After 9 hours of driving, Boise Fry Company (one of the Meridian locations) was my family’s stop for dinner. I had heard about this place for a long time, but up until now I hadn’t had a chance to pass through and see what it was all about. The basic concept is fries. Lots and lots of fries. There are always several different types of potatoes, and then different cuts you can choose from. As if that wasn’t enough, you can also select from various flavored salts and sauces to compliment the fries. Oh yeah, and they have hamburgers.
During my visit the types of potatoes available were:
- Russet (standard)
- Gold (Yukon Gold?)
I don’t like sweet potato fries, so that was as hard pass. I wanted to try all of the others, so I ordered one of each. To keep everything as consistent as I could, I ordered them all homestyle. Gold was the exception because they only offered regular. Beyond these, I ordered The Bourgeois which was the Russet but fried in duck fat and garnished with truffle salt. Most of the time duck fat fries are fried in standard oil and then tossed in a little bit of duck fat. From what I could tell, Boise Fry really did cook them in duck fat in a separate fryer.
Here are my observations in order of preference:
- Laura – Served with salt and vinegar flavored salt. These fries were crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. Almost buttery. Laura potatoes are a red skinned variety and very rare for french fries. These were by far my favorite and a revelation. The texture was outstanding, even after transporting back to the apartment.
- Bourgeois – Like I said, I was pretty sure that these were russets, but the duck fat and truffle salt elevated these fries to something very different. They weren’t crispy. I’d go as far as “floppy” as a description, but there was a pungency to the truffle salt and duck fat that made them pretty delicious. Was there any actual truffle in that truffle salt? Probably not, but the slightly astringent bite of the truffle flavoring was great. Would have been better if they were crispy, but they were super fragrant and rich.
- Gold – Almost positive these were Yukon Gold. The general guidance is that Yukon Gold potatoes aren’t good for fries, but I’ve had success making them at home and I’ve enjoyed them at restaurants as well. Maybe they just don’t scale to fast food volume? The texture of these fries seemed more…airy?…than others. They also stayed more crispy. What really sold me about these was the rosemary salt that we had added. It was a perfect compliment and gave it a bit of a Sunday dinner sort of feel.
- Purple – These weren’t bad. Actually, they were good, just not as good as the others. It’s a denser potato is my guess, and it was just a little bit gummy. So, higher starch content or moisture content. Or both. I’m sure it has all kinds of antioxidant benefits for your health. I’d describe them as soft rather than crispy.
- Russet – Fine. Just fine. Kind of floppy, and were actually a thinner cut than others. These were just boring fries and I would have rather had any of the others instead.
I can’t give a lot of guidance on the sauces. We got a lot of them, and they all had something to offer the fries. There was a ranch, and a garlicky thing, and something spicy. I truly don’t remember, and they probably change all the time. Regarding the hamburgers, they’re not bad. There’s a couple different meat (or non meat) blends you can choose from for the patty, and then a handful of preset topping combinations. I got the standard beef patty served with their “heat” toppings. I don’t see that on their online menu, but I’m reasonably confident that it had pepperjack cheese and jalapenos. The funguy patty is a mix of beef and mushrooms which would appeal to people who appreciate fungus but aren’t opposed to beef.
The restaurant’s tag-line “Burgers on the side” feels accurate to me. The burger was fine. A little dry, a little greasy, but enjoyable nonetheless. If you’re in the area and want fries you should check it out. Go ahead and get a burger. I’m guessing that everything would be just a little bit better once COVID restrictions are removed and they can have a self-serve sauce and salt bar again. Taking this stuff home just isn’t the same.