Update: We tried the fries! Check out our review here »
No, that photo above is not from a parallel universe and it wasn't staged. You're really seeing fresh-cut potatoes in Shake Shack digs.
Listen: we love Shake Shack and the transformative effect it's had on the burger scene in New York (and beyond!), but we—among others—have often wondered how a restaurant that prides itself on its freshness and quality of ingredients could choose to serve the crinkle-cut frozen fries they've been using since their inception.
That's why we were so excited when we heard the news this morning from Randy Garutti, the CEO of Shake Shack, that starting this morning at 11 a.m. they would be replacing their frozen fries with fries cooked from fresh hand-cut potatoes.
It's starting out small at only the Upper East Side location, but according to him, "Every new Shack we open will begin to serve them, and it will take us some months to remodel our current kitchens before the switchover from frozen crinkle cuts to fresh fries is complete."
That's no small potatoes!
We're on our way over to the new location as we speak to do a taste test. We'll be back with a full report in the afternoon.
About the author: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is the Chief Creative Officer of Serious Eats where he likes to explore the science of home cooking in his weekly column The Food Lab. You can follow him at @thefoodlab on Twitter, or at The Food Lab on Facebook.