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Douglas County Mystery Diner

Venturing to Tuscola on a recent week day, I decided to give the new Hardee’s a try.  Having worked at Hardee’s at MarketPlace Mall and on University Avenue in Urbana when I was in high school for a former Marine, Les, and his wife Barb, I know what an excellent experience looks like.  Unfortunately, for reasons unknown, this wasn’t that sort of experience.  A long wait in the drive through led to cold fries, which led to an overall pedestrian experience.  Of course, one less than great experience will never stop me from giving a place a second chance, so hopefully this was just ‘one of those days.’

Due to pandemic restrictions, the restaurant is open for drive through or carry out only, and seeing only two cars in front of me, I felt comfortable staying in the car for the order, and I went with an old stand-by, a Mushroom and Swiss Burger and Fries, with a real coca cola, but I had to wait for approximately 10 minutes to get my food. 

Now onto the grades.
Portion Size:  a regular order of fries and a quarter pound burger were perfect.  4 out of 4 fat guys

Value:  $9 for a burger and fries seems a bit much to a guy who used to dish them out for $1.25, but those 35-year-old prices are gone for good.  3.5 fat guys

Friendliness:  The girl apologized to me for my wait, which is good, but failed to give me napkins or ketchup.  2.75 fat guys

Flavor:  The fries were cold, as I said, probably from having to wait in the holding rack for too long while the burger was being prepared.  The burger, with loads of swiss and that magical mushroom sauce, was just as I remembered it, awesome.  Have to go with a 3.5 because of the fries, though. 

Overall Score:  3.475 out of 4 fat guys.  Not their best performance, but also not so egregious as to not warrant a repeat visit.  One other thing I found strange is that after leaving the drive-thru you basically have to do a U-turn to exit the premises.  I would have thought that there would be more than one exit from the Love’s facility.

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