The moment you've been waiting a year for: this years rankings are finalized. As we examine back over previous lists, the rankings are gradually stabilizing, which is a good sign that the committee (me) is finally developing some consistency, at least in my own head.
The biggest change has to be the addition of Pizza Hut. This is still a questionable matter whether we should consider them fast food, but after wavering back and forth, it's just impossible to ignore the impact Pizza Hut, as well as the collective pizza industry has, even if only indirectly, on the fast food world. So they've made the cut, at least for this year. And when dealing with a power like Pizza Hut, they don't exactly sneak in at the back of the pack. I can't anticipate as substantial a shake-up as Pizza Hut's addition, unless, say, Starbucks at some point became eligible for fast food consideration.
The biggest rising stock this year, besides Pizza Hut, is Burger King, who has made a 10 point jump in the rankings from 2 years prior, when the whole franchise was in disarray. The biggest falling stocks are Nathan's Famous, who was the only restaurant bumped from the list of last year, and also Sonic, who fell 4 places.
A quick reminder of the format: a tiebreaker in overall points is decided by comparing reputation, or clout of the restaurant. If that is tied, then tiebreaker goes to taste comparison, and then value. + variation means a higher number ranking from last year (not a good thing) while a – indicates spots the restaurant has moved towards #1 (that's good). Check here for a full explanation of the format.
Look at the slide show for #20-16