The Shake Shack at Madison Square Park

The Shake Shack is legendary.  And now that Famous Ankles has partaken, he’s ready to pass supreme judgement on the place.

You don’t know the Shake Shack?  You must be new to NYC.

Okay, you’ve heard of the Flatiron Building?

Flat Iron Building in Manhattan

The building is shaped like an old-fashioned flat iron.  That is, it’s wedge-shaped.  It’s real name is the Fuller Building, but no one ever, ever calls it that.

Anyway, the Flat Iron building is on 23rd St at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and Broadway.  Anytime Broadway crossed an avenue, it creates a “square”.  (The most famous being Times Square where it crosses 7th Avenue.)

Well, the square next to the Flat Iron building is called Madison Square.  Yep.  You’ve heard of Madison Square Garden.  It’s not here.  Well, it used to be…twice, actually.  The current Madison Square Garden is way over to the west.  But the first two versions of it were right here, at Madison Square.

So.  What are the current glories of Madison Square?   Ummmm…they’ve got some metal trees….

Madison Square Park trees

And….it’s a nice, family-friendly place.

And…it has the Shake Shack.

The Shake Shack

Don’t let the empty seats fool you.  Let the line be your guide.  This place is popular.  Wildly popular.  Strangely popular.  I’ve never been here when there was a line less than 50 people long, and they serve FAST.  I’ve seen the line with at least 200 people.  And they’re all so patient.  It’s a NYC thing.  You go to the Shake Shack and buy a burger or hot dog or ice cream or shake.  They give you a little signaler (a vibrating gizmo you see at a lot of very busy restaurants) and send you out to wander the park while they fix your food.  After 10 minutes or so, you get your food and sit out in the local areas and eat.

I’ve seen this place at least a dozen times and turned down the opportunity to experience the wait and the food about 11 times.  This time I stayed and ate.  I ordered the “Shack Burger” and a strawberry shake.  I got the food and ate it.  It was $10 and it was fine.  It just wasn’t legendary.  It was fine.  But I don’t know why it has the cult following.  I coulda gone to Burger King up the street and gotten more for less.  It wouldn’t have the ambiance, but I could have just wandered back to the park.

I guess it is something that I don’t get.  There’s some reason for the long lines.

But, I can fault them for something that happened a few months ago.  It was “Barbeque NYC” and the city had brought in first rate BBQ makers from all over the country.  And they served their food at Madison Square Park.  Just a few yards from the Shake Shack.  And it was great BBQ.  GREAT BBQ!  It’s nearly impossible to fine good BBQ in NYC, and they had GREAT BBQ.  And people lined up at the Shake Shack for burgers and hotdogs.

NYC gourmands.

-H

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Explore posts in the same categories: Food, Manhattan, Mid-town, Wanderings

One Comment on “The Shake Shack at Madison Square Park”


  1. […] an earlier post, I had commented how wildly popular the place […]


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