French fries are an American staple. They come in all shapes and forms and fully embody the American diet. In fact, the average American consumes about 29 pounds of French fries each every year.
Whether you dip them in sauces or put them in a sandwich, the savory crunch of a good fry is hard to beat. Since just about all of us devour these tasty treats, we might as well hit up the top eight joints in America that do French fries right:
18. The Original (Pittsburgh, PA)
This fun and busy joint in downtown Pittsburgh has been around since the Pittsburgh Pirates World Series win in the 1960’s. The full name, The Original Hot Dog Shop, can be misleading since French fries are their best selling item. Order a large and I guarantee you will not be able to finish it. Their whopping portions and crispy, salty fries make them a popular place around the University of Pittsburgh campus.
Having eaten here myself, I have to say you cannot pass up the pure history and atmosphere of the place. It has a traditional hotdog counter and old school feel. Come here for a quick meal that will not disappoint.
17. Pommes Frites (New York City, NY)
A tiny, little place on Macdougal Street in NYC, this joint is serving up some seriously authentic Belgian fries. Twice fried to perfection, they can be paired with a wide variety of sauces. Over 25 dipping sauces are offered— everything from pesto mayo and parmesan peppercorn to an Irish curry sauce and wild mushroom mayo.
Crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, these fries are served in paper cones that are often overflowing. You don’t want to miss this extraordinary street food next time you hit up the Big Apple.
16. Le Tub (Hollywood, FL)
This hilariously, unique spot on the Florida coast is a fun experience all-around. It may not necessarily be gourmet food, but you do not want to miss the French fries here. Extra thick-cut and served with the juiciest burger you could ask for, these fries are always satisfying.
It is a former gas station that has been converted with outdoor seating and abstract decorations. In fact, the most popular picture taken here is with their old (but clean) toilets and toilet seats that are plastered around the restaurant.
15. Thrasher’s French Fries (Ocean City, Maryland)
Thrasher’s is a popular boardwalk stop on the Ocean City Amusement Pier that has been around since the 1920’s. They now have three locations throughout Ocean City and band of loyal customers. Their traditional fast-food style fries make the perfect summer snack.
These fries are best eaten with a little vinegar. But beware of seagulls — they like these scrumptious fries almost as much as I do.
14. Eamonn’s A Dublin Chipper (Alexandria, VA)
You do not want to pass up these big, bad fries. As a classic Irish restaurant, Eamonn’s is serving up some tasty fish and chips — with an extra emphasis on the chips. Beware of ordering a large size though; you may want a friend to share the enormous portion with.
The homemade curry sauce is worth the extra charge to order. It pairs perfectly with the salty fries, although some customers admit to eating it as soup. But when something is so darn tasty, you can eat it any way you want.
13. Father’s Office (Los Angeles, CA)
A guilty pleasure you do not want to deny yourself— these fries are served shoestrings style. The serving sizes here are great, as you often get more fries than burger. To you ketchup-dependent people, you may be turned off. They do not offer ketchup with their fries, but it surely does no harm. The fries are deliciously lightly seasoned.
The sweet potato fries here also deserve recognition. Often regarded as one of the best sweet potato fries you can get on the West coast, they are usually ordered with their famous burger. The fries, however, steal the show.
12. AT&T Park (San Francisco, CA)
Another unlikely suspect, this ballpark serves up some seriously delicious fries for Giants fans. The concession stand Gilroy Garlic Fries attract a lot of attention. They are fried to perfection and coated with garlic and parsley. As one of the main attractions at AT&T Park, they are perfection.
Regardless of whether you are a Giants fan or not, a game at this ballpark might be worth the visit if these fries are on the menu. It’s not often you find 5-star fries at a baseball stadium.
11. Blue Duck Tavern (Washington, DC)
These super thick cut French fries almost look like French toast sticks to me, but turn out to be something much better. They go through a three-step cooking process of boiling in water and being fried twice in different oils. The whole process takes nearly 24 hours! Now that’s a fry that is worth paying attention to.
Blue Duck Tavern prides themselves on using local ingredients and resources. They have an open-kitchen layout that creates a unique ambiance for customers. Although there are a plethora of delicious foods to try here, don’t forget to order the side of fries. You will not regret it.
10. Au Cheval (Chicago, IL)
A somewhat unusual, diner-style joint, Au Cheval takes French fries to a whole new level. In the culinary world, “au cheval” means to top a dish with an egg. So basically, this entire restaurant is committed to their eggs. Which is good, because the runny yolk of an over-easy egg is hard to resist on top of fries.
The fries are also served with two dipping sauces: a béchamel and cheese sauce and a garlic aioli. If you thought you have had great French fries before, you are wrong. According to one customer, “the fries are heavenly.”
9. The Boise Fry Company (Boise, Idaho)
The Boise Fry Company offers a wide variety of potato choices for your fry preferences. Not only do they offer russet, purple, Okinawa, and sweet potatoes for your fries, but you can even get Brussel sprouts. They also offer several cuts of fries, including shoestring, homestyle, or curly fries (to indulge your inner child).
The fries, along with the burgers, are hard to beat. The Boise Fry Company has several locations throughout Boise and opened their first location in Portland, Oregon as well. After all, Idaho is the potato state, so they have to live up to their expectations.
8. Potato Patch (West Mifflin, PA)
The Potato Patch is located in an amusement park named Kennywood. They serve up traditional fast food French fries with the most basic toppings. Yes, there are rides and games here, but the fries make the park worth the visit. Some even say it is the best thing about the park, and I cannot disagree.
Kennywood is one of my favorite amusement parks and the Potato Patch is a guarantee for every one of my family visits. The line may look overwhelming, but it moves quickly and well worth the wait. The secret here is that the fries are fresh cut immediately before being dropped in the fryer.
7. Aquitaine Wine Bistro (San Fransisco, CA)
Aquitaine is not the most suspecting place to find good French fries. Customers come here for the wine but stay for the fries. They even serve their fries in a shoe. Yep, you read that right. A large wooden clog that adds a little spunk to their presentation.
Aquitaine tops their fries with paprika. The spice is just enough to give the fries a little extra flavor and makes them that much more addicting. This place is one of the hidden gems of San Fran.
6. Luc (Seattle, WA)
Luc is an French-American bar located in the heart of Seattle. They serve up a unique twist on fries — soufflé potato crisps. They require a very special technique to make. They are poached in oil and then deep-fried until they puff up. In fact, the chef here made every batch himself for the first three months they were on the menu because they were so difficult to master.
The torch has since been passed down, but the quality of these fries remains remarkable. The restaurant employs a dedicated fry guy who comes in just to prep the potato every day. There are no words to describe these fries other than “order them!”
5. Saus (Boston, MA)
Saus is a small Belgian-style spot that serves up incredible fries. They offer over 15 signature dipping sauces ranging from truffle ketchup to bacon parm, which is my personal favorite. They even have a Green Monster sauce that pays tribute to their hometown and is made with jalapeños, habañeros, fresh cilantro, and garlic.
And you can’t forget the poutine here. Poutine is a traditional Belgian dish of fries topped with gravy and cheese curds. Additional toppings like a fried egg, mushrooms, or pork belly can also be added.
4. Nola (New Orleans, LA)
Emeril Lagasse is the owner and chef at Nola Restaurant. Located in the heart of the French Quarter, Emeril is offering a unique dining experience at this three-story eatery. The time and attention put into the fries here does the trick. Perfectly crunchy and perfectly seasoned, these fries pair well with the wide array of dishes Nola serves up.
You may not necessarily associate New Orleans with French fries, but this restaurant may cause a change of mind.
3. Hyde Park Bar & Grill (Austin, TX)
Hyde Park Bar & Grill is the place in Texas to go to for French fries. Their signature fries are made with a buttermilk batter and served with their signature sauce, sometimes also called “crack sauce.” These fries can be addicting and filling, but so worth it.
The overall atmosphere is a comfortable, Southern feel. They offer other traditional Southern dishes and their weekend brunch is a must as well. This restaurant may force me to take a trip to Austin.
2. Balthazar (New York City, NY)
With the abundance of food choices in NYC, Balthazar is a must-have. It is a quaint, French-style brasserie with all the traditional French favorites, yet serves up unexpectedly exceptional fries. The pommes frites are served with several of their main courses, although they end up holding their own.
These fries are first blanched in peanut oil to cook the inside of the potato, but not crisp out the outside. They are then fried crispy upon order. They are tossed with imported French sea salt to finish. Balthazar has special prep cooks with the sole job of making these fries.
And they sure do a good job. These fries come pretty darn close to perfection, accordingly to Food Network chef and restaurant owner Bobby Flay. After all, they are called French fries for a reason.
1. Duck Fat (Portland, ME)
Duck Fat is easily one of my favorite French fry spots. It is a small, European-style sandwich shop that serves up some unique choices. In case the name doesn’t give it away, their hand-cut fries are fried in duck fat. This method definitely adds a special kick to the fries, along with their speciality dipping sauces.
Garlic mayo, truffle ketchup, and lemon-herb mayo make the fries extra tasty, although in my opinion, the fries don’t need it the sauce. They are great all by themselves. Duck Fat’s charming environment and French fries are reason enough for me to make a day trip to Portland. I would probably even request their French fries as a last meal.