Amazon Go - the future of retail?


#141

You use the drive-in when it’s 10pm at night, you just out of the movies, and your car is full of friends and you don’t want to go to a bar. Then you munch and talk about the movie.

All of ours also have the drive-thru though. On a nice day, they have some picnic tables too which are fine for sitting outside during the lunch hour.


#142

We have Sonic restaurants in Texas too. Whataburger is much better than Sonic.

EDIT: Although my sisters used to love the chili-cheese tots at Sonic, so there’s that.


#143

If that works it’s very slick. We shop at Costco because it’s better in a lot of different ways, but on weekends the lines can be long.

Of course this could be rife for abuse. Fill up a big cart and “forget” to scan an item or two and then Sam’s door people need to catch it. Unless there’s some automated way of catching this.


#144

Ever since Hardees re-vamped their menu several years ago, I’ve been rather impressed with their burgers.
Although I think the Six Dollar Burger (which debuted at around $4), is about $7, if they still have it.
But their 1/3 pound Bacon Cheese Burger is a treat I will drive the several miles out of my way to get. It is excellent. Also, their beer batter onion rings are great. But yeah, agreed on the calories. Not a treat I have often.

Has anyone brought up Burger Time yet? Another place with pretty good half-pound burgers and beer-batter onion rings. I cannot even finish one of their burgers.

Best burger in Bismarck however belongs to … wait for it… Paradiso! Ordered off the American menu, that damn thing is glorious, and never fails to impress me. I quit buying “Mexican” food (or Ameri-Mex) there, and get their damn Paradiso-Burger now every time.


#145

I’m a bit tired of burgers because I’m tired of all the bread. The two buns are just a ton of carbs and unneeded calories.


#146

Yeah, but the bread is half the burger. Good bread makes a good burger. Which is why almost any burger at a restaurant or bar beats almost any fast food burger. And why McD and In and Out Burgers are so bad. Bad buns.

/ducks


#147

I’ve pretty much given up on fast food burgers, even the better ones from some of the chains mentioned above. On the rare occasions that I get a burger these days, it’s from the sit-down joint in our area where they’re made to order on the flattop, from a 1/2 pound of really good ground beef that the cook forms in his hands before cooking, not a pre-made (even if not frozen) patty. Of course it costs more, but there’s just no comparing the quality.


#148

Both Shack Shack and In-n-out cook their burgers fresh to order and the meat is never frozen. They aren’t half-pound burgers, but that’s because they’re a different style-- they are smashed burgers, where you take a small ball of beef then smash it down hard on a very hot plancha to maximize the amount of contact and maillard flavor.

The best burger bun isn’t a fancy-dancy brioche pretzel bun or whatever, it’s a Martin’s potato roll. Soft, squishly, melds with the American cheese (always American) and meat juices.

I’m fortunate in that my local makes one of the best diner-style burgers in NYC, so I don’t get fast food much.


#149

This conversation is confusing me because a guy at work here insists that In-n-out burger has been rated the best burger joint in the country - being on the East Coast I don’t have access to one but he constantly raves about it.

There is a place local to me that gets good ratings, though it’s not a chain: https://meltgourmetcheeseburgers.com/. The problem with places like these, though, is that the burger/bun/toppings is about the size of a football and it costs an outrageous amount (though to be fair, I guess you could cut it in half and use it for two meals, but it’s contrary to my guy genes to buy something and not consume all of it in one sitting… no matter how ill-advised that technique might be).


#150

All of those actually sound better than the stupid plain bun at places like 5 Guys and In and Out. Heck, even the sesame bun that is an integral part of the Whopper is better than those plain buns.

My personal favorite when I’m making burgers at home is to surround the burger with Sourdough bread, the more Sour the better. It forms such a nice contrast to the spices in the burger and the melted cheese. A Ciabatta bun is a nice second choice.


#151

Interior texture is fine on sourdough, but the chewy crust ruins the bite. Also you may enjoy the taste but it distracts from what I see as the platonic ideal hamburger. Sesame seeds are less blasphemous but I am a purist on this.

Ciabatta has a similar problem, the entire thing is too chewy, so you end up squeezing all the juice out of the burger and working too hard in general. Great for a cold rare roast beef sandwich, with some nice Emmentaler, cornichons, and sharp mustard. But not a juicy beefy burger.

@Charlatan: Much like pizza, there are many regional varieties of hamburgers. Smashed burger (Shake Shack & In-n-out), diner burger (like my local spot above), steakhouse/pub burger (usually close to a pound, very thick), onion burger (very thin sliders cooked with onion water ala White Diamond), loose meat (maid-rite and recently chopped cheese), and of course now your foux-foux fancy abominations with brioche pretzel buns, pork belly, and various types of shitty aiolis. Slider abominations are a further subcategory, where making something that tastes bad smaller is supposed to render it more attractive.


#152

There are Sonics in Grand Forks and Minot, ND, so pretty far north. I like Sonic for a change of pace now and then. There were lots in Kansas when I lived there, but several seemed to vie for the title of slowest fast food place ever. But their tots and their drinks are awesome.

They reduced menu offerings in the early 2000s which made me sad because some of the breakfast offerings they had went away and they stopped doing blended root beer floats which were awesome.


#153

I tried going to the Amazon Go Store last night. At 8pm there was still a line 30-40 people deep! Craziness. Maybe will try again another time.


#154

There is an Amazon Go about 3 blocks from work, so I went yesterday at about 11:30am (Seattle). I liked it.

The thrill was obviously gone because there was about 3 other customers in the store while I was there. No lines or anything. Walked in and there was girl who didn’t have the app on her phone and an employee was trying to help her download it so she could go in. I was prepared, so just scanned and went in.

It really isn’t a convenience store like I expected it to be, it’s a fast food place. The kind of food you would see in a convenience store though, just more of it. There are chips, drinks, snacks of all sorts, and then there are your pre-made stuff: salads, sandwiches, wraps, etc. Honestly, I was worried about time so I didn’t give a good look at everything they had, but there was a pretty good selection. It was only stuff you would get for lunch, you aren’t going to buy a gallon of milk or car air fresheners in one.

So I grabbed a kale Cesar salad, a candy bar, and a can of Coke. After you exit the turnstile, there is a place with microwaves, plastic utensils, etc. It felt really weird just leaving and not paying a cashier.

Then I left to go back to work and a I got a message on my watch that I had been in the store for 2.5 minutes and to check the app for my receipt. $5.50. It wasn’t a huge salad, but it was enough for me. Can’t say it was a great salad, but it was good, especially for that price.

I was impressed. I wish all stores could be like that, but I guess that isn’t possible on a bigger scale. Even if there isn’t a line, it was nice just grabbing what I wanted and leaving. Not having to scan anything or deal with a cashier. There was also a nice variety of stuff to grab for lunch.

The thing is though, there are so many lunch options in the middle of downtown Seattle that there isn’t much of a reason to go to one unless you want a cheap lunch. Which I guess is why there weren’t many people in there at 11:30 on a Friday. People are going to any of the other options.


#155

Cheap and fast. It’s our busy season at work (nothing to do with taxes) so I eat at my desk for lunch. Some days I’m prepared with stuff to bring from home but now and then I need to stop at gas station convenience store and grab my lunch. It would be very nice to walk in, grab, and just walk out.

Of course this is just more jobs disappearing. I can’t really cheer for it.


#156

Good point, it was very quick as well. It took me 20 minutes to walk 3 blocks, shop, and back. The local restaurants might be quick, but they also have lines.

My bring from home lunch is about $4 a day, so price was pretty competitive as well.

Not sure it’s that bad. There were at least 2 employees in the store stocking when I was in there. A 7-11 would have about the same. And there is a lot of pre-made food someone has to be making. It looked like all freshly made stuff, not made days ago and packed with preservatives.


#157

Probably not huge. Both the people stocking could work a cash register, but if one or both did then you might still need a third for stocking. The pre-made food is likely made in a central location nearby and delivered to the stores. Those jobs are safe until they automate those.

Anyway, bring on the robots and give us our universal salaries and figure out something for us to do.


#158

I woke up this morning and my first thought was (well, my second thought my first thought was why did I wake up so early on my day off) how come you can work your entire life from 20 to 65 at a nursing home then when it’s your turn to go to the nursing home you can’t afford to. I mean, forget healthcare and whatever. You put in your 50 years caring for people then you want to get 20 years being cared for. It kinda seems like a fair social compact. Yet it doesn’t work that way, it’s so expensive normal people can’t afford it unless the state pays for it, or unless they accumulated so much loot this system works out for them.


#159

Haha, I know a couple people who work as nurses (not nursing homes, but ‘actual’ nurses (I don’t have a better way to make that distinction- no slight against nursing home attendants!)). They don’t have health insurance through their employer. Our system is hilariously fucked.

Sorry for the digression.


#160

Yeah it’s coming and not just for minimum wage retail jobs.