The French Fry Rankings
I got into a never resolved drunken argument with a buddy last week, and since I have a public forum and he doesn’t, I’ll now get the final, definitive word (in your face, GW!)
My picks for the best french fries by style.
1. The Curly Fry (seasoned or not)–Clearly the king of french fried pertaters (mmmhhh) the coiled shape produces splendid crevices for oil collection–much like the ruffled potato chip–creating a thicker, crisper, and more flavorful fry. Coated with a flawless blend of hot spicy seasonings only makes these more sublime. Throw in a cheese or mayonnaise based dipping sauce, and the seasoned curly becomes a work of art, though I will admit that the curly is not the sturdiest for the actual act of dipping.
2. The Fresh Cut Fry–A much underrated fry that people rarely ask for by name yet are always excited to see on their plate, these are the most often served fry variant at finer pubs and burger joints or places that actually have chefs. The smoky potato skin still remaining on the fry itself, for some reason these just seem fresher, even healthier, perhaps even fancy foreign (Belgian pomme frites).
3. The Waffle Fry (seasoned or not), aka the Criss Cut Fry–The most varying in quality of any fry mentioned on this list, this style can be absolutely sublime or disgustingly terrible. It all depends on how hot they are and how correctly fried they are. Whereas most fries remain similar in taste as they cool, the waffle fry becomes less and less edible in a ridiculously quick pace. These demand going straight from the hot deep fryer into your face within minutes, ignore your burger as there’s no time to spare. Likewise, sometimes the waffle design’s countless crevices, if not monitored properly, collect so much oil and seasonings that it becomes a misshapen hockey puck of breaded yuckiness. Another great fry for dipping what with its very sturdy design, the only problem arises when the idiotic restaurant presents you with ketchup or sauce in a tub with too small of radius to actually cram a fry into.
4. The Shoe String Fry–The style of fry served by basically all fast food restaurants, these are rarely not good. Simple, abundantly greasy and salty, what’s not to love? They won’t blow you away, but never will they disappoint either.
5. The Potato Wedge–A rarely utilized fry variant, this often seasoned style is always crispy on the outside and full of flavor. Problems arise when undercooked, though this style rarely is.
6. The Sweet Potato Fry–Another hit or miss fry style, at its best this variant is a nice, delicious change of pace. At its worst, it’s still a french fry packed with fucking vitamins. Seriously. B6, C, and beta-carotene. The biggest issue with this style is that it absolutely demands a dipping sauce while seeming to cool much quicker than normal potato fries.
7. The Crinkle Cut Fry–The retarded cousin to the curly fry, I’m not sure if these accordion shaped monstrosities are actually served at a single restaurant in the world. They seem to be solely owned by the frozen food conglomerates of the world. In theory, these fries should work due to my aforementioned mention of the creviced collection areas as brilliantly employed by curly fries, waffle fries, and ruffled potato chips, but in this instance it simply doesn’t come together. Perhaps because they are always prepared by your drunk uncle at a family BBQ and, of course, without the usage of a deep fryer. Perpetually soggy, undercooked, and under-salted, these suck fries evoke memories of elementary school cafeteria meals.
8. The Steak Fry–BY FAR the worst fry variant, if I see this as a “comes-with-a-side-of” on a menu, I always ask for a swap to onion rings, tater tots, hell, even fruit salad. Never cooked properly, steak fries are like tiny, skinless baked potatoes. Each bite yields far too much chalky, flavorless potato interior and far too little fried grease. You know why we eat baked potatoes slathered with butter and sour cream and shredded cheese and bacon bits? Because a potato by itself kinda fucking sucks. And so do steak fries, arguably the only french fry that no one is excited to get, the only french fry left standing on a plate at the end of a meal as none of your friends will even “help” you finish your order.
So that’s my list. What’s your order of styles? Did I miss any variants?
The funniest thing is, I think I kinda prefer fresh, greasy onion rings over all of the above.
Ale to the Chief
8.75% from a bomber
My friend Derek hooked me up with this special release from the Colorado brewer commemorating the recent Presidential election (Did I miss that one? Who won?). Citrusy with an abundance of cascade hops and honey malt which gave it a nice creamy sweetness which truly make this beer exemplary. I tell you, just a half year ago I would have told you that Avery is nothing more than a mid-level brewery based on what I had imbibed from them, but lately–what with Maharaja, their Russian River collaberation, and especially Mephistopheles’ Stout–they have absolutely been knocking it out of the fucking park. What a sublime beermaker.
Here’s what the beer’s faux-parchment label read:
“Ale to the Chief! We the Brewers of Avery Brewing Company, in order to form a more perfect ale, require new leadership that can liberate us from our quagmires in foreign lands; embrace environmentally sound energy alternatives to imported oil; heal our ailing healthcare system; free us from tyrannical debt and resurrect the collapsing dollar. We hereby pledge to provide him with an ample amount of our Presidential Pale Ale to support in the struggle for the aforementioned goals! Hail to the New Chief!”