Sunday, 16 June 2013

Pierre Drive Thru Bacon Cheeseburger

Science never sleeps. While we're slumbering and snoring innocently at night, in laboratories across the country things are burbling away in test tubes, growing in Petri dishes, being extruded, extracted, expanded, dehydrated, billions of molecular patterns and shifts being measured and documented by computers, all for the betterment of this world and more importantly, to bring us a frozen bacon cheeseburger that can be microwaved in seventy-five seconds. Of course there are some other innovative offshoots to scientific experimentation such as brontosaurus' with human heads or G.I. Joe clowns, something the military has long been working on (see above image), but a bacon cheeseburger that is pretty much ready in less time than it takes you to put on your underpants is truly a marvel of modern science. I reviewed a Pierre Drive Thru spicy chicken sandwich previously and was not appalled by the results so I was really looking forward to this other permutation in their product line because I love bacon cheeseburgers but if I have to wait longer than two minutes for one I go insane. Again it's packaged in an attractive drive thru burger box that faithfully reproduces what you'd find at your average fast food chain, cultivating the experience and giving you the sense that you just drove somewhere to buy this thing from an unusually perky late-night window employee at three in the morning when, really, you haven't left your easy chair except to shuffle to the microwave. Even astronauts don't have it this easy when it comes to feeding time and they're in zero gravity. As with many frozen foods, especially those that are visibly built from many layered parts, a kind of frozen Frankenstein if you will, it's rarely love at first sight when you view them through their transparent wrapping. But you can't judge a book by its cover nor a bacon cheeseburger by it frozen state and to say the transformation in the microwave is complete doesn't do due justice to the magic and mystery of radioactive heat. The sesame seed bun mimics a McDonald's one almost to perfection, both in texture, flavour and that moist, cushion-like quality that reminds me of things I find growing under logs or scuttling beneath rocks. The meat of the matter, the burger, had the proper sodium tingle and after-burn, its personality subdued and yet somehow pleasing in its vapid generality. Much like cafeteria food, which can have a certain allure, especially if you've starved yourself for half a day. Again, melted American cheese, like in other frozen foods I've sampled, tried to rear its formidable plasticized head but proved no match for the microwave, turning to a synthetic dairy ooze, primordial almost in its consistency, as if returning to the laboratory where it was once born and bred. Still, it looked pretty good dripping off the burger and was a good counterpoint to the smoky sodium nitrate  sting of the bacon. I was very concerned about how the bacon would turn out with this type of product, more so in texture than in taste because as long as some pork remnant resides in the strip of meat, the bacon flavour is a given to a certain degree. But how would its warp and woof hold up to radioactivity? Well, there was a whisper of bacon flavour as I well suspected but the bacon had a bit of an elasticized nature, pulling back when you tried to bite through it. It was a bit of a tug of war but I don't mind a food that fights back as long as it's dead first. Overall, this bacon cheeseburger met all of the criteria for drive thru glory, not aspiring to be more than the sum of its parts, whatever those parts might be, even the ones with scientific unpronounceable names, but still making you believe it's more than what it seems. 

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