Not too long ago, the Taco Bell location on Hwy. 171 closed its doors, and re-opened in a brand new location a little bit north of their old one. I wondered if the old building would be torn down, since it looked like an old Taco Bell building, but here comes the Dairy Barn to the rescue. Dairy Barn took a location that had been open for years and turned it into a nice-looking hamburger joint that I have to pass at least four times a day.
Chelsea and I had gotten an order to go one evening, using the drive through. Normally, when you use the drive through, you get someone that wants to be anywhere but there, and you can hear it in their voice. I was fortunate enough to have Pierre’s daughter, Mindi, waiting on me in the drive through, and she did an up-sale on me in the window that I was happy to accept, just because she sounded so happy to offer it to me. She sounded so pleased at doing her job. I got my food fast, and everything was fresh and hot. However, I’m not reviewing the to-go order, because no burger travels great and stays pretty, so I’m reviewing a meal Chelsea and I went in for at lunch.
I ordered the single bacon cheeseburger, all the way, with fries, and Chelsea had the same. In the time it took me to get my drinks, sit down, and snap a couple of pictures, they were calling me to pick up my food. I always try the fries first, because if they are not hot all the way through, you know they have been sitting. These were as fresh as fresh gets.
I went to elementary school at the original Vincent Settlement in Carlyss, about 32 years ago, and the ladies that made our lunch were amazing. They made food that felt like your mom or grandma made it. I always remember loving hamburger day at school, because they were like the burgers we got at cookouts on the weekends with our friends and families.
That’s the feeling I get when I have Dairy Barn’s burgers. I’m not saying that this is the best burger I have ever had, but it’s perfect in its simplicity. The bacon on my burger was nice and crisp — definitely not some precooked fast food nonsense, but real bacon. The buns are just like the ones you buy at the store, but they have a buttery glaze on top which really pumps up the taste.
Chelsea and I flew through the burgers, and though we each only got a small order of fries, neither of us could get through them. I normally don’t leave any fries on my plate, but not this time.
Dairy Barn is a Calcasieu Parish institution, and you would be hard-pressed to find someone that has not had one of these burgers. Pierre has managed to make a simple, truly great burger, and he’s been rewarded with loyal customers who have stayed with him through the years.
This place is what I am talking about when I say “break the chain, eat local!” There are now three locally-owned Dairy Barns, and I have a feeling that this North Lake Charles location will be a great success for them.