There is something to be said for going with your gut at the drive-through window. I was torn between the two burgers BK is featuring to celebrate 55 years of the Whopper, and was tempted to go with the "Angry Whopper" (which comes with spicy "onion petals," "angry sauce," jalapeños and habanero cheese), but thought the Wisconsin burger would make a nice one-to-one comparison with the McDonald's CBO burger I recently reviewed.
(And to be honest, the guaranteed agita of an Angry Whopper was ultimately not that appealing.)
After grabbing the burger, we made a very quick stop at Kroger and then home, where I was disappointed before even taking a first bite.
The first thing I noticed was how completely un-melted the cheese was -- something I have come to realize is a frequent issue at BK. The cheddar cheese was a nice sharp, flavorful Wisconsin cheddar -- a big improvement over the usual -- but that it wasn't melted, even after a stop at the grocery store on the way home, seems to imply that even the burger itself was never really hot to begin with.
The bacon was really nicely done, achieving that perfect balance of crispy edges and chewy fat. (Perfect for me, that is.) The combination of ketchup, mayo and tomato does a good job of adding moisture that the sandwich desperately needs, due to a significantly dry patty. Where the McD's CBO burger surprised me with its juiciness, the BK Wisconsin Cheddar was shamefully dry.
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Another redeeming quality of this burger, however, is the thick slices of pickle which play really nicely with the cheese and bacon. I'm a sucker for a big pickle (ZING!), and this Whopper gets points for the effort. But overall I can't recommend this over the McD CBO on that basis alone -- especially when one considers the NINE HUNDRED AND FIFTY CALORIE "price tag."
A 950-calorie burger is just effing bonkers. If I'm going to toss out almost my entire day's worth of calories on a fast-food burger, I want it to be hot and juicy. I want the cheese to be melting all over the place. And I want the bun to be more than "soft and white bread-y." NINE HUNDRED AND FIFTY CALORIES on a subpar burger? Especially when compared to the CBO's superiority on a taste level, at almost 200 fewer calories? It's no contest. CBO all the way.