Did you know Burger King has a summer menu? I did not, until now. I have been writing reviews for almost three years now and, while I do have the memory of a goldfish, I don’t think I’d ever heard of it. What a shitty food reviewer.
But I know about it now, and I sure am glad I do, because that means I get to eat and write about the Bacon Sundae. I think history will show that there’s nothing better than throwing bacon onto or into someplace it shouldn’t be. Did I say better? I meant nauseating and traumatic. Why do they keep doing this to me? Oh, right. The hype.
Burger King describes their sundae as “Sweet and savory made with cool, creamy and velvety vanilla soft serve, chocolate fudge and smooth caramel, made to order with our new thick hardwood smoked bacon.”
I have to say, I’m relieved they went with caramel over the bacon-flavored syrup that Jack in the Box uses in their Bacon Shake. My unease would have gone from “eh, I can do this” to “please don’t make me vomit, seriously guys, I can’t take this anymore”.
The official description glosses over the actual function of the bacon in the sundae, but it’s basically a chocolate and caramel sundae sprinkled with pieces of bacon and garnished with a somewhat disturbing-looking full strip of bacon. It’s not often that I’m disturbed by garnishes. Piece of parsley on the edge of my plate? Kind of a waste of vegetation if you ask me, but completely normal. Celery in my Bloody Mary? Cumbersome, but good for stirring, at least. Sundaes need cherries on top. Not bacon.
I didn’t realize the bacon “garnish” would be a full strip of bacon. When I went to pull it out, thanks to the stickiness of the caramel and chocolate, half the sundae came with it and I almost lost half my ice cream treat on the kitchen counter. Most of the blob fell back in the cup, fortunately, and what you see here is the full glory of my bacon garnish. Looks delicious.
I actually tried the garnish strip first, thinking that it would either assuage my fears or prepare me to steel my stomach for the upcoming horror.
To my surprise, it did the former. The bacon was indeed thick, crunchy, and smoky; it far exceeded the quality of the side of limp bacon you’d get at Denny’s or the sad, flavorless bacon strips that come on most fast food bacon cheeseburgers. Even the part with the vanilla ice cream on it was not unpleasant, which was encouraging.
The vanilla ice cream was your typical soft serve, and the chocolate was thick and rich, much like you’d find in a typical sundae. The caramel was also thick, although I found that much of it had found its way to the bottom of my cup. In fact, it would have made a perfectly enjoyable chocolate caramel sundae in and of itself.
But this is not a typical sundae. It’s a Bacon Sundae.
I was surprised to find that I got at least a few bits of bacon in each bite of my sundae. I don’t know if there were bits hiding underneath the surface, or if the King has some sort of bacon magic, but it seemed like there were more pieces of bacon in the cup than appeared on the surface. Bacon magic.
It was obvious that they used the same bacon for the crumbles as was used for the garnish, because it was just as thick and smoky, and even stayed crisp in the ice cream, which is no small feat. I tried to get bacon, ice cream, chocolate and caramel in each bite, and I have to say, I was not repulsed!
Somehow, the vanilla and the bacon worked well together, creating that sweet and savory sensation as promised by BK. The chocolate was so rich that it actually overwhelmed most of the bacon taste, but the crunch combined with the chocolate was a great combo.
Conversely, it was the bacon that swallowed up a lot of the caramel flavor. It almost seemed like there was a disconnect; first I’d taste the bacon, then the caramel, but no real caramel-bacon taste. Having conquered vanilla-bacon and chocolate-bacon already, I was disappointed that the two didn’t want to be friends. It’s hard to believe I just said that. I wanted to taste caramel-bacon. What is happening to me?
I ate the entire sundae, which left me plum surprised. I went into Burger King’s Bacon Sundae with expectations of revulsion, but found myself actually kind of enjoying it. The quality of the bacon was fantastic and stayed crunchy even when drenched in ice cream, it somehow worked with the flavor of the vanilla soft serve, and even though the richness of the chocolate swallowed up the taste of the bacon, it still made a fun chocolatey crunch. The bacon and the caramel didn’t meld, but I was still able to enjoy their individual flavors.
Since I ate the whole thing, you may be wondering, would I buy it again? Well, the simple answer is…probably not. While I found much of the Bacon Sundae shockingly inoffensive, there’s something about having bacon in my ice cream that just doesn’t sit well with me. Call it mouth instinct – while I was able to judge the bacon and its interaction with the sundae’s various components objectively, overall, I just didn’t feel right eating it. Plus, that bacon garnish just creeps me out.
I believe Burger King’s motto is still “Have It Your Way”. If that’s really true, I just might roll up to the tinny speaker of BK’s drive-thru and order a Bacon Sundae with the bacon on the side, minus the crumbles, plus a few extra bacon strips. It’s a solid sundae, and I can’t get over how great the quality of the bacon is. I would love to enjoy them…separately.
Maybe I’ll get some weird looks at the window, but I don’t care. Don’t judge me, Burger King employee! You are compelled to make it MY WAY. Plus, it would be fun to watch the person struggle to figure out which buttons to push to make my order happen. Sweet, salty revenge.
There’s obviously more to Burger King’s Summer Menu than the Bacon Sundae, so keep a look out in the days to come, as I plan on reviewing some of the other highlights (well, we’ll see about that) on BK’s seasonal menu.
Burger King Summer Menu: Bacon Sundae