Double Char with cheese
Opening in Santa Barbara in 1969, Habit Burger Grill is more like fast-casual than straight up fast food. The menu is bursting with burgers, naturally, but there's also a big list of sandwiches (42-68RMB) and salads (28-56RMB). The things to get here, though, are the 'Charburgers'; beef burgers of many varieties: single or double, BBQ bacon, teriyaki or the signature Santa Barbara with roasted garlic aioli and cheese. Each comes loaded up with lettuce, tomato, caramelised onions, pickles and mayo. They're big, delicious and well-priced starting at 52RMB for a burger, fries and a drink.
First impressions are great – burgers are super juicy and flavourful thanks to The Habit's in-house meat grinding and fresh, not frozen patties (which you can watch them pound out from the open prep area). It's a big difference that elevates these guys above many other on-the-fly burger joints. Stellar shakes and malts make for another Habit Burger mainstay, available in chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, mocha, and coffee for just 28RMB, way less than other comparably good versions around town. Definitely go for a malt.
Don't brush off Habit Burger Grill as just another place jumping on the incoming American fast food train. You'll get truly tasty burgers here and top notch shakes, and you won't empty your wallet doing so. And on a final note, the service is great – the staff is smiley, helpful and really concerned about whether or not your burger is the best it can be, and that's a pleasant surprise that you don't often find.