At this point, nobody's surprised. It's an uncomplicated idea in the year of 2013 d.t. (doritus tacous): every month, or bi-weekly in some quick food places, a fast food restaurant will release an arm-bracingly intense challenge food, an Inceptiony food inside a food, or a Frankenstenian other food jacked into a new food.
It's Occam's razor, really: will a fast food organization actually release that food monstrosity you made a joke about with your friends months ago? The answer comes back clear as day-old mayonnaise on paper: oh, totally. Five years ago, a Doritos chip flavored like Taco Bell would have sounded like an Onion story. So, here we stand in 2013, a time you might call Double-Down Day Plus 1095 (Has it really been three years since KFC's fried chicken-bunned Double Down?).
Last year had some deep fried winners. 2013 was special, though. It was the year we extrapolated on the night-black burger bun, put Sriracha on everything that moved, and physically dropped tacos from helicopters. Among the trends, these were the fast food anomalies that were the most egregious.
See also: The Worst Fast Food Trends of 2012
Ramen as a Bun When the ramen-bunned burger launched in Los Angeles, there was a four-hour line. Four hours. That's 45 minutes longer than the director's cut of Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring, two hours longer than hitting yourself with a hammer for two hours, and 3 hours and 50 minutes longer than sautéing your own brain until it's tender and not stupid.
Doritos Locos Shock Infinite After the staggering success of Doritos Locos Tacos, Doritos decided to Everything. Doritos is everywhere now. "Crust it with Doritos," Congress said to the latest bill. My shower is grouted with Doritos. Earlier this week in Klyde Warren Park, Doritos was seen walking a person like a dog. Huffington Post reported Doritos had given birth to Doritostuplets. Seriously though, there are Doritos Flavored Doritos Locos Tacos now, with more to come.
Let's Put Everything We Can Find Lying Around in the Crust We're still doing this. In the crust this year, you'll find cheeseburgers, hot dogs threaded through like tent poles, every cheese ever, and cheese hot tubs.
Doughnuts as Buns Are you eating a bun? A bun is a waste. It's just a bun. It's just what it is. What if your food was like Pandora's box? You unwrap it, and a whole mess of shit pours out and makes you scream like you've seen Pinhead. 2013 was the year we concreted the trendy question: what if I replaced it with a doughnut? ** *Note: this question can be asked about nearly anything *Doughnut can also be swapped for Cronut or Waffle
Burger King Japan's Black Ninja Burger with Bacon Slap This sandwich has three I Don't Knows: 1) I don't know why it needs a black bun, 2) I don't know why the grilled bacon flaps over the burger so ridiculously, 3) I don't know what the "Black Ninja" thing means.
Happy Hour Slushies at Taco Bell Listen, there are happy hour sodas now. Not that awesome-tasting Dr Pepper you indulge in on the three-hour road trip to Austin. These sodas are Slimer green meets Muppet purple colored ice-slush sugar bombs sold at Taco Bell. Two things that are super annoying about these: they're named things like "Mountain Dew Distortion" and "Mountain Dew Typhoon", and they're sold bigger and cheaper during "Happier Hour" (2-5 p.m.). Also, a regular size Mountain Dew Distortion Freeze has 58 g of sugar.
Menu Items Named Big Tex or Texas Big Morning, cities that aren't in Texas! So, everyone outside of Texas may be thrilled you're putting two big slices of stale toast on a burger and calling it Big Texas Something, or smothering a hot dog in chili and cheese and calling Texas Big Dog, but no one--seriously no one--here in Texas is impressed or thinks "Oh wow, yeah, that's JUST like it is in Dallas."
KFC Did, Yes They Did, Put Cheese on a Donut KFC in Asia put a nice round of stupid Swiss and cheddar cheese on a doughnut. It comes with a hazelnut coffee and four, use-immediately enemas.
Satisfries: Burger King's Fry Experiments That wasn't a pun: Burger King actually named their new, crinkle-cut 40% less fat fries (apparently all the fat stays when you don't crinkle) Satisfries. Let's set aside for a moment that the reviews for these new fries were pretty terrible, and give The King our angry eyes for constantly making their already not great fries worse. And their weird-ass fry experiments (hey, let's turn chicken tubes into fries!)
KFC's New Go Cups You can just put chicken in your cup holder now. You don't need to carry it, or sit anywhere and eat without moving. It's called a Go Cup. It's pretty brilliant, I guess. We actually propose that KFC partner with an American car manufacturer to invent an edible, Fried Chicken Car. You can drive and eat it, off the KFC lot, for as long as one tank of honey mustard will last. It could create thousands of jobs? Probably.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.