In the mood for a good burger


4 Stars

Street: 4417 Western Ave
City: Knoxville
Phone: 865-971-4777

It’s pretty rare for me to rate a fast food joint highly, especially one with a checkered history such as Central Park. However, it is always a treat for me to get one of their double cheeseburgers.

The other day, I was over off Middlebrook Pike touring an old home of historical significance when I realized it was past lunch time and I was near a Central Park. So I put down my silver goblet of hot apple cider that was burning my lips anyway, excused myself, grabbed a Reece’s Peanut Butter Cup, and headed for the tall skinny drive-thru building that is Central Park.

There was a car or two in front of me, but I was not worried because they always move faster than any fast food restaurant in the world, even for a special order. To my surprise, an employee came out a back entrance, walked up to my car, and asked to take my order. When it was my turn, I pulled up to the window, handed them money, they handed me food, and I was off on my way back to work with the wonderful aroma of Central Park burgers and fries wafting across the seats, swirled around by the Aurora’s powerful heating system.

The problem with getting a bag full of Central Park food and then driving somewhere is that it smells really good. The seasoned fries call your name from the bag, and eventually you are forced to give in and sample one. And then another and another, and pretty soon you are out of fries. Since I was already aware of this problem, I was able to control my fry consumption so that when I made it back to the office, there were still plenty of fries left in the bag.

One negative aspect of the experience is that somebody there got the great idea to switch from Coke products to Pepsi products, and although I would like to think Coke and Pepsi taste enough alike, they do not. Pepsi is sort of sweeter, more mediciney, and just does not work with Central Park food the way Coke does.

Upon my return to the office, I was able to enjoy my double cheeseburger and fries. As usual, it was disappointing to take the last bite. And of course, unlike other fast food places, especially Hardees, the burger was prepared exactly how I ordered it. There is something to be said for an order that is written down first rather than punched in on a computer.

As a long-time visitor to Central Park, I can say that for me, they have been consistent and have always provided tasty, hot food. The only bad experiences I have had are with Pepsi and the random dry burger. So if you happen to be near one of the very few Central Park locations and are in the mood for a good burger, you may want to consider paying them a visit.