Andrew Vazzano of The ‘Ropolitans tipped me off to this gallery of “The Tastiest, Craziest American Fast Food Exports in the World.” I’ve seen similar lists before, but nearly all of these products are new to me. I suggest clicking it, checking it out, and keeping it open in another tab if you plan to read the rest of this post, in which I decide on spec whether I’d eat the fast-food exports in question.
Pizza Hut’s Dubai Cheese Burger Crown Crust Pizza: I’ve never been to Dubai and I haven’t been to Pizza Hut since an ill-fated and desperate effort to eat something recognizable while in China in 2007, but this seems like the perfect confluence of that city and that restaurant chain. Dubai boasts many of the boldest, most awesome and most ostentatious buildings in the world, and Pizza Hut loves to find new, gimmicky ways to market crappy pizza. The Cheese Burger Crown Crust Pizza combines Dubai’s apparent love for innovative, over-the-top design with Pizza Hut’s love for creating things I find hilarious and would never eat. It’s called a pizza, but it doesn’t even resemble a pizza. Verdict: Would not eat.
Taco Bell India’s Potato and Paneer Burrito: I shy away from items featuring potatoes at domestic Taco Bells, but the addition of a heretofore undiscovered Taco Bell ingredient — paneer — makes this one intriguing. Plus the photo gallery says there’s Nacho Cheese in there as well, which would mean multiple cheeses and something to remind you you’re eating Taco Bell. Verdict: Want. It’s from Taco Bell.
McDonald’s France’s McBaguette: Per the description, it’s “oblong hamburger patties topped with Emmental cheese, arugula, and mustard sauce on a convection oven’d baguette.” That sounds like it’d play pretty much anywhere. Actually, I kind of want to make that. Verdict: Would definitely eat.
McDonald’s Brazil’s Pão de Queijo: The big reveal here is that Brazilians have a “beloved cheesy bread” and I’ve somehow gone 31 years without knowing about it or trying it. Menupages lists 11 places in New York that serve it. Can anyone vouch for any of them? As for the McDonald’s version: It seems hard to screw up cheese-stuffed bread, but harder still to determine why anyone would opt to get it at McDonald’s if it’s popular locally. Verdict: Would eat if it were my only option for pão de queijo, but I can’t figure out why that would ever be the case.
Burger King Canada’s Poutine: Poutine is amazing, but the pão de queijo thing applies here as well: If you’re someplace where poutine is served elsewhere, why are you getting poutine at Burger King? Verdict: If for whatever reason circumstance put me in a Canadian Burger King, certainly.
Domino’s Pizza Malaysia’s Sambal Pizza: If I’m ever in Malaysia and eating at Domino’s, something has gone horribly awry. And I’m not much one for anchovies or onions on pizza, so I’d shy away from this even if that did happen. But the idea of sambal pizza is probably worth pursuing. Verdict: Would not eat.
Denny’s New Zealand’s Roast Lamb: Without knowing much about New Zealand beyond what I’ve learned from the Lord of the Rings trilogy and Flight of the Conchords, I generally assume New Zealand operates on an entirely sheep-based economy. In fact I’m kind of surprised to see the price for this dish in dollars and instead of pounds of fleece, or that it’s not a BYOL arrangement where you show up with however much lamb meat you want to eat at Denny’s and they prepare it for you and serve it up with peas and whatever those orange things are. Also, lamb is pretty delicious, but this looks absolutely disgusting. If that’s the best product shot they could come up with, it’s terrifying to imagine what it’d look like in real life. And I’m pretty sure that gravy is hot fudge. Verdict: No.
KFC Pakistan’s Rice n’ Spice: This is “a biryani dish of rice cooked with spicy chili chicken.” I want that and I can’t imagine it wouldn’t play in domestic KFCs. Also, the gallery says Pakistani KFCs serve “an assortment of deep-fried sandwiches.” Pakistan, huh? Verdict: Want.
McDonald’s Italy’s Mozzarella Burger: There are few foods and combinations of foods to which I object on principle, and one of them is mixing mozzarella and mayonnaise. But that really goes for legit, Italian-deli fresh mozzarella, which I assume they’re not serving at McDonald’s. And a burger on a focaccia bun with basil-tomato mayonnaise and greasy McDonald’s-style mozzarella sounds like a decent novelty item for a limited run in the states. Again, not something I’d eat in Italy, despite what I suggested that one time. Verdict: Would eat once.