Friday, September 4, 2009

TBG Eats: Taco Bell's NEW ½ Pound Nacho Crunch Burrito

Current Weight: 167.2 lbs.

Since the revelation that my sinuses are
closed for renovation, I've been fielding variations of the same joke for a few weeks: How can we trust your previous fast food reviews? It's a fair question. And, one I intend to answer truthfully in as much space as this lightly-read blog will allow.

Quite simply…you'll just have to trust me.

What, you want more? Fine. Back in July, I sampled TB's
Bacon Cheesy Potato Burrito – but, thanks to my sinuses, I couldn't taste it. A couple of days later, I went back and ordered it again. All of my taste and smell systems were go, so I wrote my review based on the encore performance. Same thing happened with the Burger King snack chips, as (over the course of a few days) I kept grabbing random handfuls from the bags until my taste buds detected something.

Of course, this problem also works in reverse. A few weeks back, I really enjoyed Subway's new
Orchard Salad Chicken Sandwich. I've had it twice more since and couldn't taste it either time. So, as you can see guys, I deserve your pity…not your squinty-eyed insinuations.

Our friends at Taco Bell are hitting the home stretch of 2009 as the runaway winner for best new menu items of the year. TB
started off slowly, but finished with several consistently delicious – occasionally spectacular – meals that made me one happy That Bootleg Guy.

As we head into the start of another NFL season, TB is positioning their line of half-pound burritos as part of an ad campaign that'll surely take root during the first few Sundays n' Mondays of pro football's 300 tedious TV timeouts/commercial breaks per game.

Pulling into my local TB drive-thru, I had a choice between three burritos: the Combo Burrito, the (supposedly) new Cheesy Potato Burrito and the Nacho Crunch Burrito. I'm pretty sure I've had the Combo before and the Cheesy Potato is most certainly NOT "new". I had it with bacon about two months ago. (By the way, TB now offers crumbled bacon on top of any menu item for 25 cents extra. I feel you should know these things.)

The Nacho Crunch Burrito ($1.99) is stuffed with double the seasoned ground beef, nacho cheese sauce, tomatoes, reduced-fat sour cream and red tortilla strips. Before I dug in, I ensured my sinuses were as clear as they could be by blowing until the veins in my forehead looked
like this.

I dunno. This was missing…something. It even looked limp and deflated, as if there was room for one or two more ingredients within. The cheese and the beef were fine together, but the abundance of tomatoes just kind of sat there seemingly longing for some lettuce and refried beans to keep them company. The little red tortilla strips have always been akin to tiny toasted corn daggers, stabbing the inside of mouth from every conceivable angle.

Call it average, edible and just barely acceptable; the Nacho Crunch Burrito can't undo TB's '09 awesome. But, it certainly won't be invited to the year-end awards show.

Grade: 2.5 (out of 5) Calories: 520, Fat: 25g

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