Takeaway Truth is an occasional Lifehacker feature where we compare marketing images against what you actually get served. Today: The McDonald's Chicken Schnitzel & Citrus Mayo Roll and Chicken Schnitzel & BBQ Roll.
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.
The McDonald's 'M Selections' are a range of premium burgers advertised under the slogan: "it’s a little bit fancy". The cute phrasing appeals to blue-collar customers while simultaneously not over-promising on quality (i.e. -- it's only a little bit fancy.) Well played, marketing dudes.
The range retroactively includes the Mighty Angus and Grand Angus burgers as well as two all-new menu choices: the Chicken Schnitzel & Citrus Mayo Roll and the Chicken Schnitzel & BBQ Roll.
The Chicken Schnitzel & Citrus Mayo Roll comes with a crumbed chicken schnitzel, lettuce, onion, carrot and citrus mayo on a toasted sourdough roll.
The Chicken Schnitzel & BBQ Roll substitutes the mayo and carrot for southern–style BBQ sauce and Swiss Cheese. Otherwise, both burgers are much the same.
The Chicken Schnitzel & BBQ Roll packs in a generous 3040kJ of energy along with 1580mg of sodium and 11.2g of sugar (and that's just for the burger). The Chicken Schnitzel & Citrus Mayo Roll is slightly healthier: it has 3010kJ of energy, 4.4 grams of sugar and 1370mg of sodium.
By contrast, a Big Mac has 2060kJ of energy, 5.9g of sugars and 859mg of sodium. They're not particularly healthy, in other words. Check out the official video for the new products below.
McDonald's has really lifted its game when it comes to the way it packages its products. Like the French Toast Fingers, the 'M Selections' Chicken Schnitzel Rolls are enclosed in an inviting box that actually does look 'fancy'. Check it out:
But we're not here to judge the packaging. As the old adage goes; it's what's inside that counts. Here's the McDonald's McDonald's 'M Selections' Chicken Schnitzel Rolls look like on the poster:
And here's what we were served from a Blaxland outlet in NSW:
For once, the assembly process actually isn't too terrible -- apart from some sloppily applied mayo that caused some spillage, the results are much neater than the typical McDonald's fare. We guess it must be easier to work with sourdough rolls than hamburger buns.
The size ratios of the bread and schnitzel also seem to match up fairly well. Our only reservation is that the onion is a lot larger and thicker in the real photo but that's a relatively small quibble.
All in all, the McDonald's store we visited did a reasonable job of making the 'M Selections' Chicken Schnitzel Rolls look like the product on the poster. If you feel like a Schnitzel for lunch, you won't be disappointed.