The False Origins of In-N-Out's Fake Monkey Style Burger

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West coasters, In-N-Out obsessives, and foodies the world over had their hearts broken and their cholesterol levels saved when, after getting trolled by a single food blog into believing the legendary burger joint had created a new secret-menu item, it turned out the Monkey Style burger was one elaborate ruse. The off-the-books burger that could have been — but never was — combined spread, cheese, and grilled onion covered Animal Style fries with a Double Double burger. So, yum, but: bummer.

On Friday morning, FoodBeast's Elie Ayrouth unleashed an investigation into his search for the so-called  Monkey Style burger. In the accompanying video, Ayrouth attempts to order the burgers from an In-N-Out drive-thru, only to be told that In-N-Out doesn't offer them at any of its locations. Here's where things get weird. The video cuts to a "top secret" screen with scrambled voices; we're led to believe that some top secret source has provided our guide a box full of the mythical burgers. 

However, in the video you can clearly see that the burgers are Monkey Style-less as they're handed to Ayrouth:

And here:

And yet he somehow ends up with this:

On Tuesday afternoon, In-N-Out stepped forward to debunk the myth: Carl Van Fleet, the chain's vice president of planning and development, told LAist, "There is no such thing. It seems to be a story that originated somewhere in cyberspace. For a variety of reasons, we're unable to prepare burgers in the manner that a few websites have described as 'Monkey Style'."

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So, did Ayrouth, who also happens to be FoodBeast's publisher, draw up this hoax to get attention? He didn't respond to when KCAL9 asked him, but if he did then the plan's working. The Monkey Style burger story and video fooled several outlets, including LAist, the Los Angeles Times, and the Huffington Post. Meanwhile, the rest of us can take solace in the fact that Monkey Style burgers are, well, really just Double Doubles stuffed with Animal Style fries, which you can make for yourself with a couple of napkins. No trolling required.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.