Review: Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger from Wendy’s
It’s the 4th of July and I’m sure to be grubbing on some burgers from the grill later today, but my weakness for new fast food burgers got the best of me this afternoon. The Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger from Wendy’s has been on my radar for months and it’s finally here.Wendy’s describes their new Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger like this:
A delicious new twist on our classic hot n juicy cheeseburger with a sweet & smoky honey mustard sauce, melted cheddar cheese and applewood smoked bacon all on a warm, soft pretzel bun. Now a specially crafted cheeseburger is closer than you think.
So it looks like pretzel bread is catching on lately and this is probably the beginning of a growing trend. Red Robin caught my eye with a pretzel bun in recent years with their Oktoberfest Burger and Steak ‘n Shake had one too. Just the other day, Sonic introduced us to Pretzel Dogs. It’s only a matter of time before other chains catch on and offer something of their own. I’m not quite sure who will execute the pretzel bun ingredient the best, but I’m starting out with the Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger from Wendy’s to get some experience under my belt.
It kind of baffles me that Wendy’s comes out with this Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger and makes the decision to stuff it with so many ingredients that you almost forget about the pretzel bun. While the pretzel bun is a dense and sturdy, passable bread for a burger, it’s really not too special with this item. Once you get past the look of the bun with its slit-crossed browned top bun, it doesn’t stand out in any way. Maybe you can say it’s a tad bit more soft and chewy on the inside, yet saying that feels like a stretch to find something worth describing. The fact of the matter is everything in between the pretzel bun is a lesson in failing to understand the importance of not overdoing it.The 1/4 lb. beef patty is a “fresh, never frozen” favorite of mine in the fast food world and it rarely disappoints. The balance between beefy, salty flavor and juiciness without being greasy is a highlight for me with Wendy’s burger patties. Our recent discussion on mistakes in fast food came to mind as soon as I laid my eyes on that familiar Wendy’s leaf of iceberg lettuce. The Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger is supposed to come with a spring mix and mine did not. Before tackling this burger and looking at the ad pictures and ingredients list, I felt like, “what’s the point of a spring mix?”… the fact that it was missing and replaced by the iceberg lettuce didn’t bother me… spring mix probably would’ve been equally as lost the iceberg. The slice of tomato and two small rings of red onion felt rather forced too as if to say they just have to make an appearance in all burgers.What stood out most to me with the Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger was the honey mustard sauce and the melted cheddar cheese. They both stood out mostly in the mess they made and the honey mustard alone stood out in the flavor department. I felt the burger was dominated by the taste of the honey mustard sauce which was indeed sweet and smoky. The mustard sauce flavor and the applewood smoked bacon slices together worked best to define the overall taste of the burger. I found the extra slice of cheddar in addition to the cheese sauce was overkill and would have preferred one or the other and not both. To cut down on the mess I’d probably choose to scrap the cheese sauce for just the slice of cheese. For me this wasn’t a “delicious new twist” as Wendy’s describes it and that’s because they failed to really highlight the pretzel bun. I wanted the pretzel bun to stand out more and what I was left with was just the memory of the price. For the 1/4 lb. burger patty size the Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger cost me $4.97 before tax. The choice of making it a double for the half-pound size was a buck more and I’m still shaking my head at the combo prices. The 1/4 lb. combo was priced at $7.19 and the 1/2 lb. combo was $8.19. In the end, I still say the idea of using pretzel buns in fast food products is something positive to look forward to, but I just wish the first Wendy’s attempt wasn’t so average.
Pros: Applewood smoked bacon and smoky/sweet honey mustard sauce flavors work well together.
Cons: Price. Too many ingredients takes the focus away from the pretzel bun. Messy.
Grubbing on-the-go: 5.00/10
Overall GrubGrade: 6.00/10
More Info: http://www.wendys.com/en-us/hamburgers/pretzelbaconcheeseburger
Calories - 680
Total Fat - 36 grams
Saturated Fat - 16 grams
Sodium - 1110 milligrams
Carbs - 46 grams
Sugars - 7 grams
Fiber - 2 grams
Protein - 37 grams