<<UPDATE, 4/2/09: For anyone wondering about our choices (or our enthusiasm), please bear in mind that this was posted on April 1st. Hope you enjoyed the day!>>
Our hit list of the most delightful food items from America’s quick service restaurants…
Cheesy Tater Tots from Sonic
Sure, it may be more convenient to grab a bucket o’ tots down the street at Sticky Rice, but the creme de la creme remain cheesy tots from Sonic. Oh, Sonic. You must be America’s drive-in because it takes a freaking road trip for most of America to reach one. According to their site, the nearest Sonic to Capitol Hill is in Fredicksburg, VA a mere 52 miles away. Sure it’s a hike, but hike we will for a chance at those crispy potato nuggets topped with only the finest fake cheese money can buy. Have you ever heard the rumor that the chemical make up of certain processed cheeses are only one molecule away from plastic? I’m pretty sure the good folks at the Sonic HQ have put at least half of that missing molecule back into their cheese because it tastes that damn good.
Red Beans and Rice from Popeye’s
For delicious dining a little closer to home, we often head to Popeye’s for a bowl of red beans and rice. Dip your spork into this styrofoam container of pure heaven and we dare you to disagree that this is one of the finest comfort food dishes a few quarters can buy. Sure, some naysayers may laud the layers of flavors in KFC’s famous bowl (I know Patton Oswalt is particularly fond of them) but we can’t get enough of the authentic flavors of Louisiana.
Chicken Nuggets from Wendy’s
Picture it: It’s one in the morning on a night of binge drinking enjoying a few adult beverages. You worked up an appetite. At this stage, there are only a few food items that will do. This is not the time for salads or sushi. No. This is a craving that can only be satisfied by a double order of Wendy’s chicken nuggets*. What is it about these nuggets and the magical chemical elixir mixed into the breading? They somehow satisfy the stomach and make it crave more. They may also inspire theft if, for example, a certain DD spouse is parking the car and isn’t around to notice that all of his nuggets are being devoured.
- Wendy’s spicy chicken sandwich may also be substituted.
Seven Layer Burrito from Taco Bell
Refried beans. Sour cream. Guacamole. Lettuce. Tomatoes. Cheese. Add in rice instead of black olives, and you’ve got Taco Bell’s meatless work of genius. It’s a creative reinvention on par with some of Jose Andres and Michel Richard’s best works! By taking that classic Super Bowl party special – the seven layer dip – and encasing it in a gigantic flour tortilla, Taco Bell manages to fool your senses (“Ooh…a burrito!”) and your vegetarian sensibilities (“There’s no meat in here…it’s practically health food!”) all at once. You may be tempted to unroll their creation and distribute the various layers evenly, but do so at your peril. Not only will you upset the delicate composition that provides a bite of pure beans followed by a lettuce-only bite, they’re also a bitch to re-assemble without tearing the tortilla and having the whole thing fall apart.
Waffle Breakfast Sandwich from Dunkin’ Donuts
When it comes to mixing savory and sweet in the morning, lots of people assumed that McDonald’s had successfully cornered the market with their McGriddles. Syrup-infused pancakes surrounding sausage, egg and cheese are enough to make almost any mouth water in the morning; a challenger would have to bring something truly special to the table. Enter Dunkin’ Donuts and their Waffle Breakfast Sandwich. Not only did they up the ante with cherrywood smoked bacon, they introduced a delivery system that had previously only been attempted by stoners and Homer Simpson: waffles. Only time will tell if this trial run will result in a permanent addition to the Dunkin’ Donuts breakfast menu, but we’re certainly hoping it does. A recent breakfast resulted in an additional wrinkle: the oh-so-attentive sandwich artisan who put mine together ignored the textural clues and gave me an inside-out waffle sandwich…or maybe it’s just a Waffail?