The statements made on this website are the personal opinions of Laura and Diane. If we feel that a restaurant visit is not up to par, please remember it is our opinion. If you disagree with us, feel free to write us at info@newenglandbites.com.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Sonic Drive-In

"The ice is great!" 
"Don't forget to try the ice." 
"How was the ice?" 
"Did you get ice?"

August 28, 2010

These were the questions banging around in our heads as we headed up to the first SONIC in this area ...Peabody, Ma. I know, I know, it's an hour and 20 minutes away. But those SONIC commercials were driving us crazy. Everything looked so good. Then when youngest daughter Mallory and her boyfriend Scott took the trip up and raved...that was it. We had to go .

Yucky Boston tunnel

Bunker Hill Bridge

So this Saturday Laura & I braved the almost 1 1/2 hr. ride up to Peabody to see what the fuss was about. It's actually a nice ride up because you get to travel on RT.1 in Saugus, Ma. ....one of the greatest restaurant areas around. You'll see almost every restaurant advertised on TV . Kowloon, Polcari's, Hilltop Steakhouse, Pizzeria Regina and so many more. My head is always on a swivel when we travel this way. Laura gets sick of my ...look at this... look here.... Laura look ! But today we followed our trusty GPS right to SONIC's cool 50's parking area. We arrived at 3:30pm.

The place was hopping and you have several options as to how you want to dine. You can go through the drive-thru to get your food to go. You can park and sit in the small seating area in front of the building . Or, you can do like we did, and drive around the building and wait for a stall to empty to get car-hop service. This is the most fun. Each stall has a large menu posted and once you've decided you just press the button and a "mysterious voice" will take your order. When it's ready a guy/gal will zoom over on skates and give you your order and take your payment. See...easy / peasy .

At least it would have been easy/peasy if the service had been better. You see, while Mal and Scott had quick service with hot fresh food served to them, Laura and I waited and waited and waited and then got stuck with cold limp fries, tots and toast. Let me explain. We were like kids in a candy store looking at that big bright menu.They don't have a large food menu. They have a couple of hot dogs, a couple of burgers,chicken strips, some appetizers and , of course, fries and a few other sides. Click their website to get the whole menu. What they do have, however, is a fantastic selection of drinks.... coffees( hot, iced or frozen ), shakes, slushes,fruit drinks etc. We had a hard time deciding. Laura finally chose the footlong chili & cheese hot dog with a medium order of tater tots and a medium cherry limeade. I decided on a chicken strip dinner with a medium chocolate shake. The dinner included fries, country gravy and a Texas toast. We put in our order and then the wait began. Over a half hour later a nice girl named Nikisha skated over with our lunch. Everything was correct and we paid her . There was a little mix-up with the change because we didn't know whether you tip them or not. But Nikisha seemed reluctant to give Laura back the change ...so I guess you tip. lol

We ripped open those bags ( hey, we were starved ) and dug into our food. Hmmm, a little cool. Since we had waited so long, I think our order had hung around a bit before it got delivered. Disappointing. Laura said her dog was really tasty but could have been warmer and her tots were luke-warm at best. My chicken strips were nicely spiced and tasty but my fries were cold and limp. I also didn't receive the country gravy but did get an extra chicken piece. My Texas toast ,however, needed some toasting. I sincerely believe the poor service ruined the food. I bet on another day ( with service up to par ) everything would have been great ...like Mal had.

The saving grace was the drinks. Laura loved her cherry limeade. It was carbonated ( which she hadn't expected ) and tangy and really good. Plus my chocolate shake ( though small for a medium ) was really chocolaty, cold and thick. Yum Now the ice . We've never heard people talk so much about ice like they do about SONIC ice. And I don't mean ice like a slushy, slurpy, mushy or burpy. I mean ICE ice. Now both Laura and Mallory said their drinks stayed cold all the way from Peabody back to Somerset. They also said the ice didn't melt into the drink and water it down. So, WHAT IS THIS STUFF ? So many people want it . It's said that people in Texas go to SONIC just to get glasses of the ice.Maybe someone should sit down with a SONIC exec. and try to get to the bottom of it. Maybe the ice is some space-aged NASA thing. Who knows?

Since we had driven all this way, we weren't leaving without some of their famous ice cream. So we hit the button again and gave our order. Laura got the banana split with nuts and I got the hot fudge sundae with nuts. And then we waited ...and waited....and 15 minutes later a boy named Chris skated over to tell us they had to go to the " shed" to get chocolate sauce. We saw them go the the shed ...now more waiting. In another 10 minutes we finally got our treats. They were both delicious. We had nothing to complain about here. We gobbled them up and started for home.

Shed full of goodies!

Sonic is a fun place with the car-hop service , sonic radio ( 50's tunes and their commercials ) and 1/2 price happy hour ( drinks & slush ) from 2-4pm. Their drinks are amazing ( I can think of at least 6 more I'd love to try ) and their ice is the ice of legends . They just really need to work on their service, and thus, their food . When you say you're going to SONIC and people tell you , "DON'T FORGET THE ICE " , that can't be good.

*1 Med. Cherry Limeade - $1.15
1 Foot long Coney dog - 2.99
1 Chicken strip dinner - 5.69
1 Med. tots - 1.99
1 Med. chocolate shake - 2.79
1 Hot fudge sundae - 2.89
1 Banana split - 3.59
2 servings of nuts - .90 (.45 each)
Subtotal - $21.99
Tax - 1.54
TOTAL = $23.53
*Half-price Happy Hour

The Sonic Drive-In visited in today's review is at 55 Newbury St., Peabody, MA.  The restaurant is open from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. Monday through Sunday.  For more information, call (978) 535-9100. 

Don't forget to check out MenuJoy.com for great area restaurant menus.