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Burger King’s New Chicken Parmesan Comes With a Side of Reality TV Nostalgia

Does the sandwich promoted by the Jersey Shore cast win the Snooki stamp of approval?

By Joanna O'Leary July 31, 2017

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At the end of a good GTL, it's time for some BK.

Buoyed by my recent very positive experience with Burger King’s Mac and Cheetos Fries, I was game to do more research on the fast food chain’s other specials, and when I saw that the former cast of The Jersey Shore was involved in the promotion of the revamped chicken Parmesan sandwich, I was DTE (“Down To Eat”), baby!

To say I owe the Jersey Shore a debt of gratitude for my running endurance is perhaps the understatement of the decade. For years, every morning I ran mile after mile while watching reruns on the monitor affixed to the treadmill at my gym. Fueled by sadistic fascination, a healthy dose of moral superiority and whatever baked goods I had snarfed the night before, I watched as Deena, The Situation and the rest of that rag-tag gang of lovable guidos engaged in shenanigans all lover the Garden State coastline (and in one particularly amazing season, Italy!). 

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Bold Italian flavors.

Burger King advertises the sandwich as having “bold, Italian flavors,” which to me, being of Italian descent and having some familiarity with the nation’s salient traits, suggested it would taste loud, warm and vindictive. I was right on one out of three, for my sandwich was delivered piping hot with the thin layer of cheeses pleasantly gooey. And speaking of cheeses (note the plural), whatever amount of Parmesan was actually added to the sandwich was indiscernible compared to the mozzarella whose terrific dairy saltiness dominated.

However, these salty notes in combination with the sodium-stuffed chicken and crispy exterior batter rendered the sandwich borderline inedible. More umami via a heavier coating of marinara sauce could have mitigated this issue; unfortunately, there was only the faintest of schmears. What is going for this sandwich is the fluffy egg bun and tender, juicy white meat filet. If Burger King tweaks their recipe to double down on the tomato sauce and scale back on the salt, then it truly might worthy of a Snooki stamp of approval.

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