Zagat survey reveals the best food items at chain restaurants.
Wendy’s, Subway and Papa Murphy’s offer some of the best fast food in the nation, according to the 2012 Zagat Fast-Food Survey -- the result of 10,554 voters who weighed in on their favorite chain restaurants.
The Zagat Survey has been around since 1979, when Tim and Nina Zagat surveyed their friends about New York restaurants. Acquired by Google in May, it now includes respondents from 70 cities and rates everything from hotels and airlines to golf courses and zoos. But it is American restaurants that Zagat is most notable for, with the Fast-Food Survey added to the research just a few years ago.
Diners participating in this year’s survey (http://blog.zagat.com/2012/09/2012-fast-food-survey-results-are-live.html) said they eat at fast-food joints 5.8 times a month and at full-service eateries 3.6 times monthly. That’s 1.2 million chain meals per year.
Based on all of that gustatory experience, respondents said Wendy’s has the best food of all the “mega” chains (more than 5,000 U.S. locations). That’s followed, in order, by Subway, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell and Burger King. Of the “large” chains (100 to 5,000 U.S. outlets), In-N-Out Burger has the best grub, followed by Papa Murphy’s, Chipotle, Panera Bread and Bojangles’.
Although the survey also focused on décor, service and chain popularity, I’m sticking with the food here. Where can I get the most tasty menu items? Survey said. . .
Best burgers: In order, Five Guys, Wendy’s, Burger King, In-N-Out Burger, Fuddruckers.
Best breakfast sandwiches: McDonald’s, Burger King, Panera Bread, Chick-fil-A, Dunkin’ Donuts.
Best ice cream/custard: Rita’s Italian Ice, Ben & Jerry’s, Haagen-Dazs, Culver’s, Baskin-Robbins.
Best milkshakes: Steak ‘n Shake, In-N-Out Burger, Ben & Jerry’s, Dairy Queen, Haagen-Dazs.
Best coffee: Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts, McDonald’s, Caribou Coffee, Peet’s Coffee and Tea.
Best french fries: McDonald’s, Five Guys, Burger King, Wendy’s, Chick-fil-A.
Best fish: Long John Silver’s, Captain D’s Seafood, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King.
Best fried chicken: KFC, Popeye’s, Church’s Chicken, Bojangles’, Culver’s.
Best wings: Buffalo Wild Wings, KFC, Pizza Hut, Domino’s Pizza, Zaxby’s.
Best grilled chicken: Chick-fil-A, El Pollo Loco, Panera Bread, Wendy’s, McDonald’s.
Best pizza: Papa Murphy’s, Papa John’s, Little Caesars.
Best sandwiches: Firehouse Subs, Jason’s Deli, Jimmy John’s.
Full-service restaurants also were rated. The best food at those venues, according to the survey, can be had at Cheddar’s. That’s followed by O’Charley’s, Bonefish Grill, Original Pancake House and BJ’s Restaurant/Brewhouse.
Most of these chains have an outlet in Springfield. Feel free to do your own research.
Kathryn Rem can be reached at 788-1520 or firstname.lastname@example.org.