03 March, 2011

Dunkin Donuts Big n Toasty

Photo by Dunkin' Donuts
Even though Dunkin' Donuts shops are all over the place (there are four of them in my hometown alone, for example) it might be a little hard for you to find their new Big N' Toasty breakfast sandwich. When I walked into the Dunkies around the corner from my house this morning at 7:00 to order one, the pleasant young lady behind the counter said, "You're just in time - we're just about sold out, and our delivery hasn't gotten here yet."  Apparently, Big N' Toasties are hugely popular, with many DD locations running out of them long before the morning rush is over. Looking at DD's promotional photo, it's easy to see why the sandwich is making such a splash - the A La Carte blog at CTnow.com remarked that with it's big golden slices of Texas Toast and stylized arrangement of bacon and cheese, the Big N' Toasty looked more like an offering from the Sonic menu than something available at Dunkies (home of the flavorless and remarkably unsatisfying egg-white flatbread sandwiches.)

That the actual sandwich doesn't quite live up to the gorgeously styled publicity shots isn't a big surprise - the meme of "fast food not looking like the ads" has been done to death and it's not even blogworthy anymore - but for all the petty differences, this is actually a fairly hearty but not at all overwhelming breakfast. Two small eggs over hard, four short strips of decent bacon, a slice of standard-issue Fast Food Orange Cheese and, of course, two thick slices of Texas Toast. If I were to have a quibble at all, it would be about the size of the "four strips" of bacon, which are really more like two strips cut in half.

Seriously, the promos and the media hype around the Big N' Toasty made me anticipate a sandwich so big that I thought I might be better off sharing it with someone. But the actual sandwich isn't anywhere near the massive OMG BREAKFAST FEAST I was led to expect. Rather, it was much more an appropriately-sized brekkie which is approximately the same size as one I'd be likely to eat on a weekend morning (egg, toast, couple strips of bacon.)  The difference here is that the toast is somewhat thicker and the eggs somewhat smaller than what I'd make at home.

No, really, the eggs are small. Look how thin they are, stacked on one another in this cross section.  Even the yolks are thin.  You know what?  With their perfectly-circlular eggs featuring perfectly-centered yolks and perfectly uniform thickness, it would not surprise me one bit if Dunkie's isn't using real cracked-from-the-shell eggs at all, but a factory-extruded egg product, pre-cooked in cylinders and then cut into uniform slices for reheating at point of sale. No shit, that is an actual food service item.  Why has no one else noticed this?? And as long as I'm asking rhetorical questions:  How is Dunkin' Donuts managing to fit 580 calories into this sandwich?

So, bottom line:  Weird eggs notwithstanding, a decent breakfast at a fair price, and it held me over well until lunch. Dunkin' Donuts might be onto something here.


Andrew said...

Great review, my friend....
I'd actually been hoping you'd tackle this sandwich. My sister recently gave me a Dunkin Donuts gift card, but I didn't want to waste it on their non-pastry items unless I had someone's testimony that the breakfast stuff is good.

Maybe I'll try it just once.

Anonymous said...

I like to think of myself as an adventurous eater, but that link to the heat-and-eat preformed egg patty truely scared me!

Adam from GrubGrade said...

Anything that makes ordering two donuts at DD seem healthy gets my vote as awsome!

Dennis K. said...

Aw man, that looks delicious. I'm not sure if we have any DD's here in San Diego. And if there are any if I'd be lucky enough that they'd have the Big n Toasty. I'll let you know! Cheers.

cybele said...

That link to the food service item is scary. You know what the only ingredient in eggs should be? Eggs.

They're easy to get, come individually wrapped and pre-portioned. What's so hard about cracking an egg and frying it up fresh?

Oh, wait. It's not HARD, it's just not as profitable as selling "egg simulating patties".

Still, if I were in a Dunkin Donuts, this would probably be an item I'd be interested in (sans bacon).

(I had a real egg muffin sandwich this morning - I get it at the commissary at work and the guy actually cracks an egg to make it.)

Anonymous said...

I had my first and last ( due to calories) but it was one unforgettable eating experience.
Well worth the price. I used a coupon! Alas I will go back to the wraps with summer fast approaching.
It was fun while it lasted!!