I debated whether or not to review Burger King’s HP Ultimate Bacon Cheeseburger, given that Burger King has had them on sale for a few weeks or more now and no one on my regular Twitter or Facebook feeds showed any interest. Plus, this “limited time” offer is no longer new and could go away at any moment now.
But I wanted something quick to fill in between my last article and the one I have planned for a couple of days from now, so here we are.
What surprised me was when I was looking for material to use for this review, Burger King in the U.S. apparently has something similar going on. Similar, but not identical, called the “A1 Ultimate Bacon Cheeseburger.” Same concept, different steak sauce… and a different bun, too, apparently. Other than that — going by their website — they appear to be the exact same burger.
They’re exactly the same, except for two things: the top bun is different, and the colors of the beef patties and sauce are slightly different. That doesn’t really mean anything as to the quality, but taken with their respective descriptions…
Make room for our HP® Ultimate Bacon Cheeseburger Sandwich, which features two ¼ lb. savoury flame-grilled beef patties, melted cheese, topped with crispy bacon, sliced white onions, and featuring the Canadian favourite original HP® sauce, all served on a toasted Artisan bun.
Our A.1.® Ultimate Bacon Cheeseburger Sandwich features two ¼ lb. savory flame-grilled beef patties, topped with thick-cut smoked bacon, melted American cheese, and featuring savory A.1.® Thick & Hearty sauce, all on a warm, toasted, brioche-style bun.
There are some differences (the A1 description doesn’t mention the onions shown in the picture), true, but I think for all intents and purposes that these are the same burger. The point being, I think that shy of the sauce used, I can more or less talk about my experience and likely cover both. That, and it makes for a neat little bit of curtain-pulling for how they seem to put these images together.
Anyway, as to my experience (sorry, no photos this time… again, I didn’t really expect to be doing this until it was too late), the burger was quite tasty. The bun was a little more smushed on top than the picture indicates, but it was soft and tasty — it seemed quite fresh, and maybe not as toasty as the BK norm. I’m actually alright with this.
The bacon is the same microwaved (yes, they do flame broil the burgers, and the stripes aren’t “painted” on, but the bacon is microwaved) type they usually use, and wasn’t very crispy at all — more the chewy type of bacon you sometimes get. I’m fine with that, but I know bacon is serious business, so some people may take issue. That said, it really only added a bit of flavor that I almost had to “look” for while eating it.
The cheese was regular American, and I got mine without onion as usual, so no comment there.
Perhaps what impressed me most was the burger patties themselves. I thought the whole thing would be wider somehow, closer to the Whopper, but the whole thing seemed to fall somewhere between that and their regular burgers. Suffice to say, the meat was a fair bit wider than the bun was, so if you like having extra meat around the edges, this may be the meal for you. The ¼ lb. patties also seem to be quite different from any other burger I’ve had at Burger King; unlike the Whopper or the regular style, but with the same flame-broiled effect to the taste, and a bit juicier to boot. Oh, and there are two of them, of course.
The biggest difference between the Canadian and U.S. versions, of course, would no doubt be the sauce used. A1 is a bit more fluid and tangy, perhaps more vinegary, whereas HP is a bit thicker/heavier and more savory. I can’t say how A1 tastes on the burger, but the HP sauce accentuated everything nicely. Really, if you’re familiar with either sauce, you should already have an idea of what you’re getting into with this. That said, if you’d rather go with something more traditional (ketchup, mayo, mustard), the folks at Burger King would no doubt oblige.
I did enjoy the burger, and I may even try to get one again sometime before they stop serving it (on the other hand, Chicken Fries are now in Canada, so…). I might see about dropping the bacon if that also drops the price, as I think the little bit of flavor it adds is probably not worth the added calories or cholesterol they probably contain.
That said, I can honestly say this is the first time I felt genuinely full after eating at Burger King in quite a while. Other times I’ve eaten there, I sometimes tend to feel a bit peckish, but the burger and regular sized fries/onion rings (my wife and I shared each other’s) left me feeling quite satisfied when it came time to walk out the door. And really, what more can you ask for?
The HP Ultimate Bacon Cheeseburger is quite good, and I hope it sticks around — especially since my beloved Chicken Big King seems to have been removed from the menu indefinitely.