I have occasionally tried items with bacon in them, but things that make bacon the central, primary ingredient are not for me. My wife, however, loves bacon...but she does not necessarily love Jack in the Box. When they sent us gift cards on condition we try the thing - well, I made her get one.
And this exchange is what ensued...
Luke Y. Thompson: Tell everyone about how I cruelly made you try the bacon burger.
Julia Thompson: Because you made me. Because I'm his wife, and as his wife, I sometimes have to take a fall for the team. Oh my god, this looks like fake cheese! Ehhhh!
LYT: You eat that cheese when it's on McDonald's cheeseburgers. It's the same thing.
JT: But they disguise it, you know.
LYT: You love cheeseburgers.
JT: I do! But at least they disguise it. Sheesh! This is kind of ridiculous, but OK...here we go. First bite. [eating] Hmm.
LYT: Well, you're not making a sour face.
JT: Hmm. Eh - it's a burger.
LYT: The meat doesn't taste any different?
JT: I barely get a sense of bacon.
LYT: Well, keep at it - maybe you'll taste more.
LYT: Keep at it - maybe you'll taste more.
JT: Patty is a tasting-good patty, but it doesn't taste like 'bacon!' I was expecting - you know that dog in the bacon commercials?
JT: "HEY, bacon!" I was expecting "BACON."
LYT: Have you tasted the sauce yet?
JT: Yes, it's mayonnaise. It tastes like mayonnaise.
LYT: It doesn't taste like baconnaise? There's supposed to be a bacon sauce.
JT: Oh, well, that's duly noted.
LYT: Maybe I should try it; see if I can taste anything.
JT: Yeah, you're way more sensitive to bacon. You and bacon are like oil and vinegar. It doesn't work.
LYT: I know.
JT: I mean, I called it a cheeseburger with bacon, but it's not like, "Holy s***, there's a s***-ton of bacon and you might want to change that to darn, or holy darn, or whatever.
LYT: Holy 'darn'?
JT: I don't know. I shouldn't say 's***.' You could start with that South Park movie clip of "You can't say...'!" Whatever.
LYT: Can I say S-star-star-star? ("s***")
JT: OK. You want to try this?
LYT: Ugh. I'll taste it and see. [chewing] It's subtle, but it's there. There's a very mild smokey, salty aftertaste on the beef. I feel like once you've eaten the whole thing, you'll have a lot of burps that taste like bacon.
JT: [chuckles] What's with all this lettuce? Blech.
LYT: And since you burp a lot, you're going to get a lot of bacon.
JT: Would I order it again? Yeah, because it tastes better than that really s****y Superman burger.
LYT: Well, that was Carl's.
JT: Oh. Well, that burger was crap - that Superman burger! Oh my god, they never should do that again. Just saying. This, I can eat it. But would I say it's overflowing with bacon flavor? No. But is it a good burger? Yeah.
LYT: It's also a new kind of bun. Did you notice any difference?
JT: Yeah! It holds up. I actually really like this bun, because you get a lot of burgers where the bun just disintegrates, and it's all goopy and crappy, but this bun is holding up. I like it! No - I'm dead serious - I really like it!
JT: It's a good bun - they need to keep with it. I mean, it doesn't look like a cheap, processed bun. It looks like somebody actually made this.
LYT: Brioche, it is, supposedly.
LYT: It's supposedly brioche.
JT: All right - well, hurray for brioche! This is well holding up right. At this point, I'm almost to the end. It would be all mushy and slippery and everything would be falling out. Nope! This is a good bun. Can I just rave about that, Jack in the Box? This is a GOOD bun!
LYT: You can.
JT: It's a very good bun, and this burger is a very good burger. It's just not overwhelmingly bacony. If you were going to call it a bacon cheeseburger, OK - I get it. But if you're saying that this is going to be the most packed-ton-of-bacon-thing ever - no, sorry.
You know, the thing is, I'm not regretting eating this burger, because I hate death-on-the-bun burgers. I really do, even though I'm plus-sized, I don't eat burgers, really. My favorite burgers are the mini McDonald's cheeseburgers that you used to get in Happy Meals. I mean, seriously, to this day, I'll still be like, "Happy Meal!" But this is a pretty good burger.
LYT: I remember the last time we went to Jack in the Box, you got their regular cheeseburger, and they said they only come in kid's meals. How was that, by the way-their regular cheeseburger? Do you remember?
JT: Too saucy. Generally, if you're overly saucing stuff - except for ribs! - you are hiding the fact that the meat kind of sucks, you know. Except for ribs - God bless ribs! Saucing all over it.
I mean, I actually want to finish this burger. I'm not forcing myself to finish it. Whereas that really bad Superman burger - which Carl's Jr. should never, ever do again. I will say for this bacon, it doesn't taste like processed bacon that they nuked in a microwave. And I like that. A little thin? Yeah. A little too crispy sometimes? Yeah, but that comes with good bacon. That's not Jack in the Box's fault. But that also tells me that this bacon was not cooked by a microwave, which is nice!
JT: I like that. Good for them. You got any other questions for me?
LYT: No, I think that's it.
JT: I would give this burger 9 out of 10 Hello Kitties. I have to take off a Hello Kitty because of the fact that it's not an overwhelming bacon flavor. Sorry. But, you still get a sense of bacon, but I was imagining the Beggin' Strips dog. BACON!!! No. But you've got a good product. Please don't mess with it - please! Just leave it alone, walk away.