Review of the McWhopper


What they say:

All the tastiest bits of your Big Mac and our Whopper, united in one delicious, peace-loving burger. Developed together, cooked together, and available in one location for one day only – Peace Day 2015.

Price: £6.68.

Calories: Unknown.

Well, it might be reasonable to say that Burger King has a bolder marketing team than McDonald’s. They managed to use National Burger Day to suggest the McWhopper to McDonald’s, ostensibly as a nod to World Peace.

Now, that’s possibly a stretch, but McDonald’s seemed to fall hook, line, sinker and copy of the Angling Times for it, issuing a poorly-worded response, resulting in BK’s marketing team almost certainly running around saying 1-0.

Two fast food flagships become one…

Safe to say it isn’t happening. But even if it did, it’s safe to say it wouldn’t bring peace in our time. It was always just going to be a marketing ploy, and it worked admirably in BK’s favour.

That said, in the absence of agreement between good people and extremists, and between the two behemoths of the fast food world, there is BURGERLAD.COM and you know it.

We are therefore awfully excited to bring you the McWhopper. Where Kim Jong Whatever and that Salmond bloke have failed, we bring you the ultimate olive branch and symbol of unity.

In the sentiment of nationalists and extremists, No sometimes doesn’t mean No, so here is what you’ve all been searching for.

Inside the famous boxes…

It’s probably safe to say that the vast majority of you have had a Big Mac, and have had a Whopper.

Hopefully you have also read our earlier review of the Half Pound Grudge Match. Armed with all of that, this review quite possibly isn’t going to surprise you in any way, and even before I get stuck in, I’m imagining this tasting exactly how I’d expect.

Anyway, my location today involves a BK and a McDonald’s about 10 minutes apart from each other. Perfectly possible, traffic permitting, it’s simply a question of deciding which one to go to first. I think, given the social media battle was clearly won by BK, I’m going to go to McDonald’s first, to ensure the Whopper is slightly warmer than the Big Mac.

Admiral needs some lessons in burger presentation…

The best laid schemes, etc and I got it all mixed up and ended up at BK first.

I ordered my Whopper (eventually – there was a big queue) and was given my burger in a box. No paper bag, so obviously it would cool.

I didn’t think anything of it until the same happened at McDonald’s and I realised that the new rule about paying for plastic bags must also apply to paper bags (which is stupid if it’s to do with recycling) but at any rate I wasn’t even offered a paper bag at either, 5p or not.

There were only ten minutes between the two and I was getting stuck into the social media frenzy that is the McWhopper within a very short time.

It took a little work to build it, removing the bottom of the Big Mac and the top of the Whopper and putting the top / middle of the Big Mac onto the bottom of the Whopper. At this point I realised the Whopper had no cheese, and the Big Mac’s cheese was all stuck to its bottom patty. So I took out the McDonald’s patty from my new creation and swapped it with the cheesy one.

Are you still following?

Behold the McWhopper…

There isn’t a huge difference in the look or the taste of the two types of bun, so at first glance the McWhopper looked pretty authentic. What is noticeable, though, is the difference in diameter. Burger King’s creations are generally wider and this showed. You couldn’t really have built this the other way round without making it look obviously top-heavy.

As I tucked into it, I certainly got a bit of both. As I said, it really tasted exactly the way you’d have imagined. The stand-out flavours were naturally the Big Mac sauce and the flamey meat taste of BK’s patty. Loads of lettuce, with the tomato and pickle putting in a substantial tuppenceworth as well.

Everybody knows what a Whopper tastes like and everybody knows what a Big Mac tastes like. The Big Mac sauce and the pickles particularly giving the whole thing perhaps a slightly stronger McDonald’s flavour, but that flame-grilled taste was ever-present throughout.

The McWhopper in all its glory…

I’m very well aware that I’m not saying a great deal about how the McWhopper tasted, but that’s because there isn’t much. We’ve covered the standard McDonald’s and Burger King patties so often there’s nothing new to say. Thin, lightly seasoned, adequate but not outstanding in both cases. And both thin too.

Standard toppings too. Neither of these fast food flagships goes out of the ordinary – the more interesting stuff is usually reserved for the limited promotions at both companies. I’m sure glad I switched the patties though, and got the cheese. It would’ve been a lot less tasty without it.

I’ll have a “peace” of that…

The fun of doing it and buying into the whole social media buzz around the McWhopper was certainly a lot more exciting than eating it.

Sometimes something from the permanent menus of either BK or McDonald’s really hits the spot but for me, today wasn’t one of those days and while I enjoyed the making of this, the eating of it was really neither here nor there.

What made this better perhaps than some other secret menu items is the fact that the bottom was wider, and the whole thing not to high and wobbly. As a construct it worked pretty well.

To offer this in actual BK and McDonald’s branches would’ve been a logistical nightmare and realistically anyone who thought this was really going to happen on a brand scale is probably off their chump. For that reason, McDonald’s was right of course.

By suggesting this publicly, Burger King were always going to win the marketing battle, whichever way McDonald’s chose to respond, but one can well imagine some pretty cross-looking faces at the latter when this exploded onto social media.

However, the response, whether it was written by the boss “Steve” or someone in the marketing department, was to me rather cringe-worthy and perhaps could’ve benefited from a little more time and care, even if ultimately they didn’t want to do the McWhopper.

Burger Lad first conceived the idea of this in 2013…

So in summary, what’s the point?

Well, it’s a marketing game. Nothing to do with world peace really, and probably won’t affect either fast food giant greatly in the long run.

For the rest of us, purely a bit of fun. Is it the best fast food burger ever? No.

And it’s not even the best “secret item” either – that accolade belongs to the Zinger Mac in my opinion.

As for McDonald’s and Burger King, well in the UK McDonald’s releases Great Tastes of the World so will BK counter in the so-called “burger wars”?

That excites me a lot more so I, just like you, will be watching for news and updates on both from Burger Lad®.

Admiral Burgerbar