McDonald’s The Italian Stack Review
The Italian Stack:
What they say:
With two succulent beef patties, creamy cheese made with mozzarella and a rich tomato sauce.
Calories: 647 kcal.
Great Tastes of the World concludes at McDonald’s for 2019 with The Italian Stack.
You would be forgiven for calling it The Italian Stack Mk2 – the burger on the menu this year is slightly different to the version we got for GTW 2017.
Last time, we got a Cheese and Paprika topped bun and this has been replaced by a Wheat semolina bun.
The (tomato) sauce, cheese and lettuce stays the same, but gone are the Pepperoni slices (now Streaky Bacon) and development have dropped the onions from the previous build and instead a new Pesto style sauce makes its debut.
For that reason (and the fact McDonald’s messed up our 2017 order – our review here) we are back to analyse this “new” double stack beef burger.
If you are new to the BURGER LAD® website or need a refresher, there have been various iterations of a McDonald’s burger inspired by the tastes of Italy, which has led us to the current Italian Stack.
As you can see from the images this is a promo picture perfect build today. I jest.
This was pure lettuce overload and it was spilling all over the Great Tastes of the World branded promotional clamshell.
It didn’t look impressive hence the score below.
Biting in though this is a respectable offering and does give you hints of Italy, which mainly come from the Pesto style sauce.
I’m not a massive fan of Pesto nor do I despise it. I found it to quite dominate the other flavours on-board with its distinct basil taste.
It’s enjoyable enough and the real treat is when you get the contrast with the luxurious and fruity tones coming from the Rich Tomato sauce – this is the real winner.
It’s a semi-decent burger when you ignore the terrible presentation.
The cheese is obviously welcome providing a subtle creaminess and that with the combination of the two sauces is the main highlight.
Bacon on here is pointless and predictably poor – The Italian Stack would be so much better with the pepperoni instead and we’ll discuss that aspect a bit more in detail below.
As for the lettuce, I don’t think it needs it and helps contribute to a scruffiness I can’t seem to shift out of my mind when writing this review.
The bun is also a downgrade IMO.
Overall, The Italian Stack is worth a try even if this Mk2 variation is slightly more disappointing than its illustrious predecessors.
Try it for the new basil pesto “mayo” – that with the gorgeous tomato sauce is the defining attribute of the last GTW ‘19 burger.
So what can 2019 tell us about what to expect from McDonald’s in 2020 and beyond?
Firstly, the swap on The Italian Stack from pepperoni to bacon suggests that the Golden Arches will be using less ingredients that are not on the core menu.
In the past, Great Tastes promos have featured varied toppings such as nacho chips, mixed peppers etc.
We expect to see less and less of these due to the “tougher trading environment” McDonald’s are facing.
I think 2019 has set a trend which will continue – less “specials” (apart from GTA/GTW) and more additional ingredients on normal menu items i.e. Double Quarter Pounder and Bacon Big Mac the prime examples.
Perhaps we could see the Double Big Mac (aka Mega Mac) in 2020? We shall see.
I also speculate this is down to the focused push on McDelivery and of course this also applies to eating in the restaurant or via the Drive-Thru – get the customer their food as soon as possible without having to mess about with clumsy “specials”.
And… cutting out ingredients that are only on one burger will reduce wastage/costs and ultimately lead to making more of a profit.
Sorry everyone. McDonald’s UK are not interested in new innovating burgers (see Maestro Range) but instead tweaking the classics and regurgitating Great Tastes with a twist or two.
In general, people visit McDonald’s for their tried and trusted favourites – why do you think the Signature Collection failed?
What we are led to believe is that the Big Tasty is set to be on the Festive Menu in 2019 – it appears the Christmas focus these days are on Lattes, Donuts and McFlurries.
With that, it looks like The Italian Classic Mk2 could be our last McD’s review this year.
Contemplating the points above, I am anticipating a quieter year on this website in 2020.
We’d like to thank all our readers for your incredible support.