Ghosts of Fast Food Past
Wow, so a lot has changed over the passed couple of months and sadly all for the worse. It's a really unprecidented time in this world as we deal with not only a scary virus but a crumbling economy. But let's not worry about that right now. Let us focus on happy thoughts and tonight I want to go back in time to a place when weird fast food ideas were allowed to flourish. They may be gone but they certainly are not forgotten.
Tonight we will start with Kentuky Fried Chicken’s “Dip ‘Ems” collection, specifically the Orange Ginger. I
rarely find myself at a KFC, especially after the Colonel died and they reanimated his corpse. I do, however,
remember this amazing sauce. It was almost like the McD’s McNugget Christmas sauces of the 80’s but with a little back heat. I didn’t think they could do it but this Orange Ginger may have surpased my 10 year old memory of what is holy.
I am sure there is a petition to bring this back and if not, I will start one. (I have spare time)
The Shanghai Whopper came and died in 2017 and while that is tragic, the real atrocity is how it took the Kung Pao Sauce with it. Sure, adding noodles to a burger may hint of the mysterious Orient but that Kung Pao sauce is a roundhouse kick to the mouth in all the best ways. (Let me know if this is getting uncomfortable)
I specifically remember this sauce because my (then) co-worker asked me to drive her through the drive-thru. She then asked for extra Kung Pao sauce and they charged her .50 for the extra pack. That girl lost her mind. Why? I don’t know but it sparked my curiousity because anything good is worth the cost.
I went the following weekend to tried it and brother/sister? That was life changing. Sad I don’t eat at many fast food restaurants because I didn’t know it went the way of the dodo. I just always thought we had one last dance.
McDonald’s Hot Mustard Sauce. As a kid I remember the only options for the McNuggets were Sweet and Sour or BBQ, everything else was for the wicked. In fact, I remember being a young child and was accidentally given Hot Mustard believing it to be the sweet tangy Sweet and Sour only to have my innocents ripped from my mouth like teeth strung to a doorknob. It was violent but...memorable.
Discontinued nationwide in 2015, many cheered but those who gave it a chance sobbed. In perfect irony, it was their best McNugget sauce all along. We just weren’t tough enough. WE DIDN’T KNOW!
For a brief period in 2017, Hot Mustard came back for a very short time. It was like Bob Cratchit popping in to remind you how good you had it but wasted it! And like a spicy tangy ghost, it vanished.
Some say it is still out there. Others say, “I have the perfect recreation recipe”. Fools.
Taco Bell Lava Sauce. In 2008/09 Taco Bell said “fuck yo stomach” and released the spicy Krakan with a series of Volcano tacos, nachos and burritos. The defining element in all of these was the exclusive Lava Sauce. To many the Devil, to othes an Angel.
Imagine a spicy cheese sauce with an element of a “Diablo” touch weighing in around 800 Scovile Units. That summarizes this powerful condiment and mysteriously enough, it hung around for five years and in 2013 it was discontinued. Every stoner died a little that day.
It had a brief appearance in 2015 with more Volcano action but was doused and put back in the vault and all we have left is the burns...in our heart.
McDonald’s FRIED Apple Pies. In 1992 McDonald’s started to react to the health-craze that had been sweeping America. One of their more boneheaded decisions was to take the famous McApple Pie and remove it’s soul by baking it instead of frying like it had always been done. That’s death for the dead.
So for almost 30 years we had to deal with soulless pies until recently when a few (I mean a very few) McDonald franchises made the decision to bring them back. So far I have found only Tampa and Hawaii to have the fried pies and that sucks. Not only do people have palm trees, beach and great weather, they have McD’s Fried Apple Pies and can return in taste to 1991. Life is unfair, man.
The Berserk X Burger. Man, when it comes to cross-promotions, Red Robin used to take the cake, er, burger. I remember this one when X-Man Apocalypse was out. I can’t remember the burger as much as I remember Beast from the commercial. He looked so silly like a really really cold werewolf.
I love Red Robin and their creative meat sandwich tie-ins. Makes me wish I didn’t go mainly plant based. No one makes an X-Man salad.
The Arch Deluxe. Wow, there have been some epic failures but when it comes to this sandwich, this was a prize pig. It’s not that the burger was all that bad but roll out and the $150 million dollar ad campaign missed so bad it was like my Great Aunt Rose trying to kick the game winning field goal at the Super Bowl. And she’s dead!
So, the idea was to have these Pulitzer Prize winning black and white shots of all these kids making gross-out faces because the Arch Delux was a “grownup” burger and they hated it. The problem was, it was 79% percent of the daily allowance of sodium and had enough fat to keep a lighthouse candle lit for a week. This wasn’t exactly the grownup ideal burger.
It debuted in 1996 and the marketing team was chained to the basement of McDonald’s Burger University by 1997.