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Shifting Loyalties: Lovers of West Coast Favorite In-N-Out Defecting to East Coast Import Five Guys?!?!

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Photo of a Five Guys Burger by mrmatt via Flickr
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The double burgers, the hand-cut fries, the cheery employees, and the red-and-white decor. We're talking about SoCal's very own In-n-Out, right? Or are we talking about Virginia's upstart and expanding Five Guys? Uh oh. The burger wars are getting intense. Now longtime devotees of In-n-Out's crave-able, affordable, reliable burgers say they are sleeping with the enemy, aka Five Guys.

"Will Five Guys overtake In-N-Out?" asks an LA Times article last week, offering a glance at both burger businesses, and their shifting customer bases. While Five Guys says they aren't here to take over the reins from reigning burger bosses In-n-Out, who've been in the biz since 1948, they are clearly fishing from the same pond when it comes to customers.

In-n-Out says they won't be making any changes to compete with Five Guys, and while there are some clear similarities, there are a few major differences between the two chains. Five Guys is more expensive, and tend to draw an older, more affluent customer. In-n-Out operates drive-through windows while Five Guys does not. Five Guys' menu is a bit more expansive, and offers things like spicy Cajun fries, bacon for the burgers, and hot dogs. Obviously, though, Five Guys does not have a "secret menu" like our beloved In-n-Out, where you can gorge yourself on a multitude of items.

Burger lovers in Los Angeles will have their loyalties tested soon, as Five Guys begins to open more locations. "Now there are 27 locations in the state, but Five Guys has sold the rights to open 200 more in Southern California alone — nearly double the number operated here by In-N-Out. Next up is a Culver City location, set to open in mid-April," notes the Times.

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Of course, you can always opt to go to one of our many, many, many other local spots for a great burger, or make the classic In-n-Out Double Double Animal Style at home.