The Best Fries in the Cafeteria


Will Atzeff, Staff Writer

What are the best fries?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Everyday in the Lake Forest High School lunchroom, there’s a shoulder-to-shoulder crowd in the back corner of the cafeteria where the fry counter is located. 

Fries are easily one of the most profitable items for the cafeteria. Some students even go as far as bringing half of their lunch from home and relying on the fries to complete their meal. 

Unfortunately, the selection is different each day. Some lunches there is a noticeable larger crowd in the corner due to a larger demand for certain types of fries.

I sought out to discover what’s the hype around certain fry types over others. In this list I unpack my ranking of the top 5 fry types in the cafeteria.

5. Wedge Fries 

There is nothing more disappointing than walking into the lunchroom on a Friday for wing toss and seeing the wedge fries as the side. They are inferior in every category compared to the other fries. Their fried surface area to the volume of potato is way too low. You might as well eat an uncooked potato straight from the dirt. To add, the wedge shape is such a poor design, it feels like you are eating a salty orange slice. The brown color is displeasing, and an excessive amount of ketchup is needed to put these down.

4. Straight Fries

The straight fries are about as basic as it gets. There is nothing inherently bad about them, but there is nothing inherently good about them either. I think if I were to ask my fellow classmates one word to describe these fries, it would be “mid.” Nothing is unique or exciting about the shape, and they’re not remotely crunchy. With that, they are often damp and soggy if you are late to lunch. The only reason these beat out wedge fries is because they contain more fried surface area, so it doesn’t taste like you are putting raw potato in your mouth.

3. Crinkle Fries

I tell myself this is what the Belgians of Namur had in mind when they created the dish in the winter of 1680. According to lore, the fried fish-loving citizens had to find something else to fry when the local river froze over, so they resorted to potatoes. When eating the lunchroom’s crinkle fries, I imagine myself in a fire-heated Belgian cabin during that particularly cold winter, savoring the crunchy rivets in the fried potatoes. These are a lunchroom classic, but they fall just short of the top two.

2. Waffle Fries

If you have slot C lunch, you are lucky to see these still available. They have the best shape out of any fry on this list, and fit perfectly on the top of your tongue. The holes greatly increase the “fried” to potato ratio, making every bite fruitful. The color is impeccable, a golden hue with crunchy mahogany highlights. Waffle fries are the best for dipping because they grip condiments better than any other fry on this list. My only complaint about waffle fries is that every so often you will get one that was made out of the edge of the potato, resulting in a weird consistency without the iconic holes of a waffle fry. 

1. Curly Fries

Without a doubt, the lunchroom’s curly fries are the champion of the fry gauntlet. They are the perfect compliment for wing toss Friday. They have a  quintessential potato to “fried” ratio. They are the thunder to my lightning, the Queen to my England, and the french to my fry. The curly potato tubes are not only exciting to look at, but exciting to eat. They easily have the best seasoning out of all the fries on this list. When the curly fries touch my mouth, I’m instantly transported to the good old days of dino nuggets and bagged mixed veggies. Many students would consider curly fries a delicacy when you mix them with the barbeque sauce at the bottom of the wing basket. Heavenly, savory, delightful, luscious, and divine would all be adequate words to describe these curly fries.