Eating the Impossible Whopper
The Impossible Burger itself has Burger King’s signature “grill” flavor and sports the restaurant’s accompanying famous sear marks, which is a nice treat for the eyes if you happen to lift up the top bun. On that note, the bun itself is fluffy, structurally sound, and visually attractive, a rare instance of a fast food item actually looking somewhat like it does in advertisements. Also on the Impossible Whopper: ketchup, mayonnaise, weirdly satisfying pickles, juicy tomato, and some lettuce. Sadly, these ingredients are where most of the sandwich’s flavor comes from; indeed, the Impossible Burger itself is actually the least flavorful part of the Impossible Whopper.
The Impossible Burger, which has been juicy and served medium to medium-well at other places I’ve had it, was well-done here. As a result, it’s very one-note in its flavor and texture, lacking the depth I’ve seen before in those other burgers. That said, it’s not bad… it’s just not exceptional either. Texturally, it does resemble a real fast food hamburger, so if you’re just trying to get a burger without all the animal protein, cholesterol, and sodium, this will probably satisfy. It’s just that, as Gordon Ramsay would put it, it’s cooked to fuck. In researching this dish, I found that Burger King’s chief marketing officer, Fernando Machado, claimed that people in his own department struggled to tell the difference between the regular Whopper and the Impossible Whopper. That isn’t surprising to me. But the question shouldn’t be whether it tastes like a Whopper (it does), it should be whether it tastes good (not especially). The measuring stick for vegan and vegetarian dishes shouldn’t be how well they stand up to meat, but how dope they taste in their own right. In the end, on Burger King’s terms, this sandwich is par for the course.