Thursday, June 08, 2017

Wendy's Square Hamburger Patties

What's the deal with the shape of Wendy's hamburger patties? Has there ever been an attempt to explain why they are square, especially considering that their hamburger buns aren't square? This seems to me like spurious product differentiation. "Our burgers taste better--they're SQUARE!"

Possible (but unsatisfying) explanations: 1) Cheese is square. But if you're really worked up about the patty/cheese misalignment, get round cheese. 2) An attempt to make consumers believe they're getting more meat. The extra corners had to come from somewhere, right? But it seems more likely they came from smaller buns than from larger patties. 3) The extra corners taste better. A mouthful of meat and cheese with no bun to hold back the flavor express. Then why have a bun at all? As a delivery vehicle (no one is going to pick up a hamburger patty with his bare hands unless it's sanitized inside a bun)? You can knock down the size of the bun to allow for a better meat-and-cheese-to-worthless-bun ratio, and other firms would follow along this track if it was a truly superior dining experience. The fact that Wendy's is the only square burger restaurant going indicates that they are the misguided firm. ("What about White Castle, huh?!" It's adorable that you call White Castle a restaurant. I'm reminded of Conan O'Brien's joke that White Castle was going to cut out the middle-man and just start spraying its ground-up burgers around the insides of toilet bowls.)

4 comments:

Richard Strang said...

Wendy's burgers are square because they make a big deal of the fact that their ground beef is fresh, never frozen. If you roll out a layer of ground beef, you can easily cut it into squares. I'm not saying that is what they do. The patties are probably still extruded by a machine that could make them any shape desirable, but that was the original reasoning that I hear when I was a teenager in the Eighties.

The Man Your Husband Is Worried About said...

Richard, that could be the answer. Of course, In-N-Out also doesn't freeze their beef and they manage to have round burgers, but 1) maybe In-N-Out is using newer, or at least different, technology, or 2) it's just a gimmick that Wendy's has tried to associate with "fresh, never frozen" so consumers see the square patties and think, "Oh, yeah, Wendy's beef is fresh."

Nancy said...

When we told the girls at church the other day that the kids were going to Ohio, one told us that they HAD to eat at White Castle. ??? I was like, oh, yeah, definitely.

Nancy said...

Wendys, Bring back the pretzel pub burger!