Takeaway Truth is an occasional Lifehacker feature where we compare marketing images against what you actually get served. Today: McDonald's Quarter Pounder BLT.
Fast food restaurants have been known to gild the lily when it comes to accurate depictions of their menu items. Far too often, the mouth-watering feast on the poster turns out to be a limp and oily morsel. In a bid to keep the fry-jockey overlords honest, we've decided to document the reality of fast food -- it was either that, or go postal like Michael Douglas in Falling Down.
For some reason, burgers seem to be the biggest culprits when it comes to inaccurate marketing -- which makes the eating part of this segment a lot less fun than it should be.
In the past, we've cast our truth-seeking spotlight on the KFC Parmy Stacker Burger ("barely any resemblance"), McDonald's Son Of Mac ("someone appears to have sat on our burger"), Nando's 'Little Hottie' Burger ("a limp, soggy pocket of sadness"), Oporto's Chicken And Cheese Burger ("not something we’d be particularly anxious to stick in our mouths") and Hungry Jack's Deluxe Country Burger ("the meat patty looks like a dog poo").
It's got so bad that I've begun to dread the sound of each burger chain's TV jingle, which usually signifies a new product I have to try.
So why are fast food burgers so rubbish? In most cases, the problem comes down to the burger's assembly, although the actual ingredients are often meaner looking too. Now we don't expect the underpaid kitchen staff to painstakingly recreate the masterpiece on the poster but it wouldn't hurt to exhibit a little care.
With that rant out of the way, it's time to look at the latest burger creation to tempt Australia's taste buds. After 40 odd years, McDonald's has decided that the time is nigh to update its signature Quarter Pounder burger. There are two new options on the menu: the Hot Hawaiian (which adds a slice of pineapple and chili sauce to the mix) and the BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato.) Check out the official advertisement for the new burgers below:
I plumped for the BLT as it has more extra ingredients than the Hot Hawaiian. I also snapped off the photos in-store, immediately after receiving the burger.
Here's how the burger looks in McDonald's splendid advertising:
And here's what we got served at a McDonald's Blaxland restaurant:
Here's a side-by-side comparison (the real burger has been swiveled 180 degrees to show the other side):
True to form, McDonald's Quarter Pounder BLT has pretty similar looking ingredients to the advert, with the exception of cheaper lettuce. However, the slipshod construction has turned it into a complete dog's breakfast. Clearly, the fast food giant needs to spend more time training its staff. We'd even be willing to wait a few extra minutes for an order -- just stop being so sloppy!
Truth rating: 5/10
Which fast food franchise or menu item would you like us to tackle next? Let us know in the comments section below.