Name of Item: Classic Milk Shake
Chain/Brand: Steak and Shake
Price: $2.50 for a regular, $3.50 for a large.
Nitty Gritty: The large comes in a particularly nifty plastic cup, but either way you get a glass of creamily smooth milkshake, made up from real ice cream, not pre-mix. Whipped cream tops it (even for take out) and every shake gets it's own cherry garnish.
Optional Steps: They recently started a deal where for an extra dollar, hot fudge will be added to the shake. If you've got the bill, go for it! I'll explain why later. Otherwise, the whipped cream and cherries can be removed at request, and 'deluxe' shake flavors can add strawberries, chocolate chips, or oreo cookie bits.
Aroma: 6:If you get them in the restaurant as opposed to take out, you get a very rich, cool scent, dominated by the particular flavor of the shake. If you put a straw into your take-out cup, you'll get a bit of the same, but not quite.
Fillingness: I'd give this a 4. It's not supposed to fill you up if you eat it alone, but it does a nice job of settling in with a Steakburger and some onion rings. If eaten just for itself, it's pleasant, but not a complete appetite ruiner.
Mouthfeel: 8. These are very cool, rich, and very smooth. If ordered with the hot fudge, it also has a very nice change in texture, as the fudge tends to be warm and sticky enough to contrast, but not hot enough to take away from the shake.
Taste: 8: For my money, Steak and Shake does the best shakes you can get from a fast food place. There's a certain creamy body that the hand dipped ice cream gives, and even the basic vanilla is quite tasty. In fact, a plain vanilla eaten with the meal can be a surprisingly good palette cleanser. And their recent addition of the hot fudge option takes them to a whole different level. It's like getting to drink a really good hot fudge sundae, regardless of which base flavor you're enjoying. A perfect dessert, or a fun compliment to a meal.
Value: 5: The one downside is that these guys are PRICEY. A large with fudge costs as much as a loaded up steakburger or chicken sandwhich, unless you purchase it as part of a combo, in which case they bring the price down to about $7 for the entire combo.
Serving Suggestions: Shake + Steakburger or Double + Onion Rings = Meal Satisfaction. I also strongly reccomend the Hot Fudge if you like chocolate. It takes a good thing and makes it even better.
Additional Thoughts: I save these guys as a special treat for me, especially when on road trips, since that's when I can get best access to S&S franchises. And if you order it in the sit down restaurant rather than take out, they give you a serving that's rather nice to share with your date for the night. They're quite a bit better than the McDonald's Triple-rich shakes, or Wendy's Frosty. Burger King's shakes can match some of the texture, but the flavor doesn't stand up. The only downside to these is the price, and the fact that S&S franchises tend to either be off major highway exits, or in downtown metro areas, which can make them a bit hard to reach.
Final Grade: 6. A great treat or part of a meal, but expensive enough to make you think twice before you do it.