November 30, 2012

My Fast Food Restaurant Rankings

This was not easy to do. I lost a lot of sleep over it. Okay, I didn't actually loose any sleep (I take fast food seriously, but not that seriously...) but I did put a lot of thought into it. Here's my rankings of fast food restaurants:

  1. In-N-Out Burger
  2. Original Tommy’s
  3. Jack in the Box
  4. Carl’s Jr.
  5. Taco Bell
  6. McDonald’s
  7. Arby’s
  8. Popeyes
  9. Sonic Drive-In
  10. Wendy’s
  11. Wienerschnitzel
  12. Del Taco
  13. El Pollo Loco
  14. Dairy Queen
  15. Chick-Fil-A
  16. KFC
  17. Burger King

There's a lot of fast food restaurants not included in the rankings only because they are not in my area and I can't eat there frequently enough to form an opinion.

UPDATE 12/4/12 - These are places which typically have a drive-through. This is what I consider "fast food." If I have to get out of my car to order, I don't think of it as fast food. This is why I didn't include places like Chipotle, Five Guys, Subway, etc. in the list.

Posted by Jim | Comments (9)

November 29, 2012

Nutffles Red Velvet Truffles

nutfflesrv.jpgI had never seen Nutffles before when I spotted a display of them at Raley’s. I don’t know if they are a new product or have been around forever. Anyway, I bought a package of the Red Velvet Truffles. Inside were four truffles made of an almond surrounded by red velvet filling, a crispy cocoa wafer, and cream cheese-flavored Belgian white chocolate. Wow, were they delicious! The different flavors and textures went well together and it was clear that the truffles were made from high-quality ingredients. They are a premium product, much like Ferrero Rocher chocolates are. But, I think Nutffles taste better. The package of four truffles cost me $1.50, which I thought was kind of high when I bought them. After eating them, I can say that they are a very good value at a buck and a half. The Nutffles web site indicates that Nutffles are available in a 20-piece ballotin (Now there’s a word I've never come across. It means “a deep decorative rectangular cardboard box with overhanging edges used for packaging chocolate candies”). A ballotin or two of Nutffles would make a great gift for someone special.

Phoood rating: Outstanding!

Posted by Jim | Comments (0)

November 16, 2012

Taco Bell XXL Steak Nachos

TBXXLnachos.jpgTaco Bell is bringing out the “XXL” label again, this time with the XXL Steak Nachos. Taco Bell’s nacho offerings have always been on the small side, more of a snack than a meal. With the XXL Steak Nachos, you probably won’t have to order anything else to get a full belly. The container that the nachos are served in is impressive. It’s about a foot long and around seven inches wide. Inside, you’ll find tortilla chips covered with refried beans, cheese, nacho cheese sauce, steak, reduced-fat sour cream, guacamole, and pico de gallo. The flavors were what I’ve come to expect from Taco Bell; there’s nothing new here. The nachos contained a fairly generous amount of steak, which was juicy and had a good flavor. The weak link here is the reduced-fat sour cream. It tastes like, well, reduced-fat sour cream. I don’t think anyone who is eating the XXL Steak Nachos is really watching their caloric intake very closely, so Taco Bell should just use regular (high fat) sour cream and make the XXL Nachos taste better. At $5.99, I think the XXL Steak Nachos are at least a dollar overpriced, even considering the portion size. You’ll have to decide if a big pile of nachos is worth this price.

Phoood rating: Good.gif

Posted by Jim | Comments (0)

November 10, 2012

Wendy's Mozzarella Chicken Supreme

rsz_wendys-new-logo.jpgFirst of all, you may have noticed the lack of a picture containing the food item I'm about to review. I tried searching everywhere for a picture of the Mozzarella Chicken Supreme, but to no avail. So I figured now was as good a time as any to display Wendy's upcoming logo change—something that hasn't been altered in over 29 years. Now on to the review... I walked into Wendy's the other day expecting to order an Asiago Ranch Chicken Club until I noticed signage for the "new" Mozzarella Chicken Supreme. I believe this was actually on the menu in the past, as this website seems to indicate. I placed my order for one and received it shortly in a neat little package. At first glance I was disappointed by how small it was for its $7 price tag. My first bite revealed a nice and chewy bun, fresh veggies, and a ranch sauce that had pepper sprinkled into it. A little strange, but it helped to liven things up. The Homestyle chicken fillet was as impressive as ever, with a crispy, perfectly seasoned exterior and high quality white meat inside. The mozzarella cheese came across as the real deal, with its elastic consistency and milky flavor. It had melted and draped over the chicken very nicely. Although I wish the portion could've been a bit larger, Wendy's proves once again that they have the best chicken sandwiches to be found anywhere in terms of quality and taste.

Phoood rating: Good.gif

Posted by Jin | Comments (3)

November 3, 2012

Heinz Dip & Squeeze Ketchup

heinzdipandsqueeze.jpgPhoood doesn't review condiments very often, but sometimes the product is so good that our readers just need to know about it. I read about Heinz Dip & Squeeze ketchup packages a while ago and thought it was a great idea. But, I hadn't actually seen one until a recent visit to Chik-fil-A. The ketchup itself isn't what’s important here, it’s the ingenious package that lets you either squeeze the ketchup out like you do with a ketchup squeeze packet or peel back the plastic film to turn it into a tub for dipping. So, no matter how you like to get ketchup on your food, you should be covered. I used the Dip & Squeeze package both ways while eating the chicken strips and waffle fries I had bought. Both the dip and squeeze functions worked like I expected. The package holds more ketchup than a typical squeeze package, but not as much as the tubs that fast food dipping sauces typically come in. If you are dipping, you may need a few packages to get the job done. I think Heinz has a real winner here and I hope to see Dip & Squeeze packages in all fast food restaurants soon.

Phoood rating: Outstanding!

Posted by Jim | Comments (2)