Let me start by saying this: Dr. Pepper is my least favorite soda ever made. Why? Because Dr. Pepper tastes like shit. I may be biased, but Dr. Pepper is seriously the worst soda ever made. It’s so shitty, even Dr. Pepper can’t decide what the fuck it’s supposed to taste like. What started out as a prune-based soda (no, seriously), Dr. Pepper has now decided it’s an exciting blend of 23 flavors in every can. Or, more realistically, that’s just a bunch of marketing jargon made up to hide the fact that their soda tastes like shit.
As much as I hate Dr. Pepper, however, I’ve drank enough of it in my lifetime to know exactly how it should and does taste and the same goes for Diet Dr. Pepper. I know there are people out there who love Dr. Pepper, so I’m going to do my best to stick to the facts about this new “flavor” and not let my opinions get in the way of that.
Upon opening my bottle of Dr. Pepper TEN, I immediately gave it a sniff. Dr. Pepper is one of those colas you can identify easily by its unique scent. From the smell of things, this soda checks out. It smells like the real deal. So I tipped the bottle forward and gave it a swig. As the pop washed over my tongue, my single thought was “…This tastes like shit!” I’m sorry, I know that sounds biased (given my aforementioned disdain for Dr. Pepper), but there really is something severely off with this flavor.
It’s supposed to be a 10 calorie Dr. Pepper and nothing more. To me, that should equate to tasting somewhere between regular and diet. I find Dr. Pepper and its diet equivalent to be tolerable at best. I’ll drink either of them willingly if it’s all there is to drink. This soda, however, is just unbearable. It has a severely off-putting “bite” to it, as if it were over-carbonated. Even worse than that is the after-taste. The taste just lingers in your mouth until it sours. It left me wanting something else to drink or eat. Anything just to get the taste out. This pop also leaves that horrible “my teeth and tongue feel fuzzy now” sensation in your mouth, which I never really notice in regular Dr. Pepper if it exists.
Seriously, my hatred for Dr. Pepper aside, this soda just sucks. If you want Dr. Pepper, drink Dr. Pepper. If you want less calories, go with Diet Dr. Pepper. Dr. Pepper TEN will be short-lived, I imagine, much like the other low-calorie colas that came before it (Pepsi One, Coca-Cola C2, etc.). Just do the world a favor and ignore this soda. The sooner you do so, the sooner this shit will be off the shelves.
Author’s Note: And if you want my opinion on the marketing strategy for this soda, the whole “It’s not for women,” campaign is just fucking stupid. As a guy, I can tell you that we really don’t give a flying fuck how many calories are in our sodas. And if we did, we’d rub two of our brain cells together and just buy the diet cola because we’re not fucking morons.
Yes, we’re diving right back into another of Whataburger's “All-Time Favorites” today. Don't blame me: it's not my fault these guys are running four promotional sandwiches at the same time. Also, my insider-info with Whataburger reports that at the end of this promotion (a rumored 9-month long promotion), whichever sandwich sells the most will stay on the menu permanently. Just some food for thought….
So today we’re looking at the Chop House Cheddar Burger. Let’s break it down, shall we? Two beef patties, melted cheddar cheese, “creamy steak sauce”, grilled onions and two slices of bacon on a toasted bun make up this limited-time only gem. Its build is very similar to Whataburger's A1 Thick & Hearty Burger, the only differences being the cheese and sauce used. The taste, however? Quite different entirely.
You’re going to want to attack this beast of a burger with an empty stomach, because it is heavy. The two patties alone make for a full tummy, but the thick, gooey, melted cheddar hits your gut like a lead weight. Also, and this is just my own nit-picking here, I find the onions a bit distracting. One of my main issues with Whataburger is how thick their diced onions are. I enjoy onions, but personally prefer them to be diced a bit finer.
Don’t let me dissuade you just yet! This sandwich is, altogether, pretty fantastic. Its taste is unique and should be experienced at least once by any burger enthusiast. While the onions and bacon and beef are pretty standard, it’s the sauce and cheese that really make this sandwich. The cheese is a mild, shredded cheddar that offers up a refreshing change of pace compared to the traditional American cheese. And the sauce? The creamy steak sauce is the ingredient the ties everything together. The flavor evokes the taste of eating a rare steak, elevating the sandwich to a level that is matched by no other on the Whataburger menu (as every burger, including this one, is cooked well-done).
So go forth and embrace the Chop House. It’s a well-crafted piece of Whataburger legend. If you think it may be too much to handle, they also offer up a “Junior” version as well that is made with their smaller Whataburger Jr. patties and is served on a smaller bun. It’s not my all-time favorite, but it certainly holds up. 4 out of 5.
“Just wanted to thank the few people already re-blogging and following me on here. I know so little about Tumblr, I find it amazing anyone saw my first review to begin with. So again, thanks guys.”—Josh, the Junk-Food Junkie
Over the past year, no less than four major fast-food chains have given their french fries a makeover. Today I’ll be discussing Wendy’s, Jack in the Box, Long John Silver’s, and lastly Burger King.
Let me start by saying this (and I’m speaking directly to the companies here): nobody gives much of a damn about your fries. McDonald’s has been voted “America’s Favorite Fries” more times in my life than I can count. Why does that matter? Because McDonald’s tastes like shit. Clearly, the only way to conquer the fry market is to make equally shitty fries. Instead, you guys do the opposite: you make “fresh”, or “natural” fries to compete with the Golden Arches. Unfortunately, it’s all futile. Either millions of Americans are chemically addicted to McDo’s limp, soggy, salty, greasy fries or those surveys are flat-out bullshit. I’m willing to believe either scenario, quite honestly. Don’t worry though, in your quest to reinvigorate the “fry market,” we’ve had some good things come out of it.
Let’s start with Jack in the Box. Awhile back, the house that Jack built did away with the fries I grew up with and introduced new (at the time) “Natural-Cut” fries. I honestly couldn’t have been more disappointed. The crispy, golden fries of old were gone and now we had these bland, boring fries. “They have SKIN on them!” Whoop-dee-fucking-doo. They sucked. Fortunately, seasoned curly-fries never left the menu. Fast forward to today where the natural-cut fries have gotten the boot and Jack in the Box is back to the delicious, salty, shoestring-cut fries. Yes, in a bizarre twist, I’m actually satisfied that the fries aren’t ”natural,” which is supposed to translate to “healthy” in the consumer’s mind. Jack in the Box must have gotten just as bored with the whole “natural” kick as their customers had. Unfortunately, Wendy’s missed that memo….
Wendy’s new fries are kind of a bizarre conundrum for me. I’ve always found their fries to be pretty boring, but their burgers and “Frosty”s were plenty reason to keep me coming back. So when Wendy’s released their new “Natural-Cut Fries with Sea-Salt,” I was intrigued. Unfortunately, these fries are pretty much just as boring as the old ones. From their appearance they certainly appear different. They’re thinner, they have the skin on them, but as far as taste goes, I’m completely baffled by how similar they taste to the old ones. It’s as if they didn’t change a thing. Maybe they’ve sold more fries since the makeover, but honestly: they’re the same damn thing. Maybe there’s less sodium, maybe they’re more “natural,” but if you eat fast-food religiously, do you honestly give a damn about that? For me, it’s about taste. I know what I’m eating is unhealthy, whether it says “natural” or not. So if you’re going to change your fries, they better offer me a new taste as well. Speaking of which….
No french fry overhaul has been more dramatic to me than that of Long John Silver’s. All my life, LJS has had these long, salty, greasy, shoestring fries. You could literally see how unhealthy these fries were, but when you looked around your plate… they just fit. Everything at Long John Silver’s is greasy, fried and unhealthy. The chicken and fish they serve you is plated on top of fried batter crumbs for God’s sake. So for the first time ever I was honestly pissed off about a restaurant getting new fries. Long John Silver’s has now introduced their own “natural cut” fries and behold: they’re just as boring as the other guys’. I don’t hate them, but they seem dramatically out of place.
So let’s re-cap: Jack in the Box has changed for the better and Wendy’s and Long John Silver’s fill me with an overwhelming sense of “Meh.” So how does Burger King stack up?
I remember when I was a kid that Burger King introduced “new” fries to compete with rival McDonald’s, promoting their fries as “crispier.” That was certainly true, and from that point on, I’ve always preferred BK's taters. Now the home of the Whopper has new “thicker cut” fries. Upon receiving them, I noticed the difference immediately. The fries look exactly the same, except it’s as if you’re looking at them under a magnifying glass. They’re just big. Really big, compared to the original fries. The biggest surprise was the way they tasted. While the other guys’ “thicker” more “natural” fries are soft and potato-ey, BK's new spuds are just as crispy as always. It's because of this that I'm inclined to say that, of the fries mentioned in this article, BK's new fries take the top spot. They took a good recipe and improved it (unlike the others who either did nothing to improve or just adopted new fries entirely).
The bottom line:
Burger King's new fries are amazing. If you like BK, you shouldn’t be disappointed. Big thumbs up.
Jack in the Box has returned to good ol’ shoestring potatoes and, in my opinion, it’s for the better. Thumbs up.
Wendy’s fries haven’t changed enough to really evoke a reaction out of me. I’d give it a thumbs up or a thumbs down if I actually cared enough to lift my arm over it.
Long John Silver’s new fries are a pretty big disappointment, really. They’re just too bland to compliment the food they’re served with. I liked how salty and greasy the old fries were because of how they complimented the food they were served with. These fries just seem like Long John Silver’s got the wrong shipment of fries one day and just rolled with it. Thumbs down.
Next time, we head back to Whataburger to check out another “All Time Favorite.” ‘Til then, stay hungry my friends.
If you live down south, you’re probably familiar with the restaurant chain Whataburger. If you aren’t, then I suggest you find the nearest one right this minute and go try it. Whataburger is one of my favorite fast-food joints of all time (and my number 1 when it comes to burgers). The food is uncharacteristically fresh for a fast-food chain, the employees bring your food out to you as if you’re sitting down to eat at a local diner, and the taste? In fast-food, not much else compares to the taste of Whataburger.
Right now, Whataburger is in the midst of a 9-month long promotion featuring four sandwiches they’re calling their All-Time Favorites. The promotional menu consists of the Chop-House Cheddar Burger, the A1 Thick & Hearty Burger, the Whataburger Patty Melt, and today’s item: the Honey BBQ Chicken Strip Sandwich.
The Honey BBQ Chicken Strip Sandwich (introduced in 2003) is quite possibly the best chicken sandwich the restaurant has ever put out. Something magical happens between those two pieces of bread…. The heat from the fresh chicken strips melts two slices of Monterrey jack just enough for it to wrap snug around them. And the sauce? Sweet, decadent honey barbecue sauce that ties all of the ingredients together, making each bite sweeter and more savory than the last.
This is the kind of sandwich that is a picky eater’s dream. Don’t like veggies? No problem: it doesn’t come with any. Still got a kid who only eats chicken strips everywhere you go? Voila: familiar chicken strip goodness in a sandwich that elevates the ingredient to unbelievably tasty levels.
No food is without criticism, however, and if I had one complaint about the sandwich it would be that it is a heavy sandwich. Thick, sugary barbecue sauce paired with two slices of cheese is enough to make you full only halfway through the sandwich, not to mention the fact that there are three chicken strips on it in the first place (which is the same amount of strips that come in their chicken strip box meal). If you’re a light eater, they do offer a “Junior” version, which is the same exact sandwich minus one chicken strip.
Also, as of 2010, you can get this sandwich on a bun or on two slices of thick-cut “Texas” toast. I recommend the bun, quite honestly. Texas toast is yummy, for sure, but it doesn’t hold the sandwich together as well as the bun does. The toast runs through the same toaster as the bun, but it goes through it twice (once for each side), so it gets quite a bit thinner than you’d expect. If you don’t mind the mess, go for the toast. Personally, I’d rather not fight to hold my sandwich together, so I go for the bun.
All in all, if you enjoy chicken strips and barbecue sauce (and really, who the hell doesn’t?): you’re going to love this sandwich. Despite being a large and heavy sandwich, Whataburger knocked this one out of the park. The Honey BBQ Chicken Strip Sandwich gets a solid 5 out of 5.
When you grow up in middle-class America, you’re no stranger to junk food. From the sugary sweets of Little Debbie to the salty sea of bacon and cheese that is Fast-Food: junk food is everywhere. Our whole lives we’ve been told to avoid such dietary abominations (and for good reason), but the simple fact of life is that a good number of us were raised on the stuff. McDonald’s hosted our birthday parties, Jell-O pudding was the sweet reward for defeating our sacked-lunch in the cafeteria coliseum, and why drink water when we can have our “nectar of the Gods” in the form of a sweet, syrupy can of our favorite soda?
We are ALL guilty of indulging our sick junk-food fetish every once in awhile (well most of us, anyway), but many of us are too ashamed to admit it, especially in today’s health-conscious climate. I’m here to tear down that wall. My name is Josh, and I am a Junk-Food Junkie.
I’m not bull-shitting you either, I eat a lot of junk-food (more than any normal person would care to admit). It’ll more than likely be the death of me one day, to be honest. Don’t panic: I do eat quite a bit of regular, healthy food as well. I just love food. From the finest of culinary presentations to a Wendy’s Baconator, dripping in grease, I love it all. I see food-critics in the papers and TV shows dedicated to highlighting the best of the best in the restaurant world… but where are all the reviews for the food and restaurants I see every day?
No food-critic in the right mind would give the time of day to some lowly fast-food joint or offer their opinion on a new flavor of Doritos. I eat fast-food. I eat Doritos. I’m eloquent. I’ve also been in and out of the food-industry for 7 of my 23 years on this planet. Why not me? There’s probably been a time in your life when a new sandwich came out at Burger King (or any other fast-food giant) and you thought to yourself: “Eh, I’d like to try it, but I know I like the number 2 and I don’t want to have wasted the money if that sandwich tastes like shit. I’ll just have the number 2.” Or perhaps you turned to your friend who doesn’t know what elaboration means and asked “Hey, how is that new flavor of Mountain Dew?” only to have them reply “It’s okay.” Gets frustrating, doesn’t it?
The simple solution is to just go try the stuff out for yourself. But, if everyone did that, then there’d be no need for critics period. So here I am, the Junk-Food Junkie, here to speak for the low-man on the food totem pole. Wherever the salt, fat, grease and sugar is, you can bet I’ll be there. Thank you.