Review: Bacon Clubhouse from McDonald’s
I’ve always felt like the special sauce on the McDonald’s Big Mac could potentially make a fan favorite out of something else. Up until now, the special sauce has been exclusive to the Big Mac and Mac Snackwrap and while the Big Mac holds its iconic status in the world of fast food burgers, I’ve held the opinion that it’s very overrated. What exactly makes the Big Mac so special? There’s too much bread and the burger patties are dwarfed by lackluster lettuce. What gives the Big Mac that edge, that flavor that people crave, is the special sauce. The new Bacon Clubhouse utilizes this sauce and offers up a much better overall premium experience that makes the Big Mac look completely outdated.
On the inside of the Bacon Clubhouse burger box it says, “Discover what you love… with ingredients like, thick cut apple wood smoked bacon, special sauce & caramelized grilled onions, all mingling on a soft & warm artisan roll.” These ingredients are true standouts with the Bacon Clubhouse, but there’s also a seasoned quarter pound burger patty, white cheddar, leaf lettuce, and a slice of tomato in the mix. Everything put together made for the most satisfying burger I’ve ever had from McDonald’s.
The burger patty is a quarter pound of 100% beef with a salt and pepper burger seasoning. It isn’t too oily or too dried out and hits a nice mark somewhere in the middle. I feel the applewood smoked bacon that was introduced last year is such a relief to new McDonald’s menu items. The old bacon was something that could easily mess up a decent sandwich experience and the new applewood smoked bacon can really give a boost to any burger. To me the applewood smoked bacon made this already great burger even better by hitting the salty pork flavor just right. Texture-wise, the bacon was cooked well enough to have some crispness and chewy parts without becoming too crumbly or rubbery.
The special sauce really is that X factor ingredient that your tastebuds will crave again and again. It’s a simple combination of various salts, sugars, spices, powders, pickle relish and everything you’ll find in mayonnaise. The result is a creamy, pink concoction that you’ll find stands out well with its sweet tangy and subtly sour qualities. Caramelized grilled onions at McDonald’s really pop in the flavor department and they fit in with a savory blend to balance out the flavors of the salty beef and bacon and the sweet and tangy taste of the special sauce. Although I’m a fan of the $1.00 Grilled Onion Cheddar, the white cheddar doesn’t stand out too well with that burger and the same can be said with its impact on the Bacon Clubhouse. White cheddar at McDonald’s is way too mild to impact the overall taste of this burger so outside of the soft texture, it’s quite forgettable. The bread is described as a “soft & warm artisan roll” and I’ll describe it as a heartier potato roll. I liked the bread a lot and felt it worked well for a burger. I’m so glad McDonald’s didn’t try to attempt ciabatta with this. The lettuce and tomato, were crisp and fresh and all around quite perfect… yes, you read that right. McDonald’s is actually consistently hitting their marks with freshness in my experiences over recent years. It’s good to see that with the jump to hit areas that are described as “premium”, McDonald’s is doing a respectable job in the fast food market.
At $4.69 for the burger alone, the Bacon Clubhouse seemed a tad pricey. The burger was indeed filling and I was left satisfied, yet with the combo price starting at $6.89, I always start to compare my overall meal to a fast casual restaurant. That said, for just the burger, the value still comes out as being about average for the higher side of fast food sandwiches. The bottom-line with the Bacon Clubhouse is I wouldn’t hesitate to buy it again and my praise outweighs the nitpicky criticism I struggled to find. McDonald’s really impressed me with this burger and I came away pleased that the special sauce felt so comfortable in its new home.
Pros: Well thought out mix of ingredients that for the most part worked really well together. McDonald's bacon is no longer pathetic. Special sauce. Caramelized grilled onions. New artisan bun. Fresh produce.
Cons: The white cheddar lacks the sharpness to be noticeable in flavor. Fast food combo meals around the $7 mark.
Grubbing on-the-go: 7.25/10
Overall GrubGrade: 8.75/10
More Info: http://www.mcdonalds.com
Serving Size: 9.5 oz (270g)
Calories - 720
Total Fat - 40 grams
Saturated Fat - 15 grams
Carbs - 51 grams
Sodium - 1470 milligrams
Sugars - 14 grams
Dietary Fiber - 4 grams
Protein - 39 grams