Getting a new franchised restaurant in your area is like opening a new bag of Doritos chips — you have a general idea of what you’re getting, but you really hope you get a good bag with a few extra chips.

Just by surveying the city of Conway alone you’ll find out that not every Sonic, McDonalds and Taco Bell are the same. You have to scout out your options to see where the good ones are, and which store locations to avoid like the plague.

Conway recently added the first Steak n Shake in the City of Colleges, and customers can rest assured that this location is a good one. The location, urgency and quality of service —, and delicious meals for relatively cheap prices — makes this a good lunch stop for even the most broke college students.

This newly established restaurant is located on Dave Ward, right next to Chicken Express and Burger King. It is directly across the street from the men and women’s soccer fields, making it a convenient lunch spot for UCA students, especially on the southern end of campus. It may be pesky to get across traffic during lunch rushes on Dave Ward, but the food itself is worth the two-minute wait behind the driver who mistakes a yield sign as a “do not pass go” sign.

Upon arrival, the restaurant was wrapped around with cars, and it seemed that I wouldn’t get my food for at least 20 minutes. However, I was seated and served within 10 minutes, and the cars in the drive-thru line appeared to be in constant motion.

There was a sense of urgency among the many cooks in the store, and the waitresses made sure each customer was well served.

I’ll admit, I did forget that a patty melt is the middle stage of the evolution from a cheeseburger to a sub sandwich, but regardless, the food was fantastic. I’m a condiments kind of fellow, and I didn’t even have to use ketchup. (Insert shoulder shrug emoji here.)

If a restaurant had all of these excellent qualities and presented terrible ice cream, I’d have to say the restaurant would be a disaster. After all, if you’re going to base half of your name on your dessert, you better be swinging when you step up to the plate.

As a self-acclaimed ice cream expert, I will say the ice cream had the perfect consistency.

It wasn’t too thick to where you’d need a gallon of milk for your mouth to feel normal again, and it wasn’t a half-frozen glass of milk either. One of the waitresses even had the idea of giving me a spoon and a straw because she understood sipping M&Ms through a straw isn’t ideal. (Some fast food places could learn a thing or two.)

But there were also a few minor complaints, one of them being the waiting area, which is crammed inside a small corner, next to the main exit of the store —- and I thought Donaghey had traffic jams.

However, the benefits outweigh this slight problem. It just won’t outweigh me if I keep eating this place’s fantastic shakes.

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