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The Eat Beat Dining around South Florida
with Mike Mayo

McDonald's rolls out 'international' items in South Florida

The marketing folks at McDonald’s are at it again. In the never-ending quest to test new menu items, the fast-food giant on Wednesday launches a “Flavors From Abroad” promotion at 50 McDonald’s restaurants across South Florida. According to a press release, “this limited time test celebrates … global scale and authentic flavors from around the world.”

Or maybe it is just a novel way to dress up the same old burgers and fries.

If I sound a bit jaded, it is because I am. I actually enjoyed a new McDonald’s signature burger earlier this year, a garlic white cheddar burger made from fresh (not frozen) beef, part of the chain’s revamped Quarter Pounder lineup. But I was disappointed to find that burger yanked from the menu about six weeks later (it wasn’t billed as a test item). I suppose the garlic white cheddar burger did not sell, not the first time the masses rejected something a critic liked.

Now comes a new batch of food material. The international menu items that debut today include:

The Grand McExtreme bacon burger from Spain, a fresh beef quarter-pound burger topped with McBacon sauce, Applewood smoked bacon, Gouda cheese and slivered onions on a sesame seed bun. Available as a single or a double quarter-pound patty. My McSnarky McTake: Spain? Gouda? I’m confused. If this is a Spanish-influenced item, shouldn’t the cheese be manchego?

• BBQ McShaker fries from Malaysia, featuring McDonald’s famous fries served with a smoky barbecue seasoning. McSnarky McTake: I’ve never been to Malaysia, but I have eaten at Malaysian restaurants, where favored ingredients include coconut milk, shrimp paste, curry and sambal (chili paste). These sound like Cajun fries from Popeye’s.

• McSpicy Chicken from Hong Kong, a crispy chicken fillet marinated with spicy seasoning, topped with creamy mayo and lettuce. McSnarky McTake: I also have never been to Hong Kong, but I imagine this is similar to the spicy chicken sandwich found at Wendy’s in Hong Kong — or perhaps anywhere.

• Stroopwafel McFlurry from the Netherlands, vanilla soft-serve ice cream mixed with caramel-waffle-cookie pieces and delicious caramel sauce. McSnarky McTake: I suppose this could be worse. It could have Gouda. Or manchego.

mmayo@southflorida.com, 954-356-4508. Follow my food adventures on Instagram: @mikemayoeats. Sign up for my weekly dining newsletter at SouthFlorida.com/EatBeatMail.

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