01 March, 2013

Tropical Orange "Flavour Burst" Ice Cream - Singapore - February 2013

Consumed on 02 February 2013
Location - McDonald's Centrepoint Mall, Orchard Road, Singapore
Price - $1.00SGD = $0.81USD
Calories - ~200kcal.

Throughout January, and for the first couple weeks of February, the "Dessert Kiosks" at McDonald's here in Singapore we promoting the Tropical Orange "Flavour Burst" ice cream cone.  Throughout my time in Singapore and the times I was visiting before I moved here, I've noticed a decent selection of flavours cycle through, including Green Apple, Root Beer, Chocolate, and a various selection of fruit flavours.  Normally, I pass on these as they don't seem that interesting nor would a reviews would get pretty repetitive, but this one Tropical Orange variant was different.   First, these promo flavours are usually only promoted with a small sign down near the cash register, I've only noticed one other large poster, and that was for the Root Beer flavour (see the photo below).  This Tropical Orange cone had a massive bright orange poster at every Dessert Kiosk I passed.  Another reason why this was special, was that McDonald's was promoting it at a $0.20 premium over the previous flavours, instead of $0.80, this one was $1, so I wanted to give it a try to see if anything was special about it.

The previous large Root Beer flavour poster (right side)

I had this cone at the Centrepoint Mall branch, and the woman who took my order at the dessert kiosk refused to process the credit card payment, as the dessert kiosk register didn't have a card reader.  I've paid by card at this same branch before, and the girl at the time didn't have any problem walking the 5 steps to her right to use the register next to her to process the card, but apparently this was too much for her and she insisted I paid cash.  It was only a dollar, but I still prefer to pay on card so I earn miles, and can track my monthly expenses easier.  Though, what was a bigger disappointment was that she also said they could not print a receipt (again, wouldn't have been an issue if she took my card), so that's why there isn't a photo of the receipt for this cone.

As I watched her make the cone, I was slightly impressed, as I always thought that these 'favour burst' were just a bit of syrup drizzled over a standard vanilla ice cream.  I learned that it actually comes out of the machine that way, and the flavouring is mixed throughout the entire portion of ice cream.  I guess this explains why they only ever have 2-3 flavours on offer at any time, as they need the machine to make these, it also helped me justify the 25% premium it has over the standard vanilla cone.

My wife, though she wasn't my wife at the time, as we were getting married at the end of the week, was saving a seat for me as it was very busy (unlike when I reviewed the Honey Lemon Drumlets a couple weeks later).  She was busy on the phone when I sat down, and as soon I took the first bite (I guess you could call it a lick), the throught that crossed my mind was 'ewwwww'.  I guess my face told her the story and she asked if it was gross.  She had the next bite and her reaction was pretty much the same.  It was terrible.  I was trying to think of orange flavoured things that I could compare it too, but the only thing that was crossing my mind was 'this is probably what orange flavoured polystyrene tastes like'.  Not only did it taste nothing like orange, it had an acidic flavour that I just couldn't pinpoint. I will admit, I finished the ice cream because my wife wanted to eat the cone, and the more I had, the less horrible I thought it was, but it was still far from anything I would ever want to eat again.

Rating - 1/5

Oh, one more thing I noticed.  This cone was not a more expensive variation, since they finished the Tropical Orange flavour, the originals all now share the same $1 price tag, up from $0.80.  Thanks for the sneaky price increase McDonald's Singapore...and you thought we wouldn't notice.