Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Jack in the Box: Sriracha Curly Fry Burger Munchie Meal with a side of Panko Onion rings!

If there's one thing Jack in the Box knows about, it's that sometimes, late at night, people find one reason or another to need to chow down on junk food.  Sometimes it's due to late night cravings after following a strict diet for weeks. Other times it's because you're on the way back from a night of partying and need a belly full of fried to soak up all that beer. Or, you just plain have the munchies, and in this wonderful state of Washington where some things are more legal than in other places, that can happen quite often. 

Not to mention this is Microsoft ground zero, and gamers need late night junk food more than possibly anyone on the planet. What other fuel can carry them into that 14th hour straight of Rocket League?

Very often in these times, the people searching for this food have a hard time making up their minds, so Jack in the Box made it easy for them. Munchie Meals. One box, loaded with everything you could possibly need to put that late night hunger beast at bay. Today we check out the Jack in the Box Sriracha Curly Fry Burger Munchie Meal!

So I hit up a local Jack in the Box, rolled up to their drive through window and ordered this box of insanity, but then I spied those Panko Onion rings I have heard so much about, so I got an order of those too. All in a days work. But what exactly is in this Late Night Munchie Meal?

First up, you get your fountain drink. It's from one of those fancy new machines where you can add flavors to every kind of soda pop you can think of. I'll never complain about those machines because they are a fat mans vision of the future. I can pop some vanilla in root beer and make it instantly better? Or some strawberry flavor in my Sprite? DONE DEAL. Then, you also get two tacos.

I'm going to be honest with you. When I unwrapped this taco I tried to tell myself that there might be some way that it's at least passable. That a taco made at Jack in the Box might somehow at least be halfway decent. It's not. They are so bad on every level. I strolled into this wanting to give a glowing review but the first thing I take out is just...bad. The shell is like a soggy wad of cardboard that someone threw some strange meat, a few strips of lettuce and a third of a bottle of hot sauce into.

I finished this first one. It was my duty as a food blogger. However, I will let you know, one bite into the second one it met it's untimely end by plunging into the trash can But then I helped myself to a few curly fries, which were actually really good despite being thrown into this box without any sort of packaging at all. There are regular fries mixed in there too and they were also great. Cooked just right. They refer to this mix-up as "Halfsie Fries." I approve because I do often find myself having a hard time deciding between the two.

Then there's the main event. The Sriracha Curly Fry Burger. A cheeseburger topped with curly fries and a creamy Sriracha sauce. The picture of it on the display promoting it made it look like it was no less than eight inches thick, with at least as many fries pouring out of it as there are inside the box around it. Real life, it was a little different looking...

The tacos brought me down. The fries brought me back up. One look at this sad little burger and I felt like the Munchie Meal may have failed me. But then I took a bite...

And I was reminded that I should never judge a book by it's cover. This burger was actually really tasty! The bun was really fresh and chewy and the fries on the burger were still hot and crispy. The cheese made a nice creamy layer between the Sriracha sauce and the fries, keeping them fresh for longer. Someone up there in Jack in the Box HQ was really thinking when they put this together.

The burger ended up being a good time. There were lots of flavors and textures coming together that I really enjoyed. Curly fries on a burger should become a normal thing. If I had to deal out one piece of advice to the folks at Jack in the Box, it would be to abandon the tacos completely. Not just in this Munchie Meal, but everywhere. Just stop it. They aren't good! Replace them with literally anything and this meal would instantly be better. Think about it? Two Tacos worth of chicken nuggets? How about just more fries? Maybe some sort of desert item? Anything. But. The. Tacos.

But I also had to try these Panko Onion rings. We had a couple of readers write to us and ask us to give them a try so I was all about it. Especially when I realized that I could dip them into a Die Hard themed bbq sauce! The verdict? They are spectacular.

No lie. I was quite impressed with these! Panko breading is always so good and if you've ever had panko onion rings at restaurant, you realize that it's a flawless pairing, and Jack in the Box didn't cut any corners with these. Did I need them with the Munchie Meal? Probably not, but they definitely left me happy after the taco fiasco and left me wanting to go back and get more!

In the end I would say the Munchie Meal is a great deal no matter what. For the price you get a ton of food. The Tacos might have been god awful, but the rest was fun, quick and solid. Lots of enjoyable flavors and textures that a mind looking for a "Munchie Meal" should find quite enjoyable. I give the Sriracha Curly Fry Burger Munchie Meal a B-.

Panko Onion Rings get an A. So damn good. But be careful if you let them get cold and then decide not to chew them much, it's like swallowing a saw blade covered in broken glass.

For more information on these and other Jack in the Box offerings, check out their website!  https://www.jackinthebox.com/

Review by Rich Brunelle, who currently lives in Seattle but only for a very, very short amount of time.

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  1. Interesting. I tried the onion rings, but they gave them to me in one of those rectangular boxes (for chicken strips, I think?). The price was really high (almost $5 around here) and I got less than five rings total. They were fine onion rings, though not outstanding, and at nearly $1 per ring... I wouldn't order them again.

  2. I get it, really... Jack in the Box's Tacos don't look very good (they looks gross actually, even for fast food) and what kind of taco has a half-slice of American cheese inside?!? Also the beef is a mixture of beef and "textured vegetable protein" (like the cheap frozen burritos you buy at the supermarket). Compared to other fast food, the quality is pretty low, but I like 'em. I think the way they cook these is they fry the meat and shell together before stuffing all the other ingredients inside. The shell is typically greasy and soaked in oil in some sections. There are some crunchy bits here and there. The meat is paste-like, but flavorful. It probably contains a lot of seasoning because they don't give you much meat. The lettuce is filler and texture. And the taco sauce sets it all off with a tart, vinegary sweetness coupled with a slight heat. Jack in the Box's Tacos are cheap food in every sense of the word, but they're good in a guilty pleasure kind of way.