Nation's Giant Hamburgers: 317 Broadway in Oakland
Cost: $5.30 (bacon cheeseburger, fries extra)
Image Source: blogger's own
In all my qualified years of burger surveying and burger research, I've definitely noticed some strong, loyal fans of Nation's Giant Burgers in the Bay Area. Nation's has been around for a while, and although I never experienced first-hand the early years, I do recognize that they were possibly once great (with limited competition), but expansion has led their TQM to suffer. The same comparison can be drawn from In-N-Out's success. Although I'm a huge fan, I can't expect every burger flipper in uniform to carry the same dedication as someone who's devoted their whole life, flipping burgers and managing the quality standards for positive reviews, good ratings and consequently good business.
Verdict: First of all, I'm not a huge fan of the packaged burger upon presentation. Even though I specified to dine-in, I still get a completely wrapped burger on a tray. Although I don't stage my burgers, you'll just have to trust me that I didn't snatch a few fries between receiving my order and unwrapping the burger for photo-documentation.
The proportions and assemblage of the burger just weren't to my liking. 96% percent of the time, the lettuce is on the outside next to the bun, in order to properly sheath the bun from burger juices. The Nation's burger instead had an onion slice, seven tomato slices and a chunky lettuce bunch, and ghetto-crappy mayonnaise that overwhelms the proportions. I could go on, but for the record - I've eaten at a few different Nation's in the Bay Area and they all suck, they all suck big time.