There’s nothing more classic then the American Drive-In. These are a dying breed, slowly being replaced by Five Guys or Shake Shack.
All-American Drive In stands alone in Massapequa, Long Island. The classic institution sticks out like a sore thumb, across street from a modern America strip mall complete with a Starbucks and Frozen Yogurt spot.
Inside, the place looks like it hasn’t changed much in the past few decades with the exception of the prices. Still unbelievably low, with cheeseburgers costing no more then $2.50, you feel like you’re back in a different time.
If you want a burger, you have limited options, and don’t even think about requesting any alternations to the burger. You can choose cheese or no cheese. That’s it. Even a ketchup hater like myself has to suck it up if I want to enjoy the Quarter Pound Burger with Cheese.
Snag a seat outside with your distinct white bag and remove the contents. It looks eerily familiar to something you would find at McDonalds, with the reflective bag describing and holding the contents of your meal.
It’s kind of meal I’d never order unless it was a special occasion, in a unique place. Somehow here, the bagged burger and sweet soda seemed to significantly more appealing, and in fact, delicious. All-American serves their burgers the same way across the board, the way fast food was meant to be served; fast. A thin patty, served medium with a layer of American cheese topped with pickles, diced onions and ketchup sandwiched between a lightly toasted sesame bun.
Although I haven’t had a fast food burger in decades, All-American sets the bar unreasonably high. The patty is juicy and flavorful, with the right ratio of condiments not trying to mask the burger underneath.
The real star happens to be the fries. The ridiculously crispy and golden, without any oily residue on the outside. Grain mustard on the side, served in a plastic cup enhances the fries. This is where All-American distinguishes itself from the mainstream fast food chains, real potatoes, real taste.
If you happen to find yourself driving down Merrick Road in Massapequa, keep your eyes open for the bright red, white and blue signs of All-American and the numerous Harley Davidson Motorcycles parked out front. Park your car, transport back to nostalgic time of drive-ins, grab a burger and some fries and you’ll leave really fun, and really happy.
All-American Drive In – 4286 Merrick Road – Massapequa, NY
All-American Drive In
Location: Massapequa, Long Island, NY
Type: American (Traditional)
Perfect For: Neighborhood Hang, Quick Bite, Cheap Eats, Take Out, Outdoor Seating
Reservations: Not Accepted
Favorite Dishes: Quarter Pound Burger with Cheese; Fries