We Bravely Ate KFC's Weird Double Down Dog
Hey, it worked for them once -- some would even say thrice -- so they're doing it again: KFC recently launched the Double Down Dog. But not in the US, the land where hot dogs are king. They did it in the Philippines, where American fast food plays second fiddle to Jollibee.
That’s right, the Double Down -- originally two fried chicken breasts used to wrap a couple of bacon slices and cheese -- is now making a play for hot-dog glory by subbing out the bun for a hunk of deep-fried poultry. Culinary abomination or a glimpse at a grainless future? Well, since the thing’s still around despite being advertised as a two-day-only special from January 26th-27th, we figured it was time to find out.
I lined up and placed my order, which was priced at 129 pesos, or $2.90 USD. It comes with a cup of coleslaw and a small soft drink. I received the Double Down Dog in a small rectangular box. It looked way smaller than I expected. Written on the box, a notice: "Warning: Outrageously delicious. Consume immediately!" Maybe I was too quick to judge. Maybe it was just a David in size but a Goliath in flavor. Maybe it was worth the hype.
Since I like being told what to do by the writing on cardboard boxes, I quickly unwrapped the meal with the strong intent to eat it, but... what sat before me was the saddest-looking chicken sandwich I’ve ever laid eyes on. As soon as it's out of its box, the "bun" of the Double Down Dog lays flat -- it doesn't even wrap the dog anymore! The little cheese dog looked lonely on top of the fillet. It’s also covered with suspiciously named “Colonel’s sauce” -- a mixture of mayo, mustard, and relish -- making it as unappetizing as, well, a sausage covered in, eh, “Colonel’s sauce.”
I took it in my bare hands, rewrapped the dog with the chicken, and shoved it into my mouth, heavily oiling my fingers in the process.
Just as expected, the chicken was extremely salty and oily. The Colonel's sauce did nothing to offset the saltiness of the chicken, nor did it balance the taste out. And that was the good part. The hot dog was another story. KFC Philippines only sells chicken-meat products, and they tried to give this chicken dog a twist by incorporating cheese into it. Adding salty and greasy processed orange cheese to a mealy chicken dog probably isn't KFC's best move ever. Hopefully, its poor test results guarantee that this sucker doesn’t show its head in real Kentucky any time soon.
Cedric Lizotte is a freelance journalist and photographer specializing in travel, food, and technology. He'd also write a great "Dear Abby" column. Read his blog at continentsandcondiments.com, and follow him: @CedrikLizotte.