This week, I reached out, at long, long last, for an order of Cheesy Bacon Fries at America's No. 1 burger barn, McDonald's, with 15,000 restaurants, like, everywhere. Some day soon, I expect to see a McDonald's pop-up restaurant in the back of a McDonald's restaurant, with a McDonald's food truck parked out front.
McDonald's is late to the Cheesy Bacon Fries race. Wendy's has its popular, over-the-top Baconator Fries, and Shake Shack, Arby's, Jack in the Box and even Taco Bell also have meat and cheese-splattered fries, too. The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo will be bustin' out bbq cheesy fries later this month.
Here's the Cheesy Bacon Fries breakdown: a large order of McDonald's fries topped with real Cheddar cheese sauce and bacon crumblies. So simple. So elegant. So don't even think of asking for some of my fries. Get your own.
Total calories: 560. Fat grams: 34. Sodium: 1,330 mg. Carbs: 57 g. Dietary fiber: 4 g. Protein: 15 g. Manufacturer's suggested retail price: $3.29. Your mileage may vary.
McDonald's finally offering Cheesy Bacon Fries is a big deal. In fact, McDonald's is going whole hog on bacon, slapping Applewood-smoke bacon slices on its Quarter Pounders and Big Macs. The best of the bacon bunch is Cheesy Bacon Fries, though. They're decadently delicious, nothing good about them, except they're great. Gooey cheese, crispy salty bacon on "World Famous" McDonald's fries.
This is almost unfair ... makes me want to un-do my belt a notch, sit in my car alone, seat in full recline, and enjoy the moment. (Editor's note: please don't, Ken.)
I once asked the owner of a rival burger joint, what is so darn special about McDonald's fries? They're just Russet, Burbank and Shepody potatoes, sliced thin and fried in vegetable oil, right? Salt is salt, right? He said, "right, but they have their proprietary fryers, and proprietary oil and proprietary salt shakers. They do have their secrets."
I said, OK, then you should hire McDonald's vice-president of fries and make that person president of your fries, and tell them to spill the beans." But nobody listens to me.
Here's why fries are critically important to fast food chains. When you pull out of the drive-through, what's the first thing you dig into? It's the fries, they're always sitting on top of the bag. There's your first impression of that restaurant.
McDonald's burgers? Really nothing special really. McDonald's fries? The best. Let's go to McDonald's for lunch.
Ken Hoffman reviews a new fast food restaurant item every Wednesday. Have a suggestion or a drive-thru favorite? Let Ken know on Twitter.