Fast Times: Burger King California WHOPPER®

When I saw the commercial for the new Burger King California WHOPPER I thought: "Hey, I like guacamole! And hey, I think I used to like WHOPPERS, too!" And since my last experience at Burger King had been so surprisingly positive, I felt like I had a good shot at a yummy lunch. I rolled up to the drive-thru at the BK on Westheimer, near Montrose, and ordered up a California WHOPPER, hold the mayo, for a working lunch at home.

Having never eaten a California burger in California, I'm not sure I'm qualified to judge "California burgers" in general, but I do have a few thoughts on this fast food version.

I will hand it to BK: unlike recent experiences at Wendy's and Whataburger, here my order came out perfectly. All components requested were present, and the mayo I requested be 86ed was not applied to the burger. As an aside, I was shocked to learn that requesting no mayo on this particular WHOPPER slashes a whopping 160 calories--do they really put three or more tablespoons of mayonnaise on burgers? Mayonnaise eaters, how much do you generally apply to a sandwich? Three tablespoons seems like a lot.

After musing about the mayonnaise for a moment I began to eat. After my first bite, I was left with one thought: Where the hell is the famous flame-broiled flavor? I think this may be the most bland fast food hamburger I've had yet -- and that's saying something. Flavorless tomatoes added no zing, melted cheese added an unpleasant gumminess but no richness or even saltiness, and the pathetic schmear of guacamole was undetectable. Six layers of blandness for $4.30? I'll skip BK for lunch and stick with breakfast.

Nutrition information: 660 calories (with mayo, 820), 38 g fat (15 saturated), 95 mg cholesterol, 8 g sugar, 1260 mg sodium, 50 g carbs, 38 g protein

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