American fast food chains have been constantly evolving by offering a new array of dishes to their customers to see if they would sizzle… or fizzle.
Unfortunately, a lot of these fast food items are truly bound to fail — not just fail, but fail miserably. Some of the reasons might be wrong timing, or that people prefer the classic food items, or that some of these flops are simply unpalatable at all.
Here are some of the notable fast food items that didn’t make the grade (and into the regular menu):
1. McSpaghetti (McDonald’s)
In an attempt to introduce Italian dishes to its customers, McDonald’s launched the McSpaghetti during the 1970s. While the product failed miserably in America, the dish is still available in other countries. The McSpaghetti is the most popular in the Philippines, where the dish may be normally served alone, or with a fried chicken.
2. Hula Burger (McDonald’s)
One of McDonald’s spectacular flops is the Hula Burger, specifically intended for Catholics abstaining from meat on Good Fridays. It consisted of a grilled pineapple slice and a melted cheese on a bun.
McDonald’s honcho Ray Kroc decided to introduce this ridiculous vegetarian burger in order to go up against the Filet-o-Fish, which was invented by a McDonald’s franchise owner. Predictably, the Filet-o-Fish won hands-down (and what’s more, it eventually made to the regular menu), while the Hula Burger misfired.
It seems that Catholics weren’t so thrilled just thinking about the odd combination of fruit and cheese on a sandwich.
3. Frings (Jack-In-The-Box)
Introduced in the 1970s, the Frings consisted of French fries and and onion rings together in one pack. It was to be short-lived though, because customers wanted either fries or onion rings alone.
4. Priazzo (Pizza Hut)
Trying to copy the Chicago-style pizza, Pizza Hut introduced the “Priazzo.” While the Priazzo itself was delizioso, the customers complained at how long it took to prepare it. It was a costly failure for Pizza Hut, given the huge amount of funds they had spent on the product’s advertising campaign. The Priazzo was soon pulled off from the menu.
5. Double Down (KFC)
In 2010, KFC tested the waters by offering the Double Down sandwich. It consisted of strips of bacon, melted cheese and “Colonel’s secret sauce,” which were sandwiched together by two chicken fillets instead of two slices of bread. It bombed simply because it was downright unhealthy. Despite that, the Double Down sandwich continues to be offered at many KFC branches outside America, mostly as limited-edition items.
6. Seafood Salad (Taco Bell)
Throughout its existence, Taco Bell has tried offering different food items in hopes to tickle their customer’s jaded taste buds, just like what a lot of fast food chains do. One of these items is the Seafood Salad, which the taco giant introduced way back in the 80s. But after receiving an alarming number of reported food poisoning incidents, Taco Bell was forced to drop it from the menu.
7. McPizza (McDonald’s)
Another fiasco for McDonald’s, the McPizza (which was launched during the 1980s) didn’t take off simply because it took long to prepare, therefore defeating the purpose of the phrase “fast food.” Customers at the time would rather buy pizza from somewhere else.
But lo and behold, the McPizza is not totally extinct yet! At present, there are only two McDonald’s branches in the US that still serve the elusive McPizza: one in Spencer, West Virginia and another branch in Pomeroy, Ohio. We’d say, get the McPizza now while it’s still available!
8. McAfrika (McDonald’s)
The McAfrika — consisting of beef, cheese, lettuce and tomato in a pita bread — has never been released in the United States, just yet. Nevertheless, it deserves a mention here because of the ill timing of the product’s launch and the widespread negative reaction that it received.
McDonald’s first introduced the McAfrika in Norway in 2002, at a time when a major famine was occurring in southern Africa. McDonald’s suffered public outrage because of this, but the fast food giant still insisted on offering it as originally planned. Talk about epic PR fail.