Review: King’s Hawaiian Half-Pound Club from Arby’s
For the most part, I consider myself an equal-opportunity sandwich eater. It doesn’t matter if it’s a Cuban or a meatball sub; as long as there’s something stuck between bread, I’ll try it. That said, I do have a particular preference for Club sandwiches, which was why I had to check out the new King’s Hawaiian Half-Pound Club, the latest mega-meat creation from Arby’s. The King’s Hawaiian Half-Pound Club from Arby’s is described like this:
Join the half-pound club, club. Facilities include a giant heap of sliced roast turkey, an imposing pile of pit smoked ham and brown sugar bacon for days. They’ve got great amenities too, like melted Swiss cheese, mild & creamy Dijon spread and fluffy King’s Hawaiian® bun. No towels though. Gotta bring your own towels.
Oh, those clever Arby’s marketing people. Egregious puns aside, this is a sandwich you’re going to need a napkin for. Thankfully, Arby’s does provide those. At $6.99 for the sandwich alone, it’s not just one of the most expensive fast food sandwiches on the market, it’s priced higher than some combos. Thankfully, its size somewhat makes up for the price.No joke: I had trouble fitting my mouth around the sandwich. Not only do the ham and turkey get stacked high, but my sandwich didn’t lack for strips of brown sugar bacon. The cheese was melted perfectly, the lettuce and tomatoes were fresh, and the bun was perfectly toasted; basically, it’s one of the most visually pleasing sandwiches you could ask for. Unfortunately, it’s also one of the saltiest. I like to think I have a high salt tolerance, but the double whammy from the pit ham and turkey contributes to an overwhelming salty taste right off the bat. Thankfully, the salt gets cut but the glazed, candy-sweet bacon, but be warned: it takes a few bites to really get the relief.Salty flavor aside, the meats are excellent. The turkey is super juicy with a slight sweetness and deep roasted flavor, while the ham has a robust smoke flavor and succulent bite. I didn’t get a lot of flavor from the Swiss cheese or the Dijon sauce, but the sweetness of the bun and the tomato added a bit of necessary relief from the meat-fest. A few bites in, as I started to get into the center of the sandwich, the crispy texture contrast from the bacon really started to take effect.While I liked the sweetness of the bun, it’s actually a bit of a liability for the sandwich. With so many juices running from the meats, the bottom half of the bun soon became soggy. It’s just too soft for a sandwich like this, and if you don’t eat it in a hurry (a challenge, given the saltiness and size), you might find yourself finishing it with a knife and fork. I would have preferred the buns that Arby’s used for their previous iteration of brown sugar bacon sandwiches.You really can’t go wrong with any of Arby’s meats, but when stacked on the new King’s Hawaiian Half-Pound Club, the combination of pit ham and smoked turkey, while excellent, is a bit too much. The saltiness and moisture of the sandwich underdo otherwise flawless execution and flavors, contributing to a bite that is less than the sum of its parts. Still, there’s some great flavors at play, and I can guarantee you won’t be leaving on an empty stomach.
Pros: Exceptionally moist and flavorful turkey and ham that could rival those found behind any deli counter. Gooey melted Swiss cheese. Crispy, sweet contrast from the bacon. High quality toppings and presentation.
Cons: Salty flavor overshadows the variety of toppings. King’s Hawaiian bun can’t hold up to the moisture. Bacon is too sweet and caramel-like on its own.
Grubbing on-the-go: 5.00/10
Price: $6.99 for the sandwich alone and $8.99 for the combo
Overall GrubGrade: 6.00/10
More Info: arbys.com
710 calories, 26 grams of fat, 12 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 175 milligrams of cholesterol, 2930 milligrams of sodium, 60 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 29 grams of sugar, 59 grams of protein.