Looking down at the Angry Bird burger in front of me, I find myself wondering what it would be like to tackle this bad boy after a few hours in the water, with wet hair and damp skin. In reality, I’m dry as a bone, which means the air conditioning of the dining hall I’m sitting in at Wet’N’Wild SplashTown is a welcome relief from the approaching summer and not something that would freeze a damper version of me. Wet’N’Wild continues their quest to elevate theme park food in 2018, and the Angry Bird is one of their new signature dishes.
It is a smashing success. This combination of spicy chicken tenders, pepper jack cheese, and Sriracha jalapeño ranch combined with their burger brings the heat, but in a very pleasant way. It’s just enough that you won’t be scrambling for a soda to fight it, and might consider skipping the drink all together to instead jump back into the water to cool down that way. The tenders also add a really nice texture to the burger, with their satisfying crunch. Hardcore heat fans might roll their eyes a touch, but the Angry Bird isn’t here to compete on the heat factor scale, it’s here to satisfy.
“We feel we have to keep up with the trends,” Joe Sanchez, food service manager for Wet’n’Wild SplashTown, tells me as we’re going over their new menu items. With so many food options so close by, Sanchez says his goal is to offer up dishes that are just as good as what guests would find outside the gates so that they’ll stay in the park longer.
Although the Angry Bird is his favorite of the new menu options, he also shared with me his affinity for their new line of funnel cakes. Inspired by the cobblers of his youth, these aren’t just the sugary dough monsters you get at carnivals; these come in flavors like blackberry cobbler and peaches ‘n’ cream, proving that the funnel cake can be a platform for so much.
Other new menu items include carnitas tacos, with slow-roasted pork, pico, lettuce and Mexican crema on two corn tortillas; kickin’ chicken street tacos, with spicy chicken, lettuce, bacon and Sriracha jalapeño ranch; the Texas Luau sandwich, with smoked pork, grilled pineapple and bacon; and the Texan burger, 1/3-pound all-beef patty topped with onion rings and barbecue sauce, which will look truly impressive on your Instagram.
Wet’n’Wild SplashTown kicks off their season tomorrow, which means your chance to give the Angry Bird and the rest of their menu options a chance is close at hand. Remember to wear sunscreen, and let me know how picking up the burger with damp hands goes.