Thursday, December 18, 2014

Whole Foods Prepared Foods Review II

It doesn't get much busier than Whole Foods at Foggy Bottom. Expect long lines to pay for your groceries, and more than a bit of luck finding a seat during the lunch or dinner rush. Lucky for me, I came in only for a hot Burger and Fries from WF's Prepared Foods area in the back.

Ordering is a breeze, thanks to a row of order kiosks. You can even pay for your food at the kiosk, leaving you with only a short wait for your food to be prepared. Once your name is announced, you can pick up your order at the appropriate station; but color me impressed at their text message notification, which allowed me to stake out a hard-to-find table beforehand. Even though she was busy, the woman who assembled my order stopped to say hello and wish me well. Bravo!

French Fries

Prices are quite reasonable, almost in line with the nearby cafeteria at George Washington University Hospital (but demonstrably tastier.) A double patty burger with raw onions and tomatoes cost only $6, while an order of Hand-cut Fries set me back an additional two bucks. FYI, you can outfit your burgers anyway you like 'em... on the aforementioned kiosk. Burgers are cooked WELL-DONE, which is OK but not ideal: It would be great to be able to customize doneness in the future. In regards to taste, it reminded me a little of Five Guys (right down to its aluminum foil wrapping.) No complaints.

The fries (skin on) looked amazing but lacked seasoning. They were also a little overdone, and miles from crispy. Still, for only $2, it's hard to complain too much. Besides, isn't that what ketchup is for?
Dining in, is far from comfortable... especially at 12:30 on a weekday afternoon. The front of house is very, very loud; and there are lots of people pushing/rushing by your seat. Proceed with caution.

Would I order the same thing again? Sure, why not. It's hard to beat the price; and the food quality is good, not great. It's not as good as Bobby's Burger Palace or BTS (both, less than a couple of blocks away) but it sure is convenient. Sounds good to me.

Atmosphere: D (Crowded and loud. Order "take away" if possible.)
Burger: B- (Double patties, generous toppings.)
Fries: C (Good looks, average taste. Grab a salt packet.)
Service: B (Kiosk is easy-to-navigate and efficient. Nice cooks.)
Value: B
Overall: B-/C+ (C+ if you eat in, B- to go.)