Mooyah Burgers and Fries, a relatively new burger franchise that is kind of a weak imitation of Five Guys, just opened in Hartford, in the Food Court at State House Square. Lynnafred and I checked them out for lunch today.
We got there a little after noon and the line was about 25 people deep. It took us about half an hour to move through the line. This was not the fault of the people taking orders - Mooyah had two registers going and the friendly folks ringing up orders were moving customers through as quickly as they could.
If you've ever been to Five Guys, you'll find Mooyah quite familiar. Mooyah isn't even subtle about aping practically everything about that other red-shirted hamburger joint, so for me to point out every little detail would get tiresome. Let's skip right to the food.
Left to right: Mooyah Burger, regular fries, "shake", another Mooyah Burger in front of a large Coke Zero.
The first thing Lynnafred and I noticed was that the burgers are actually smaller than other "premium" fast food burgers. They look huge - like Five Guys or Red Robin huge - but they're not. Mooyah uses smaller buns than the other guys, so their generously-sized burgers look more massive than they really are. Clever, eh? Until you go to pick up that sloppy-ass pile of grease and melted cheese and the whole thing slides around inside the bun as you try to grip and bite it, and it plops into your lap.
Mooyah's fries are completely unremarkable. Have you had unpeeled potatoes cut into strips and fried before? Yeah me too. Most of the time they haven't been as soggy at the ones at Mooyah, though. And even Wendy's has mostly long, intact fries dusted with sea salt. We got a cup of little fragments that were seasoned with disappointment and broken dreams.
Lynnafred liked her Oreo shake, though it was in fact soft-serve ice cream over a mound of crushed cookies and hit with the stick blender until still not soft enough to drink. She ended up eating it with a spoon since the straws provided were so small in diameter that they proved impossible to use.
If I were a "ratings" kinda guy, I'd give Mooyah about a five out of ten. But I'm not, so I'll just say that I might eat there again if I got a flat tire right in front of them, at lunch time, and had to wait an hour for the tow truck, and Burger King were more than a fifteen minute walk away.