When South 21 Drive-In boasts that its Super Boy burger is a meal in itself, that’s only partially true. It’s a lot of food, for sure: two good-size patties with the works in a sesame bun crowned with a quartered pickle spear and sided by a heap of French fries. That may indeed be a meal, but the large cadre of fans of this vintage 1955 drive-in know that no meal is complete without an order of onion rings. They are individual hoops that arrive so greaseless that they first appear to have been baked, not fried. But after a few bites, the luxury of the fry kettle becomes deliciously apparent as the crust melts and melds with the sweet vein of onion it contains. With a jot of salt added, these are four-star o-rings. The other thing necessary to complete the meal is either cherry-flavored lemon Sundrop (a tradition hereabouts) or, better still, one of South 21’s excellent milk shakes, blended to order.
While we love this old-fashioned drive-in with its articulated windowside trays and Servus-Fone ordering equipment at every car slip, we do believe the hamburgers need doctoring up; they tend to be dry enough to beg for extra condiments. That’s why many regulars prefer the heftier and juicier hamburger steak or the drippy fried chicken.