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Exeunt, TenderCrisp. Hello, “Crispy Chicken Sandwich” at Burger King

Shocking developments in “lateral movements in fast food” news.

“Fried chicken” is slowly overtaking “bacon” as the guilty pleasure comfort food of choice here in America, with fancy restaurants and grubby fast food chains both rolling out new menu items to cash in on the trend. And while some chains are injecting the American classic with creative twists (or at the very least, headline-grabbing gimmicks), Burger King is going another way: They’re going back to basics, seeking to achieve perfection with every ingredient.

The new “Crispy Chicken Sandwich,” which replaces the nearly universally loathed “Chicken TenderCrisp” sandwich, is slightly smaller, with a new marinade and cooking process that makes it crispier and juicier. The 100% white meat seasoned chicken breast is topped with lettuce, tomato and mayo and served on a potato bun, which Burger King hopes will propel “the classic fried chicken sandwich to a new, improved, possibly even iconic level.” Via BusinessWire:

“We’ve watched the chicken sandwich category grow exponentially and that inspired us to create a chicken sandwich that hits the mark on every level,” said Alex Macedo, President, North America, for the BURGER KING® brand. “With great flavor, crispiness and juiciness we hope to give guests a new reason to enjoy their BURGER KING® experience.”

Will the company’s “back to basics” approach be enough to propel Burger King’s “Crispy Chicken Sandwich” into the fast food hall of fame (conveniently located next to a check-cashing store), or are we so accustomed to our new fast food offerings being twice-duckfat-fried, stuffed with jalapeño bacon cheddar sauce, doused in buffalo wing sauce, and served on a pizza chalupa shell that no one will even notice?

We’re all for a return to the classics, provided they’re well-executed. It’s up to Burger King to prove they can back up their newfound restraint with some quality ingredients. If you’ve tried one of the new Crispy Chicken Sandwiches, let us know in the comments.

Photo: Burger King

Written by Malcolm Bedell

Malcolm is the author of “Eating in Maine: At Home, On the Town, and On the Road,” as well as a frequent contributor to Serious Eats, Down East Magazine, The L.A. Weekly, The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and more. When not poisoning his body with garbage and then posting sardonic commentary about it on the Internet, he also owns and operates the ‘Wich, Please food truck, named Eater.com’s “Hottest Restaurant in Maine” for 2015.

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