On my recent trip to the Alpharetta area, I was delighted to find right of the highway, there was a Krystal location. Having never been to a Krystal before, and being a bit peckish at 4PM, I was up for a snack of a few of these mini, “Mirror, Mirror” belly bombs.
Some of you may be wondering what Krystal is. Well, if you live in the Northern part of the United States, you’ve likely never seen one. That’s because up North, the predominant 24-hour mini-burger chain is White Castle. In fact, there seems to be only a single market where White Castle and Krystal co-exist, which is certain parts of Tennessee (where the Krystal chain originates) which I one day hope to visit and be able to eat freshly made White Castles and Krystals side-by-side.
However something tells me that if White Castles come in contact with Krystals, you would likely create a matter/antimatter annihilation effect similar to what drives the powerplant on the Starship Enterprise. I’ve never met anyone who has claimed to have eaten both Krystals and White Castles simultaneously or even within hours of each other. That’s because if anyone ever did, they probably never lived to tell about it.
The Krystal drive-in menu, which closely resembles that of White Castle. However there are a few differences — Krystal also has chili dogs and also larger hamburgers for sale, which I think is somewhat off-message.
The Double Krystal with Cheese, in its cartridge, ready for firing.
The Double Krystal with Cheese, fully deployed. Another strange aspect of the Krystal which fits in nicely with the “Mirror Mirror” motif is that by default, they are dressed with mustard, not ketchup as White Castles are. Everything else about them, such as the finely chopped onions and the pickle slices and the mini-buns are the same. At first, I was taken aback by the difference, and thought it was heretical, but then I discovered I actually liked eating it that way — much as I prefer Spock with a beard. I may very well start ordering some of my White Castles with nothing on them and bring along some mustard the next time I go out on late night belly bomb outing back home.
Another important difference between Krystal and White Castle is that Krystal has vastly superior french fries. At White Castle their krinkle-cut fries seem like a bit of an afterthought and really aren’t worth eating. I vastly prefer White Castle’s onion rings to their fries. Krystal’s fries are quite good for the fast food genre, actually.