Hey, guess what? Spicy Chicken McNuggets are Chicken McNuggets that are… spicy. Shocking, right??
Well, I figured they might taste slightly different, or have some kind of different seasoning or something, but as far as I can tell they taste just like the regular version, but with heat.
That spice level isn’t exactly going to blow your face off, but it is there. I’d probably put it a notch or two above mild.
I got the Ghost Pepper dip on the side, and that stuff is actually quite tasty; it’s noticeably hotter than the McNuggets, and it’s creamy and delightfully zippy. The heat sneaks up on you. It doesn’t seem that hot at first, but by the time I was done, my mouth was nice and toasty. I’d buy a whole bottle of that stuff if I could.
KFC just came out with a sandwich called the Gravy Lovers Sandwich, and yes. Of course. Of course I’m going to try that sandwich. I’m sold just based on the name alone.
The Gravy Lovers Sandwich, as per the KFC website: “features our delicious hand breaded chicken filet, 1 slice of Monterey Jack cheese, creamy mayo and 1 crunchy indented hashbrown with an individual gravy.”
Here’s the problem with ordering anything from a big fast food chain: it’s a crapshoot. Sometimes you get food that’s nice and fresh, and sometimes you get food that’s… not. I very much got the latter.
It’s a decent enough sandwich in theory, I’ll give it that. How could it not be? Fried chicken + gravy is always going to be a good thing.
It comes with a surprisingly large container of gravy (which is standard KFC gravy — thick and generically salty, but tasty enough), and you’re supposed to take off the top bun and pour it onto the sandwich. I poured out about a quarter of it, and used the rest as a dip between bites.
The biggest problem here (aside from the fact that they forgot about the slice of cheese, and I guess decided to give me lettuce instead) is that both the chicken and the hashbrown had clearly been sitting in one of those warming trays for hours. Days? Weeks?? The meat had a texture that I will charitably describe as leathery, and the hashbrown (which you expect to be crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside) was crunchy and dry throughout.
The copious serving of gravy actually helped quite a bit in this regard, because the sandwich otherwise would have been inedibly dry. I finished it, and I don’t think that would have been the case if not for the added moisture from the gravy.
Also: the sandwich (on its own — no combo!) costs $11.50 before tax. Maybe I just don’t eat enough fast food these days, but I’ll admit that this gave me sticker shock. For around the same price, you can go to a local joint like Chica’s or PG Clucks and get a sandwich that’s roughly a trillion times better.
Hot Dip is a new sandwich shop on Queen Street that specializes in meaty sandwiches you can dip into things, and yeah, gimme that. That’s a genius idea.
They actually only have four sandwiches on the menu (at the moment, at least), which I appreciate. I always freeze like a deer in headlights when I see a menu with dozens of things on it — I know that everything on this huge menu cannot possibly be great, so just tell me what the good stuff is and what I can ignore.
Focusing on only a few things solves this problem entirely.
I ordered the Hot Dip (because you should always get the menu item that shares a name with the restaurant) which is a roast beef sandwich with horseradish mayo topped with crispy onions and served on a pretzel roll. The dip, in this case, is sharp cheddar.
It’s a very good sandwich. The thinly-sliced roast beef is super tender with a nice beefy flavour, and there’s a generous amount of it — the menu says eight ounces (i.e. half a pound, i.e. a lot of beef), and based on how substantial the sandwich is, I have no reason to believe they’re skimping on the meat.
The pretzel roll is just as good as the beef. Sometimes pretzel bread can be a bit on the dense side, but this struck a great balance between softness and heft, with a lightly crispy exterior.
As for the dip, weirdly enough it’s the weakest part of the sandwich. Despite being called “sharp cheddar” it has a thoroughly mild flavour — it basically has the taste and texture of watered-down Cheez Whiz. It mostly just adds moisture to the sandwich, but between the fresh bread and the tender meat, it doesn’t particularly need it.
My other big issue: it’s an incredibly heavy sandwich, and it really needs something acidic to cut through the overwhelming richness. I guess the horseradish mayo is supposed to fill this role? But it’s completely overwhelmed by all the beef; you can barely even tell that it’s there. It’s certainly not a deal-killer (it’s still very tasty), but it makes the sandwich feel a bit one-note rich, which is a shame.