I’m trying to take this seriously, but this entry pretty much writes itself.
When I was in college, my friends and I would look at the website This is Why You’re Fat, which post pictures of all things bacon-wrapped and cheese-stuffed; excessively decadent food monstrosities that people would make and submit pictures. While being interviewed on the podcast Lea and the Internet, I recalled the website and we noted that most of its current posts are no longer homemade concoctions, but readily available for purchase, which demonstrates a general shift in our culture toward over-the-top Instagrammable food excesses.
Burger King has been embracing this food trend, producing the Mac ‘n Cheetos, the Cheetos Chicken Fries they introduced just this week, and the Whopperito: a hybrid between their Whopper cheeseburger and a burrito. As an established fan of the Whopper, I optimistically anticipated the Whopperito to simply be a Whopper in a tortilla.
Which would have been good. If that’s what they’d done.
I want to tell you it was simply disgusting, but it mostly just doesn’t work. To their credit, there’s plenty of beef in it, but it’s beef that’s been ruined. They start with their chargrilled burger patties, which is a very good place to start, because they’re central to the BK taste. They hack ’em into chunks and then immediately take a nosedive by adding some kind of Tex-Mex sauce. It makes it taste like Wendy’s chili — which I should note I also really like — but WHY DID THEY DO THAT? They cover up most of that Flame Grilled™ flavor. Is the Whopper not good enough? They have a good thing going here, and they’re using the Whopper name in vain because they clearly don’t have faith in their own top-selling product. They wrap it up — poorly — in a tortilla with sliced tomatoes, diced onions, pickles, and iceberg lettuce. It’s all clearly pulled directly from the same bins they use to make burgers so they wouldn’t need, like, twenty ingredients on the line for one stupid hype beast, but they all just taste fucking bizarre, texturally. Diced tomatoes in a burrito, people. Standard burger pickles are out of place in this Tex-Mex wasteland. Jalapeños are an obvious choice in the bastardization they’ve created, but I’d probably be bitching about them, too, in this heathenistic abomination. And then there’s some kind of queso sauce that tastes more of the plasticine movie theater nacho cheese than the American cheese that’s a burger’s best friend, just in case you thought all processed cheeses were created equal. And it was painfully missing the mayo and ketchup that round out the Whopper flavor. But I guess that’s what the Tex-Mex sauce and plastic cheese are there for: to make you wish there was mayo and ketchup on it. And American cheese. And a bun. And it was an actual Whopper.
In the end, it’s much more a product of our culture than a strong attempt at making a tasty burrito. They either should have directly translated the Whopper to a burrito, literally swapping out the bun for a tortilla, or gone all the way making a Tex-Mex burger-burrito, with sour cream, jalapeños, and all the Tex-Mex sauce and queso their little hearts desire. They appear to have been going for the easiest way to execute a zany food item without interrupting their usual operation. At $2.99, I’d rather pay $4.99 for the Whopper with cheese that I also ate for unneeded comparison, and to wash the taste out of my mouth as the King intended.