The time is 5 pm. It’s getting close to dinnertime. Mom is getting ready to ask the question she’ll soon regret, “What do you want for dinner?”
Five year old Janie wants a hot dog…plain. She might eat tomatoes with it, but they need to be on the side, not on the hot dog.
Her eight-year-old brother Jake wants a burger. His is plain, too. No ketchup, no onions, no cheese. He also wants onion rings. Janie is starting to cry because she hates onion rings and wants french fries. Btw, why does Jake make a big deal about no onions on his hamburger, but must have onion rings?
Mom is starting to freak out. It only gets worse when Dad says he’s been thinking of ribs all day.
See, I told you she was about to be sorry she asked the question. But, then she thinks, all she really wants is a salad. Is there one place nearby where she can get all of this?
Hot dogs, burgers, chicken, ribs, salads, Italian beef, Italian sausage and more. It’s your go-to place for the family that can’t decide what they want for dinner. It’s the go-to place for somewhat upscale fast food.
But, just because you can get it all in one stop doesn’t make it great. Yeah, it’s pretty good; much better than your typical fast-food restaurant, but is Portillo’s overrated?
Don’t get me wrong, I like Portillo’s. I’m there at least twice a month. But, almost everything they have on their menu, you can find better versions of elsewhere…and usually near-by to your home.
If you’re skeptical, here’s an item by item list:Burgers, Fries and Onion rings: While good at Portillo’s are much better at Hackney’s. Italian Beef and Sausages: While good at Portillo’s are better at Al’s or Johnnie’s. Ribs: While good at Portillo’s are much better at Carson’s. Even a simple Hot Dog: While good at Portillo’s is better at Michael’s, Superdawg, Gene and Jude’s and a dozen or more locations.
But…but…but…what about their cakes?
I admit their cakes are delish. The chocolate cake is super moist. The frosting is especially rich. The lemon cake is simultaneously sweet and tart, Once when the lemon cake was off the Portillo’s menu, a friend told me she would do an unmentionable act to anyone who could get her a single piece…ANYONE!!! That’s how good that cake is!
So what we’ve…errr….I’ve determined is the best thing about Portillo’s is you can get a variety of decent food in a single location. Basically, they’re the Old Country Buffet or Golden Corral of the fast food genre. To me, that makes them overrated. Maybe go elsewhere for lunch or dinner and come to Portillo’s for some cake?
But, back to that lemon cake….it’s now on the menu, although it may be a seasonal thing. Does anyone know how to find my lemon cake loving friend? Thanks in advance.