BEST FRIES (2001)

Billabong's Joe Bob Aussie Chips

There are better places for unadulterated fries (Hamlin's Coffee Shop and the Wienery, both in Minneapolis, make perfectly caramel-colored, deliciously crisp versions), but in choosing the best candidate in such a grease-soaked category, why not go all the way? We're talking here about Billabong's Joe Bob Aussie Chips ($5.75). A silly name, granted, but it fits the silly Australian-themed décor of the place, which consists primarily of boomerangs and Foster's ads. Once your platter of spuds arrives, though, you won't notice your surroundings; all attention will be consumed by the monstrous task ahead of you. These thick, crisp-on-the-edges, golden fries are smothered in layers of shredded, melted Cheddar and Monterey jack cheeses, green onions, and bacon pieces. If that doesn't up the fat quotient enough for you, add a bit of the chipotle sour cream that's served on the side. Suddenly, French fries have become a meal.

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