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Fast Food Nation

Fast Food Nation

Fast food may not be the best option for weight watchers, but I do believe some items are worth that extra time on the treadmill and yoga classes.
Siming T
Siming T

Funny how this was a returning entrant to the local fast food scene after so many years, and people could actually queue for hours for it when it was also available in Malaysia. I was somewhat lucky to spot empty seats in the restaurant on a Sunday at 11.00am, so I decided to walk in to reconnect to my growing up years.

I had not recalled eating any burger back then, but the Cream Cheese Beef Burger Combo with Root Beer Float upgrade. Priced at S$11.50, I was quite pleased that the food was ready while I barely touched my Root Beer Float. Well, much as the scoop of cream cheese added a different twist to the burger as compared to the traditional cheddar slice, the burger on its own was on the dry side. The Curly Fries was lukewarm and most of them were clumpy, but I was not wrong to conclude that everything seemed close to the nostalgic taste.

For nostalgia sake, I would come back once in a while for a meal or something, but it somehow could still work harder to match up with its fast food competitors to justify the price point. And hopefully, people do not steal their glass mugs like in the past.

And we’d have thought that not many people would be queuing up for an hour for fast food that was double the price of Carl’s Jr, look at what the new entrant received even after two weeks from its official opening!

The Shack Stack Burger (S$14.30) was acclaimed to be the best of both worlds, with a single beef patty and a crisp-fried Portobello mushroom patty filled with melted cheese, the bursting flavours blew me away because it was totally delicious. Apart from being packed with flavour, this burger left me hesitant, because I was torn between finishing up the burger quickly (the waiting time was slightly more than 20 minutes) or to stop and take a cheese pull selfie.

Although topping up a fries and a drink could easily burst a typical fast food budget (not surprised to see some diners sharing a burger between two persons), I thought the fries and drink could easily be shared, given the big portions. If we were not so used to consuming a burger with a (rich) milkshake, even a cup of small refreshing Lemonade (S$4.30) could be shared by two persons because of it’s concentrated sourness.

Shake Shack had definitely reminded me of the initial years of Carl’s Jr in Singapore, but let’s hope that it’s quality and portion sizes could outlast the hype.

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Okay, so McDonald’s Singapore finally launched their D24 Durian McFlurry, about three weeks after their Malaysian counterparts made it available.

The similarity of this cup of ice cream (S$4.00) is that there were real traces of durian in the durian sauce they used. Unfortunately, I somehow reckoned that the Singapore version tasted a bit too heavy on artificial sugars, hence the sweetness was a tad too distinct, also considering that the McFlurry would be undermixed most of the time. Good for a try, but nothing could replace the real King of Fruits no matter what.

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After a long term disappearance, the popular McGriddles made an aggressive comeback with its availability through the whole day. Depending on how different restaurants prepare it, some would come with gooey cheese, while others were served lukewarm with the cheese shape pretty much intact.

The main difference from the standard SME is that the English muffins were replaced with maple syrup “embedded” griddle cakes. As far as I am concerned, most restaurants should prepare ample stock of this to please the soccer fanatics during the FIFA World Cup period, but I would not be surprised if these 24-hour branches would run out of stock quickly.

The bigger question is whether the McGriddles will remain in the menu after this promotion period.

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The new promotional meal by McDonald’s turned out to be more of a hit than a miss for me. The Fish & Fries Special, comprising a Fish & Fries, a beverage and a Chocolate Pie, left me wanting for more.

What was amazing about the meal was that the fish was well-battered and fried to the point of a light crunchiness, yet not giving it a very oily feel. Though part of it felt like I was having Long John Silver’s, the fact that it was paired with their tartar sauce and the signature French Fries had surely not disappointed me, though I really wished there were more.

The other big “wow” was their Chocolate Pie, with rich molten chocolate oozing out from the pie when eaten hot. Sure, it will never be as euphoric as compared to eating a Lava Cake, but the quick sell-out of this dessert was already very telling of the diners’ approval.

Lunar New Year has always been an important festival for many Singaporeans, and in the recent years, Lunar New Year celebrations will not be complete without a feast at McDonald’s.

Just launched on 25 January, the Double Prosperity Beef Burger is always something I will go for. Just the succulent beef patties coated with black pepper sauce and topped with chopped onions already make me believe that I will get some good luck coming. And it also calls for the all-time favourite Prosperity Twister Fries.

As for the Red Bean Pie, that is something that I will always go for because I like red beans. However I felt that the filling can be a bit sweeter, even though the sweetness (or lack of it) can be compensated with the Lychee McFizz.

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Fancy some of the promotion item from KFC — the Mac ‘N Cheese? It is really kind of basic, with macaroni topped with popcorn chicken before pumping the nacho cheese on top.

And I’d say that it is a deal to get this with their super value meal, because for S$5.00 only, you will also get a regular size drink plus a piece of KFC chicken (choice of wing or drumstick). Most importantly, this one here comes across as a value price with relatively decent portion.

An expansion of the Angus Beef Burger from the Signature series, the Angus Beef Burger (S$6.95) comes with a patty that is 100% Angus beef, aioli herbs, grilled mushrooms and caramelised onions.

But if you ask me, the reason why I ordered this was partly to try it with the Cheesy Loaded Fries (additional 80 cents for the upgrade with every Extra Value Meal), which many have complained of the very limited cheese given in the past few days. Well to me, the sauces were of a decent proportion in my case, but it felt like the portion of fries was about the same as a medium size, so it really didn’t satisfy my hunger for potatoes.

Back to the burger, somehow I didn’t feel the same kind of satisfaction from a Burger King’s Mushroom Swiss Double Burger, or even from a Big Mac. Putting all considerations together, I think I would not miss this one when it’s off the menu, even if it is meant for a limited time only.

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Getting a Double Samurai Beef Burger seems to be mandatory for fans of this Japanese-inspired item, because beef, teriyaki sauce and mayonnaise combination is just so right. Moreover, because of the fact that there are two beef patties instead of one, it’s impossible to miss the taste of ground beef.

And since I’m already at it, so why not take up the Seaweed Shaker Fries too? 🤤

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One of the promotional items during the launch of Despicable Me 3 theme in McDonald's is this Banana Mudpie McFlurry (S$2.90). Well given that the ice cream soft serve is made of banana-flavoured milk (think Dutch Lady), pairing it with chocolate would be the safest bet. But what's nice about this is that there is some crunch from the Oreo cookies, making this a pretty enjoyable dessert.

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After the success from last year's launch of the promotional Signature Collection, McDonald's came back with two new burgers for customers to choose from: Buttermilk Crispy Chicken Burger and Classic Angus Cheese Burger.

Somehow, holding the burger gives me a feeling that it is more solid, like it is some "atas" burger. The overall combination of the fried chicken thigh flavoured with buttermilk, Colby cheese, purple cabbage coleslaw and sliced pineapples was pleasant to my palates. Not too sure about their Roasted Sesame with Seaweed Shaker Fries though, but ordering a regular meal (S$8.95) is already good enough for me. Definitely best eaten fresh (i.e. on the spot).

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The porridge that they serve is rich in flavour, but when there is not much traces of chicken, I wonder if it is purely seasoning taste.

Worth a try, especially if you want something different from Big M's breakfast sets.

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