As a former culinary student and restaurant critic, I’m surprisingly not very picky when it comes to fast food.
However, in recent months, I’ve been beyond peeved by the new offerings at these establishments.
1) Panda Express’ new “Shiitake Kale Chicken”
I’m not of Chinese decent, so maybe I have no right to even critique a fast food restaurant that’s described as “gourmet Chinese” (those are Panda Express’ words, not mine).
But Panda Express had a special place in my heart. It was nostalgic of times I’d spend at the mall food court as a teenager. I was a sucker for their orange chicken and egg rolls. I knew it wasn’t authentic Chinese, but it was decadent and greasy and damn tasty. So why oh why did they have to try to jump on the kale bandwagon?! Hasn’t Panda Express been white-peopleized enough???I assure you, you’re being totally catfished by this picture. The kale resembles some sort of algae at a mall court near you.
Can we just keep kale at the farmer’s market and in salads where they belong? Why are you ruining my perfectly inauthentic greasy Chinese food court experience?!
2) 7-11′s Hipster Mustache Mason Jars
Nothing is legit these days unless it comes from a mason jar, right?
For $3, you can get your own mason jar Slurpee mug (PS, authentic mason jars can cost like 50 cents each on amazon). If you didn’t feel hip enough drinking a Slurpee from a mason jar, 7-11 is also selling neon colored novelty straws complete with a hipster mustache attached.
Because why look like yourself while drinking A Slurpee when you can look like Tom Selleck or Burt Reynolds?
3) Taco Bell’s Waffle Taco
Taco Bell recently started serving breakfast. This surprised me as most of their customers are drunk/stoned people that I didn’t think would drag themselves to Taco Bell early enough to score breakfast.11am? Your standard Taco Bell stoner isn’t up before noon!
I give Taco Bell credit for being honest and shameless with their new waffle taco, because it really is as ridiculous as they advertise it to be. What bothers me most is that it doesn’t taste as remotely fun as it sounds, it’s completely bland. It’s so tasteless that I just want to put more salt or sugar and I’m pretty sure it’s laden with sodium and sugar that adding even more syrup will send me into diabetic shock.
4) KFC’s “Go Cups”
As if checking Twitter or Facebook wasn’t enough of a distraction while driving, now you can text, drive, AND eat fried chicken on your commute!
KFC’s launched “Go Cups”: containers that fit into most cup-holders that can hold your fried chicken, wings, or sandwich and has a “special” separate compartment for your potato wedges. I’m not angry at KFC for the food, I’m mad that they’re promoting eating grease while driving. I hope KFC’s pays for all the car accidents this may cause.
I rather KFC inject people with chicken and mashed potatoes through an IV. At least it’ll be less likely to cause an accident.
5) Panda Express’s Bacon Orange Chicken
Alas, I’m back at Panda Express.
As if the “Kale Chicken” wasn’t offensive enough, they’ve also added bacon to their orange chicken. I’m sure the marketing team was all:
“Americans love bacon, Americans love orange chicken…..let’s just combine them!”
Orange chicken was a formula that worked and didn’t need to be messed with. Two rights can sometimes be really, really wrong.
And now….2 new fast food item that surprisingly don’t suck:
1) Subway’s Flatizza
Is it the best pizza? Hell no.
However, it’s better than most subway sandwiches (I think their bread resembles the texture of a loofah sponge). This can easily pass as a gourmet artisan masterpiece if you’re stoned or drunk. Eaten sober, it’s decent and probably the only thing I’d order at Subway at the moment.
2) Taco Bell’s Cinnabon Delights
One of Taco Bell’s new breakfast menu options are these mini cinnamon-roll-esque nuggets which I bashfully admit are kinda awesome.
They don’t really belong on a “breakfast menu”, they belong on a dessert menu. Bottom line: it’s mini-churros with cream cheese icing.
Now if you’d excuse me, I have some kale to hate.