It all started as Danny Meyer’s food cart in Madison Square Park for an art installation in 2004. Now, it’s a national phenomenon with stores all over New York and in Florida, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Washington DC and internationally. How are we only getting one now?
This Saturday, our Shake Shack opened on Route 17 South in Paramus.
It has eco-friendly design touches such as walls made from red oak salvaged from a local NJ barn, tabletops made from reclaimed bowling alley lanes, and FSC-certified chairs and booths.
But, we’re not going there for the tables, right?
We’re there for the frozen custard shakes and concretes. Shake Shack’s frozen custard uses real sugar, no HFCS and milk from dairy farmers who don’t use artificial growth hormones. The shakes are delicious and not as calorie-heavy as you’d think. But, the thing that really makes the custard sing is the concrete. They take a cup of custard and add different kinds of sauces and mix-ins and then whip them together. The first custard picture above is the Shack Attack and it was fantastically delicious. Chocolate custard, fudge sauce, chocolate truffle cookie dough and Mast Brothers Shake Shack dark chocolate chunks, topped with chocolate sprinkles. If you like dark chocolate (and I do) then you have to try this one, too. It was so dark and rich. Dessert perfection in a little cup.
Of course, there are the burgers, too.
The regular Shack Burger comes with lettuce, tomato, cheese and Shack Sauce. The meat is a special blend of Angus beef raised with no antibiotics and no hormones. Honestly, it is on par with Bucu burgers (which, sadly, has closed in December 2013.) and BoomBurger in Rochelle Park. Not better and not worse than what’s out there in Bergen County already, just another higher-end burger entry.
A really good topping choice for your burger is the Smoke Shack. A cheeseburger topped with all-natural applewood smoked bacon, chopped cherry pepper and ShackSauce, this burger was spicy and smoky.
We also get fresh-cut fries at the Paramus location. Yum! If there’s anything that Shake Shack has gotten dinged for before it was their frozen crinkle-cut fries. They’ve started moving toward fresh-cut double-fried french fries.
The cheese sauce is especially worth looking into. It’s a mix of American and Cheddar cheeses and it’s really great. I was tempted to even lick the little cardboard boat for more cheese. It was that good.
We also got a Shack-cago Dog which is a Vienna beef dog with Rick’s Picks Shack relish, onion, cucumber, pickle, tomato, sport pepper, celery salt and mustard. The dog is split down the middle so it made more room for toppings. More restaurants need to split their dogs!
One thing we noticed about the staff is how friendly they all were. That’s so important in a market that’s so crowded with lots of higher-end burger places. Little things like friendliness and a good dessert might make me go to Shake Shack over another place that isn’t as fun.
Another great thing about the Shake Shack is their focus on community.
Head on over to Paramus’ new Shake Shack and tell them that we sent you!
479 Route 17 South (Between Midland & Ridgewood Aves), Paramus
Open daily, from 11 AM – 11 PM
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