Review: 7×7 Steakburger from Steak ‘n Shake

It’s 4:45 on a dark, rainy Saturday morning.  Why is my alarm clock going off? I should be sleeping now. Did I set it by accident? Oh yeah, it’s waking me up so I can drive down to Steak ‘n Shake and try their 7×7 Steakburger. The new Up All Night menu has me up before the crack of dawn to grab what any red-blooded American would obviously want to start their day with; a full pound of beef and melted cheese. Sarcasm is just as effective as caffeine, you know.7x7 Steak n ShakeSteak ‘n Shake describes the 7×7 Steakburger like this:

It’s 7 Steakburgers™ and 7 slices of American cheese- a one pounder!

Two weeks ago, I tried to order the 7×7. Even though I offered to pay any price, Steak ‘n Shake told me no deal. The burger is only available between midnight and 6am. This is why I was awake at such an ungodly hour. After finally getting up, to my car, on the freeway, and arriving at Steak ‘n Shake, I was ready to meet this beast head on. Now the easy part was over. That last sentence was foreshadowing, if you couldn’t tell. After parking my car and walking inside I notice something, there is no one here. And I don’t just mean customers, but staff as well. After waiting to be seated for about ten minutes to no avail, I decide to wander around the restaurant. No one in the kitchen. No one in the dining room. Hell, there wasn’t even anyone in the mens room. So naturally I did what anyone would do, I started taking pictures of this ghost restaurant. For a minute I thought that was all I would be able to contribute to the review.Steak n ShakeFinally I saw a server. Though she just ran past me and out a side door, hopped into a running car and drove off. At this point I start to wonder if I had walked into the store post-robbery and the staff had all been murdered and tossed in the walk-in. Thankfully, that wasn’t the case, and another server drinking coffee came out from the back of the restaurant. He gave me a wave signaling that someone would help me soon. Oddly enough, that was the last time I would ever see him, or any server for that matter. Shortly after that, a cook came out from the bowels of Steak ‘n Shake, sat me and took my order. What planet have I landed on, I thought to myself. Was this all a weird dream? About this time it was quarter to 6am and more customers started to show up. Unbeknownst to me, Steak ‘n Shake is an early bird, senior citizen haven. Nothing wrong with that, but this empty restaurant had quickly changed into a bunch of old people with canes and walkers roaming the front of the store. The cook quickly sat everyone and gave them coffee. Where was the server? Surprisingly, the cook then quickly showed up with my order. I’d forgotten I was even here to review a novelty burger, and thought I had stumbled into some kind of odd, fast food Silent Hill.  So how was it? I’ll be damned but the burger was awesome. Stupid, but awesome. 7x7 SteakburgerThe seven Steakburger patties and seven slices of cheese formed this melty, beefy, self-basting tower of delicious. It was hot, drippy, messy and pretty much everything one could ask for in a burger. I was also really impressed with how fresh the lettuce, tomato and onion were. I had no room for them on my sandwich, but kudos for that. lto and picklesSteak ‘n Shake’s patties are pretty small, so don’t go thinking this is some mammoth burger that belongs in a food challenge. It isn’t. Imagine a McDouble with seven burger patties and you should get the idea of how big this is. At $7.77 it’s a tremendous value as well. Plus, it comes with fries. I failed to receive my fries, but even still, it’s worth the money.7x7 BurgerNormally this is where I would wrap up my review, but there is more. When the cook delivered my food, the server tray it was carried on was disgusting. Underneath my plate sat old fries, bits of lettuce, crumbs, various sauce spills and wet spots. Usually I would refuse my food and get the hell out of there, but I’ve never seen anything like that before. I’m kind of stumped as to what to even say about it. If the server tray was that foul, one can only imagine what lurks in the rest of the place. When I went to pay, there was a problem. No money in the cash drawer. The cook ( yes, I’m still being waited on by him) says to hold on for a second as he runs to the back. A FEW MINUTES LATER, the manager shows up to deal with the problem. After fumbling around she comes to the same conclusion, THERE IS NO MONEY IN THE TILL. She then runs to the back and comes back with a fresh ten dollar bill as change for my $20. There is still one more problem, I need smaller bills so I can tip. She finally runs to the back again, grabs smaller bills, hands them to me, I leave a tip and leave as fast as possible.

Steak 'n Shake 7x7 BurgerWhy was this review such a pain in the ass? My Five Guy’s theory pretty much covers this one. It states that the farther one is away from a restaurants place of origin, the more inconsistencies one finds. I love Five Guys and have for years, but my local shop was the fifth one built. I remember when they dared to travel 35 miles south and opened that store. The quality has always been on par with the original store just outside of DC. They have since expanded all over the country and people seem to have some quality issues outside of this area. People say they don’t understand the hype, and I’m guessing it’s because the founders from Northern Virginia can’t keep tabs on what their franchisees are doing on the other side of the country. In-N-Out refuses to expand east beyond west Texas for this exact reason. I loved In-N-Out as a kid and every time I travel back home to California, it’s just as great as I remember. If there was one in JFK International, who knows how the quality would suffer. When I did my first Steak ‘n Shake review last year, I caught a lot of flak for giving it a just par rating. I’m sure if you’re in the midwest, where Steak ‘n Shake is from, it’s great. But here in Virginia, where we only have two separated by 50 miles, and the next closest is hundreds of miles away, it’s pretty weak. Sure my 7×7 was great, and if you aren’t in VA I say check it out, but I cannot in good conscience tell anyone to go to the VA location. Phew, I feel better with that off my chest. While this gets my award for worst review to write ever, you might be surprised at the scores. I did love the burger.

Pros: Really great burger. Excellent value. Less of a novelty than a Doritos Locos Taco.

Cons: I just want to order tasty food, take pics, eat and then leave. Why couldn't I do that? Is that too much to ask for? It also sucks that this burger is only available from midnight to 6am.

Taste: 9.25/10
Value: 9.75/10
Grubbing on-the-go: Optional. Have at it if you want to cause a pileup.
Price: $7.77

Overall GrubGrade: 9.50/10

More Info: http://www.SteaknShake.com
Nutrition Facts:
Calories - 1330
Total Fat - 98 grams
Saturated Fat - 45 grams
Cholesterol - 290 milligrams
Sodium - 4490 milligrams
Carbs - 34 grams
Dietary Fiber - 1 gram
Sugars - 6 grams
Protein - 74 grams
 

37 comments on “Review: 7×7 Steakburger from Steak ‘n Shake

  1. Dave says:

    LOLOL!!! Great review!!! I wonder why they were all in the back. Playing poker, perhaps?

  2. Anon says:

    Is 7 Steak’n Shake patties even a pound of meat?

  3. Ryan says:

    You only YOLO once.

    Thanks for taking this on Chef.

  4. sortov says:

    Boy you out cho damn mind

  5. M86 says:

    Hmmmm… None of the Steak N Shakes in my area are open 24 hours. I guess I’ll be missing out.

  6. Annie Benson says:

    I can confirm that here in Eastern Missouri Steak n Shake is pretty awesome. Clean restaurant, reasonably fast service, and they rarely mess up an order. So, if you ever happen to pass through St. Louis, give one a try.

  7. John says:

    I think your Five Guys theory is probably right on. I live in the Steak n’ Shake motherland of Central Illinois and it’s perfectly cooked and assembled every time with no service or cleanliness issues.

  8. scott says:

    you couldnt stay up past midnight on a saturday?

    completely confused by this review

  9. rob says:

    Both the burger and the review are epic.

  10. Cory says:

    Creepy experience.

    And frankly, them forgetting your fries would be a big sin in my book. That’s something I’d have a hard time letting go, even if I had to take half the fod home.

    Good looking burger, though. I’d probably knife and fork that mamma jamma.

  11. Dave says:

    You say, “Imagine a McDouble with seven burger patties”… I’m pretty sure this is WAY bigger than how a McDouble would look with 7. Just sayin’…

  12. IowaGal82 says:

    Looks so good!!! :P Guess I need to give em a go!

  13. Jeff in Middletucky says:

    I’m sure if you’re in the midwest, where Steak ‘n Shake is from, it’s great.

    Then again, maybe not. I live in Ohio, and have had Steak ‘n Shakes around me for as far back as I can remember. I think their food, especially their burgers, are damn good. But I couldn’t tell when the last time I dined in one was, because their service, at every single location around here, is notoriously, operatically horrid. Since I first found out that this new burger exists, I’ve had an inkling to give it a try, but I haven’t (and likely won’t) because I’ve a sneaking suspicion that my experience will turn out much the same as yours … or worse.

  14. Dustin says:

    AWESOME REVIEW, CHEF! There’s a Steak N Shake directly across the street from my favorite bar. May have to take this beast on after some liquid courage one night.

  15. Clevegal42 says:

    I think your “outside the quality radius” theory is correct. I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve been to my local Steak N Shake because the service is awful and the restaurant is perpetually disgusting. I moved to southern Ohio from Cleveland 10 years ago and while the ones in Cleveland weren’t perfect they are 100% better than the ones I’ve been to south of Columbus.

  16. missouri says:

    “I’m sure if you’re in the midwest, where Steak ‘n Shake is from, it’s great.”

    And you’d be wrong. The one consistent thing S&S has going for them is the ickyness factor. They are all dirty and greasy feeling – but perhaps there is a market out there for that.

    • Sascha says:

      If there’s one thing I’ve never encountered, it’s a dirty Steak n’ Shake. Sure, most of them could use an update in the bathrooms, but at least it’s always been cleaned well, while the dining room and kitchen have always been spotless, and I’ve probably been to about 40-50 SnS’s from all over Florida up to the Midwest.

      • Camielle says:

        It isn’t the cleanliness of the bathrooms I have had a problem with, but the smell! It must be some kind of cleaner or air freshener, I do not know, but it makes me gag! it is the only downside I have about Steak n’ Shake.

  17. Dan says:

    I disagree w/ the Five Guys theory. I live in MN,which is pretty far from the DC area. I’ve been to 3 different Five Guys here, and each one i’ve always had excellent food from. Granted, ive never been to the DC-area locations, so I can’t compare it to those, but ive never had any issues with the locations here.

  18. Jonathan Wayne says:

    Ha Ha, this review was hilarious. You certainly seem to have been in the twilight zone at this place. This is definitely a drunk burger and I would definitely try it. Maybe it was a robbery and the real workers were locked up in the back and the robbers were pretending to be workers?

    I disagree with the Five Guys theory, I have eaten at them all over the country and they have al been great and consistent.

  19. T.J. says:

    Not knowing any better, the first time I ever went to one I had a single-patty burger. I of course hated it and probably never would have gone back, but this location started sending my coupons and I gave it another chance, thankfully they have been redeemed.

  20. Mark says:

    Steak n Shake used to be a late night option for me, but encountered the same issues with poor service and cleanliness at the Airport Blvd. location in Pensacola. Greasy and unclean tables and utensils, torn upholsterery, and service that virtually ignores you. On my last visit, there were probably 5 tables of people sitting and waiting for service and no one eating. I gave up on the place. It’s my hope that Steak n Shake reads this blog and takes corrective measures, because I don’t know how a business can survive such a blantantly poor effort.

    And enjoy the blog. Anyone know what this new, secret Wendy’s rollout coming in April will be?

  21. Dean says:

    I am an avid reader and I am 84 years young. Why the hate for the elderly?

  22. shthar says:

    You really thought you needed to leave a tip.

    Talk about setting the bar low.

    When do you not leave a tip?

    If you get stabbed?

  23. Jess says:

    I just had my first ever Steak ‘n Shake experience last weekend (in Ft. Wayne) and…it was awesome. So much win. 4 of us ate burgers and fries and the bill was $24. Love it, loved all of it, everything was delicious. That hot pepper vinegar was the cherry on top.

    This particular franchise location though, seems like a real piece of garbage. That manager should be sacked.

  24. Camielle says:

    I admit I am an avid Steak n’ Shake goer. I live in St. Pete, Fl and none of my local stores have the 7X7 burger yet. I am highly disappointed because after reading your review and seeing the picture I really really want one !

  25. Matt says:

    Next time (if there is a next time) order it on grilled sourdough. It doesn’t cost any extra, and it’s the bomb diggity.

  26. Michael says:

    I have to say that you can NOW order the 7by7 at ANY TIME day or night!

    i had one last friday night and it was AWESOME! the middle of the stack was so HOT it was hard to eat it :) But i did with room for 1/2 of my gf’s chili deluxe :)

    Steak N Shake here in Jeff City is awesome, anytime day or night! Service is great, food is awesome.

    beats the hell out of Freddies,5 guys, and whataburger!

  27. Samwow says:

    Coincidentally, there was a steak-n-shake right outside my hotel window in Memphis this past weekend. Ring side seat watching people order drive thru but of course, I didn’t. Your review makes me wish I had at least tried the place. In n Out is on my bucket list. So is eating a burger in front of a cow. I can’t say what my favorite burger ever was but I never had a disappointing burger from Fuddrucker’s.

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