Fast Food Review: Tater Tots from Sonic
Given my incredibly open mind for trying off-the-wall food items, it may come as a shock to you that I was once the most selective of eaters. I was so selective (one might even call it ‘picky) that for my entire elementary, middle and high school education I not once purchased lunch from school. Even when I ended up forgetting my brown bag and was issued one of those county mandated “billed” lunches, I straight up refused to put anything from a hair-netted woman into my mouth, in the processes risking malnutrition and extreme hypoglycemia during recess four-square.
Yup. I was that kid.
The quintessential “bringer,” I was so closed minded I didn’t even engage in trading. To me, cafeteria food was just a fear I couldn’t conquer, and even as I got older and the choices increased, it wasn’t until my freshmen year of college that I stopped relying on my mommy to pack my lunch. And why not? Mom knew what I liked, and besides, those mushy chicken fingers and that square “pizza” thing on the beige, 1970 hospital trays of Rockburn Elementary just looked, well inedible (the food that is, obviously the trays were inedible.)
And while I feel myself ultimately saved from a future of poor taste and potential health problems from my decision to forgo the lunch line, I do regret one thing: that I never had the pleasure of eating a real live, honest-to-God tater tot.
Thanks to my first ever trip to Sonic, my worldview has not only been shocked, but 12 years of culinary isolation have been called into question. Yes, I am here to tell you that Sonics tater tots are just that good, and are in fact the best tater tots I have ever eaten.
Pop some of these crispy little potato pieces in your mouth and you’ll never think of a spud the same way again. Top them with chili and cheese, or get them plain. They’re SONIC® good no matter how you eat them.
Never mind that they were the first and only tater tots I’ve ever eaten. Forget the stunning devolution of my sophisticated palette. Just know that thanks to my friend “Q” at Brand Eating and a recent Sonic giveaway, a changed man stands before you today.
As one of the world’s leading experts on potato chips and French fries, it really amazes me that I didn’t realize I would like tater tots sooner in life. I mean, it’s potato + fat + salt dipped in ketchup. What the heck is there not to like? Yet unlike French fries, which very widely in consistently and can be found everywhere, there’s something incredibly unique and hypnotizing about the perfect tot. It’s that culinary “X” factor born from nostalgia and simplicity, taking us back to a time when life was simpler and the hour you got between a hard days of napping and addition problems was to be savored.
Yet I never got to savor those days, but thanks to Sonic, I am now. The medium container is well filled with warm, crispy potato pieces with tiny ridges and bumps on the exterior. I liked how they were remarkably clean on the outside – crispy and not oily, with the nooks and crannies you don’t get with fries. The insides were moist but not mushy, and did a great job of soaking up ketchup.
My goodness these little buggers were delicious. Even the fact that my order took forever to come out by the annoying drive through hop or the fact that a few stray fries ended up in my box couldn’t ruin this ethereal tasting experience for me. Words fail me, to the point where description becomes impossible. So I can simply say that these are the best tots ever – that is, until I try others to compare.
And considering no other nationwide fast food restaurant makes tater tots (at least to my knowledge, but let me know if I’m off here) I think it’s safe to say that my conception of the golden brown standard of tater goodness is safe for at least the immediate future.
(As a side note, a medium order of these things is listed at ridiculously low 200 calories and 2.5 grams of saturated fat. Considering I’m now willing to replace all my carbohydrates with Sonics tater tots, this seems completely within the acceptable limits of nutritional mindfulness.)
Pros: Nostalgia for memories never realized. Warm, crispy loveliness. Somewhere between "ethereal" and "OMG YES AWESOME"
Cons: Hypoglycemia at recess. 22 years of missing out.
Grubbing on-the-go: 9.00/10
Price: 1.59 for medium order
Overall GrubGrade: 9.50/10
More Info: www.Sonic.com
Onion Rings (Medium Size)
Calories – 203
Fat – 12.9 grams
Saturated Fat – 2.4 grams
Cholesterol – 1 milligram
Sodium – 440 milligrams
Carbs – 20 grams
Sugars – 2 grams
Protein – 2 grams