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Thursday, July 6, 2017

Rant #1,932: Yummy, Yummy, Yummy

What is your favorite fast food establishment?

What is the one fast food restaurant that you just can't live without?

I know, fast food is not good for you at all, yet millions and millions of people frequent these places at least once a week.

They are part of Americana, a part of our social and cultural architecture that you can yell and scream about all you like, but that people seem to love.

This year's American Customer Satisfaction Index, rating fast food establishments on everything from cleanliness to customer service to the type of food they offer, came in with something of a surprise this time around.

For the first time in 20 years, Wendy's does not lead the quickserve burger restaurants on the list.

The chain was unseated at the top by Burger King, whose very nature of not sitting still with its food offerings and always trying something new even if it eventually flops, won over participants in the survey.

Wendy's was still highly rated, coming in right behind BK, but it is kind of an upset that the chain isn't No. 1 anymore.

Chick-fil-A was named the favorite overall quickserve (or as the survey calls them, "limited service") chain, with Panera Bread and Papa John's following closely behind.

Others that ranked highly were Subway; Arby's; Dunkin' Donuts and Chipotle Mexican Grill.

Overall, Burger King was No. 12, Wendy's was at No. 13, and McDonald's was at the bottom of the list at No. 17.

I don't really know what this says about Americans' taste buds, but it appears that people are moving away from beef and moving toward chicken and other non-beef foods, like salads, when they go out to eat.

And no, none of these chains give you change back for your dollar anymore, unless you are looking for change back from a $20 bill.

They aren't cheap, and haven't been for a while, but while people complain about what they offer, to me, they are simply the modern equivalent of the corner diner, candy store or sweet shop of days gone by, places that also didn't offer many "healthy" choices either … but few complained about them.

They exist for a purpose: to feed you when you are on the run, or when you just don't want to cook and can spend a decent amount of money on a meal.

If people really hated them, they would vanish from the American landscape.

And that isn't happening any time soon.

Menus are being adapted for modern tastes, but if you want a hamburger, you can get one.

With a side salad, if you like.

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