and better customer service. Even at 5 a.m., the crew at Barton Springs was sharp and personable.
 
Fries or rings? A small order of fries ($1.49) is truly small here, in a tiny bag with a Whataburger logo. I like the idea, almost like portion control. They’re boilerplate frozen fries, but I liked them better than onion rings ($1.84) with a sweet batter that lost their bravado too soon out of the fryer.
 
(Photos by Mike Sutter © Fed Man Walking)