MERIDEN — With the release of Wendy’s new breakfast menu this week, we decided to have reporter Lauren Sellew see if the food stood up to the hype.
Wendy’s is brand new to the fast-food breakfast scene, so we were curious if they would be able to get it right. Since other fast food establishments have had years to perfect their breakfast offerings, we wanted to put their new menu up against a breakfast classic: the McDonald’s McMuffin (the bacon, egg and cheese one to be exact).
Almost a dozen new items joined the menu board just this week, on March 2, but we stuck to three of the most interesting sounding-sandwiches for this round of taste-testing.
Some of the sandwiches come with an option of sausage or bacon, but for this, Sellew went full bacon to stay consistent.
Wendy’s describes the new menu items as a “selection of fresh, craveable, bold new morning options” which they claim will outshine your current “tired, old, stale breakfast.”
The company claims people deserve a better quality breakfast than they’re currently getting, which is a tall order when you consider how many options are out there (Dunkin, Chick-fil-a, Taco Bell, Burger King to name a few...)
The key may be their promise of “hand-cracking fresh eggs” for all the breakfast sandwiches, which would be a refreshing twist to the folded fluffy eggs most chains have.
The new menu includes the Breakfast Baconator, Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit, Maple Bacon Chicken Croissant, Sausage or Bacon Egg and Swiss Croissant, Sausage or Bacon Egg and Cheese Biscuit, and a Classic Sausage or Bacon Egg and Cheese Sandwich.
The menu also features a new Frosty-ccino, a cold-brewed coffee mixed with a vanilla or chocolate Frosty over ice, as well as a choice of seasoned potatoes, oatmeal bar, sausage biscuit and egg and cheese burrito.
$3.79 (sandwich only, before tax)
As a control, Sellew tasted the Bacon, Egg and Cheese McGriddle, which is two griddle cakes— similar to pancakes— with a folded egg, American cheese, and Applewood smoked bacon.
She rated this breakfast sandwich average: good, but not amazing.
WENDY’S BREAKFAST BACONATOR
$4.39 (sandwich only, before tax)
The Breakfast Baconator is described as a grilled sausage with American cheese, Applewood smoked bacon, and a fresh-cracked grade A egg, with another layer of cheese, bacon and swiss cheese sauce. The one we received was not nearly as layered looking as the online photos show.
Much like Wendy’s regular hamburger, Sellew said the sausage was very seasoned and pretty much the main source of flavor. Although it was pretty good, she said it really didn’t feel like breakfast.
“If it’s probably later in the morning and you’re getting closer to lunch, you might want to go for the baconator breakfast sandwich,” Sellew said.
WENDY’S MAPLE BACON CHICKEN CROISSANT
$6.49 (in a combo, with a drink and side)
This sandwich includes a fried chicken breast, Applewood smoked bacon, and maple butter on a croissant bun.
Sellew liked this sandwich, but said the chicken was the most overpowering taste, instead of the bacon or maple as one might expect. The McGriddle’s bun, she said, had a much stronger maple taste.
“I just was surprised that the Maple Bacon Chicken didn’t have a stronger maple flavor, but it was still good. It didn’t detract anything, that it wasn’t overwhelmingly maple,” Sellew said.
She liked the crispy bun, which connected on one side, making it easier to keep the sandwich contents from spilling out.
WENDY’S CLASSIC BACON, EGG AND CHEESE
$3.69 (sandwich only, before tax)
This “classic” breakfast sandwich is a “breakfast roll” with a fresh-cracked grade A egg, Applewood smoked bacon and melted American cheese.
Wendy’s describes it as “a tried and true reason to rise.”
This sandwich was Sellew’s favorite of the group, because of its simple and classic taste.
“In the morning I’m not really looking for crazy flavors,” she said. “… Or a hamburger.”
WENDY’S SEASONED POTATOES SIDE
$0.30 (in a combo with sandwich and drink, $6.49 total)
The seasoned potatoes are nothing like hashbrowns, and they don’t claim to be. Wendy’s describes the new side as “natural-cut, skin-on potatoes cooked to perfection and seasoned with cracked pepper and garlic powder.”
Sellew said they were tasty, but didn’t feel like a breakfast food.
Sellew said all of the sandwiches were pretty good, but she preferred Wendy’s Classic Bacon, Egg and Cheese Sandwich and its the one she finished off for her own breakfast. She chose this one because it felt the most like a classic breakfast sandwich, nice and simple with good flavor, which is exactly what she’s looking for in a bacon, egg, and cheese in the morning.
Overall, she says Wendy’s breakfast menu is worth a try.
“If you want to mix up your morning routine if you get fast food breakfasts and you get tired of going to the same place every day, give Wendy’s a go,” Sellew suggested.
The breakfast menu is available at most locations from 6:30 to 10:30 a.m. Delivery through Wendy’s is available beginning at 8 a.m.