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Thanks to Arby's, We, too, Got the Meats


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We got the meats.

And they were liberally stacked on a star-cut bun to make up 15 Bourbon Bacon & Brisket sandwiches from Arby’s.

To be totally candid—there’s no camera around, right?— I didn’t expect to like the sandwich. I haven't been to Arby’s since the time I exited its drive-thru with four sandwiches and no barbecue sauce. Try explaining to three surly kids why their sandwiches are dry, and, “No, I am not leaving the interstate at the next exit to go back for it. No, not even for horsey sauce.” Actually, I did go back after the kids were grown to try the market sandwiches a few times.

When Mackenzie Ryals from Arby’s PR firm offered to send over the newly launched sandwiches to our office, because “We know finding the time to come in the restaurant to try new sandwiches can be difficult,” I didn’t play hard to feed; I agreed wholeheartedly. I know, I know, reporters are not suppose to take free things from companies they cover, but if I can be bought for a sandwich, I really should quit my day job and start working at an Arby’s, where I could get free, or at least reduced cost, sandwiches every shift.

When the sandwiches arrived at the appointed time, I went out to greet the delivery guy. “Hi, I’m Nancy, you must be the franchisee,” I said.

“No, I’m from the delivery company they hired,” he said.

Rather than be embarrassed that I assumed anyone older than a teenager must be the franchisee, I felt relieved. You don’ have to tip delivery services. Bonus.

Greg DeMarco, our sales rep for sister pub Foodservice News, and I were the first on the scene. Greg had already figured out if you microwave the sandwich for no more than 20 seconds it returned to its original handed-over-the-counter melty goodness.

So here’s what’s on the sandwich: Brown sugar bacon, bourbon Dijon, crispy onion strings, 13-hour smoked brisket, smoked cheddar cheese. What's not to love? Fortunately, for me at least, Mackenzie didn’t get all healthy on me and send over the turkey version. I’m a strong believer that turkeys should give up their seat at the table until Thanksgiving.

“So how many calories do you think?” I asked Greg, whom I assumed knew how to count calories since he and his wife have been to Weight Watchers.

“1,500,” he answered. “Hey, I’ll look it up.” He pulled out his smart phone. Looking somewhat sheepish, he said, “It’s 710.”

Funny how when you’re expecting something to be 1,500 calories and it’s half that, all of a sudden 710 doesn’t sound like much. I started wondering if I shouldn’t have a second one.

I admit it was a good sandwich. And, I’d stop by Arby’s and buy one, if it wasn’t for the fact that it’s hard for reporters to find the time to come into a restaurant to try new offerings. I’m just glad Mackenzie understands how hard being me really is.

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The latest news, opinions and commentary on what's happening in the franchise arena that could affect your business.

Tom KaiserTom Kaiser is associate editor of Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3209, or send story ideas to tkaiser@franchisetimes.com.
 
Beth EwenBeth Ewen is editor-in-chief of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3212, or send story ideas to bewen@franchisetimes.com.
 
Nicholas UptonNicholas Upton is staff writer at Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3226, or send story ideas to nupton@franchisetimes.com.
 
Mary Jo LarsonLaura Michaels is managing editor of Franchise Times. She can be reached at 612.767.3210, or send story ideas to lmichaels@franchisetimes.com.
 
Mary Jo LarsonMary Jo Larson is the publisher of Franchise Times Magazine and the Restaurant Finance Monitor.  You can find her on Twitter at
 twitter.com/mlarson1011.
 
Nancy WeingartnerNancy Weingartner is editor-at-large of Franchise Times magazine and the editor of the Food On Demand media project. You can reach her at 612-767-3200 or at nancyw@franchisetimes.com.
Follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/nanweingartner.
 

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