Cons: not open Sundays, very little vegetarian choices
The Bottom Line: If you have to eat fast food I would chose Chik-fil-A, hands down
I think the title sums it up easily. Chik-fil-A has food that tastes better and is slightly better for you than other fast food restaurants. For the longest time Chik-fil-A were the only chicken nuggets my kids would "eat". They would claim they like McDonalds, Burger King, etc and would want to go there but when it came down to it the food never got eaten. Chik-fil-A always got eaten. I never could figure out why the line at the Chik-fil-A where I grew up in FL was always long until I moved to SC and that is where everyone eats so I tried it.
Chik-fil-A has a simple menu of chicken items. You can get plain or dressed up breaded or grilled chicken sandwiches, nuggets, salads, and my personal favorite, wraps. Their wraps are served cold with your choice of dressings. They have grilled chicken, lettuce, carrots, cheese and additional items depending on the wrap you order. Like their salads and everything else they are always fresh with the best ingrediants. In my opinion they are as good as any wrap I have had at a sit down deli or restaurant. With your main item you can always get cole slaw, waffle fries, side salads, chicken noodle soup, or fruit cups. Their cole slaw is pretty good and being in a cole slaw capital that is saying something. Of course the waffle fries are a big novelty for the kids. The fruit cups actually have fruit kids will enjoy too, grapes and apples amount other fruits, 2 of my childrens' favorites. The soup has a nice thick broth and no skimping on the chicken with nice fat noodles. They have the usual soft drinks as well as iced tea and lemonade with free refills. For dessert they typically have ice cream or brownies. But they have something new, hand mixed milkshakes in 4 flavors that are oh so good with nice rich whipped cream on top too. The kids meals are another plus. You get the typical chicken nuggets in 4 or 6 count, your choice of waffle fries or fruit cup (small additional charge) and a soft drink. With it there is no junk toy, there is a value filled and/or educational toy. We have gotten many books, books on tape/CD, CDs, CD Roms, toothbrushes, science experiments, etc etc. For children under 3 these can be traded in for an under 3 toy, frequently we have gotten cute value filled board books as the under 3 toy. If neither of these appeal to your child they can be traded in for a kids cup or cone of ice dream (their soft serve ice cream). You can also get party platters and such without pre-ordering, these have been wonderful to pick up on the way to a potluck playdate you forgot to get something for.
Another thing you get when you chose Chik-fil-A though is service. I have found the service to be fairly consistant. Friendly, fast, courtious and helpful staff at every location I have been to. No rude, doing you a favor by helping you staff that you find at some fast food restaurants. I am always surprised by how nice everyone can be while the long lines move so quickly you aren't in line long at all yet still be served wonderful fresh food.
Lastly you are supporting values, their kids meals are filled with educational and value filled toy and info on the bags. Every Chik-fil-A is closed Sunday for family time. And as far as I have seen they support the community. You can get awesome cow calendars for $5 at the end of every year, 100% of the proceeds benefits United Way yet they include a good coupon or 2 every month of the calendar. They make great small gifts for people as they are always available during the holidays and if you end up with an extra or 2 after giving out gifts, all the more coupons for you. Every school in our area has a Chik-fil-A night where the school invades Chik-fil-A and their PTO earns a portion of the proceeds. I have also received coupons from Chik-fil-A for free items just for participating in charity events or the kids have for good grades at school, summer reading club, etc.
In our area Chik-fil-A also has one more advantage. You see my other choices for fast food wouldn't be McDonalds or Burger Kind, they would be Wendy's or maybe Hardees. Neither of my other top choices have play places or mall locations. So on a too hot, too cold, or rainy day you can guess which one I would chose. Of course I would chose the play place and better toy.
The only drawback for our family is that my 11 yr old does not eat meat. At a burger joint I can order her a cheeseburger kids meal and ask them to hold the meat (though the service at most burger joints is questionable so whether they actually do or not is another story, hit or miss), that way she still gets the fun of getting the junk of fast food and she gets the toy. At Chik-fil-A the only thing she will eat is a side salad, though nutrituous it is not quite so fun. So unfortunately we tend to only eat Chik-fil-A at school nights or during the day while she is at school. Of course the other drawback is not being open on Sundays, but I understand the philosophy and can even imagine it may help attract the better help they have so I support them for that.
Pros: Alternative to Hamburgers Cons: Too pricey, Self Serving Policies, Slow Service I've eaten at Chick Fil-A many times over the years (though not my suggestions) and I still think that they are outrageously expensive. I usually get a chicken salad sandwich and a tea and it's about $5.00. Too much for just a chicken sandwich. The service is spotty but what can you expect from teenagers. They clearly have chicken salad on … more