|McDonald's Taiwan Beef & Salmon Burger - December 2014|
|That's an unfortunate amount of sauce|
Consumed on 24 December 2104
Location - McDonald's Nanjing East Road, Taipei, Taiwan
Combo Price - $139NTD = $4.38USD
Calories - ~579kcal
I was able to try the Salmon + Beef Burger together with the Seafood Balls during a short 2 day trip to Taiwan in December 2014. The Salmon and Beef burger was released in late November 2014, and was only for sale through the end of the year. They also released this as a deluxe variant, along side the slightly cheaper, Salmon-only burger, which they called the Hokkaido Salmon Burger (北海道鮭魚堡). Since we had more food to eat during our short trip, I only tried this deluxe version, as I felt the smaller burger was less likely to be as exciting.
|A couple runaway sesame seeds. Not sure how they found their way on my burger.|
Apart from a 100% beef and 100% salmon patty, this burger also used a premium cornmeal & herb topped bun, carrot and purple cabbage mixed in amongst the lettuce and onion together with a brand new dill+lime tartar sauce. Despite using four all new ingredients, and this is after the 10-20% increase in price McDonald's Taiwan had earlier this year, it was still an extremely affordable combo, at only $4.20USD for the entire set. The burger had similar dimensions to promo burgers in Japan, which mean't it was a little small in diameter compared to larger western burgers, but still had enough size that you didn't feel hungry afterwards, it was around the same size of a Big Mac, even without the need for a centre bun piece. In regards to size, the only letdown was the thickness of the salmon patty. The promotional photos made it look thick, and similar to the special patties I've had from Japan recently. Thinner than a McChicken patty, but thicker than the beef, at most, it would have been about 3/4 a cm thick.
It's comparison to the Big Mac would not go unnoticed, because my initial reaction after my first bite was that I felt something should have been separating salmon and beef patties, even if it was just the sauce. Fish and beef isn't a typical burger combination (not even considering fried + grilled), and I felt with such conflicting flavours, there should have been at least something separating the two. The beef was a standard patty of New Zealand beef, so there wasn't much to talk about there, but the salmon patty was completely new. Prior to my first bite, I was expecting a constancy of a fillet-o-fish, but I was surprised to find that the meat inside wasn't like a FoF at all, this patty was certainly filled with salmon, with the same consistency of chunky canned tuna. It wasn't a 100% chunk of salmon, nor was it nearly unrecognisable minced fish either, naturally, a whole-fillet piece of salmon would have been better, but this was the next best thing. Unlike the Seafood Balls, this was served at a respectable temperature, and even though the patty was recently cooked, the salmon inside was a bit on the dry side. I suspect that had was due to the naturally oily fish not perfectly suited for deep frying.
Yes, the salmon patty was of a decent quality, but unfortunately, it, as well as any other flavour in this burger from the premium bun, to the new veg, was completely hidden by the overpowering dill +lime tartar sauce. The sauce was very, very tangy, and although I'm not a huge fan of anything dill, I did enjoy the flavour of the sauce. The lime in the sauce wasn't overpowering, but it certainly was noticeable, and did blend together well with the dill. The problem was that not only was the sauce very strong, but they had at least 2 burgers worth of sauce sitting on the top bun, so it completely hid any taste from the rest of the burger. This sauce is used on the salmon-only variant, but they've also removed the carrot and cabbage with the beef, if they used that amount of sauce on the single-patty burger, it probably would be so overpowering it would turn me off.
This was yet another promo that I was looking forward to trying, but it just fell short of my expectations. There wasn't anything bad about it, but all the ingredients put together into a single burger was just a bit middle of the road. I'd be interested in trying a salmon burger a spicy sauce, I have a feeling that would be pretty tasty, as Shrimp is becoming a bit too common these days.
Rating - 3.5/5