Wendy’s Italian Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich & Garlic Fries Review
So. Much. Cheese.
Wendy's brought its take on Italian dinners to the drive-thru lane. Late last year, the home of the Frosty and the square burger patty added two new sandwiches to its menu: the Italian Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich and the Italian Mozzarella Cheeseburger. Oh, and both of these sammies are topped with a disc of fried cheese. To keep the savory additions coming, Wendy’s also introduced new Garlic Fries. That’s a whole lotta new-new, so for this Wendy’s Italian Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich, Italian Mozzarella Cheeseburger, and Garlic Fries review, I not only tried the combo to find out if they’re as good as they look, but The Circle’s Yu Ling Wu got in on the action as well.
Before I get to the taste test, it's good to know what you're getting yourself into. According to Wendy's, the Italian Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich is stacked with a breaded crispy chicken breast, aged Asiago cheese, fried mozzarella cheese, and marinara sauce, all neatly layered between a toasted garlic knot bun. It joined the Made to Crave lineup with classics like the Pretzel Bacon Pub Cheeseburger. To make it your way, you can get the chicken filet Classic, Grilled, or Spicy. The burger version, swaps in patties for chicken.
As for the Garlic Fries, Wendy's took its classic natural-cut fry and "coated it in a flavorful garlic herb sauce," per the release. To me, it was more of a garlicky seasoning than a sauce (but I'll get into that later). “We have a winning track record of taking familiar favorites and combining them in exciting new ways to deliver a culinary experience that you won't find anywhere else,” John Li, Wendy’s Vice President of Culinary Innovation, said at the time. Is it all a winning combo, though?
Italian Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich Review
The Italian Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich is meant to embody "all the familiar flavors of a homemade Italian dinner," per the company. I can't speak to what that’s supposed to taste like, but the sandwich reminded me of chicken parmesan with all the makings of the classic dish: breaded chicken, mozzarella, and tomato sauce.
At first, it tasted a little dry, but once the marina sauce hit, I was more than happy to keep eating. The combination of breaded chicken and the deep-fried mozzarella translated to a lot of breading, which added a satisfying crunch. The star of this sandwich was the chicken cutlet and Asiago cheese. As much as I wanted the fried mozzarella disc to shine, it was overpowered by the Asiago. I’m all for extra cheese, but flavor-wise, only one could reign supreme.
To do my full duty as taste-tester, I tried each sandwich component on its own, and sure enough, the mozzarella lacked the edge and tanginess you'd get from fresh mozzarella. It was a tinge too greasy as well, but I was able to get past that. I have no complaints about the garlic knot bun that kept all the pieces together. (OK, it could've been fluffier.) For $7.19 per sandwich, it definitely exceeded my expectations.
Italian Mozzarella Cheeseburger Review
Wendy's switcheroo highlights its infamous square patty. I should probably preface that as a first time Wendy's customer, this is truly a first impressions taste test. ICYDK, the square beef patty has been around since Wendy's inception in 1969. So, there's a lot weighing on this patty.
The Italian Mozzarella Cheeseburger can be ordered with a single, double, or triple patty. I opted for the single for $7.19. When you put beef and tomato sauce together, I instantly think of beef bolognese. Alas, the beef wasn't for me. The patty was a bit too dry and didn’t mix with the marinara in a ~bolognese~ manner. It may have been helped by more seasoning and sauce. I trust the square patty shines in Wendy's OG burgers, but this wasn’t it for me.
However, the mozzarella flavor was more prominent here, which I was happy to taste. With the bar set high from the chicken sammie, the burger falls behind — but it was a lot to live up to.
Garlic Fries Review
I could not stop eating these fries, and I now think all fries should be garlic fries. According to Wendy's, the Garlic Fries are coated in a "garlic herb sauce." If you get the new fries — and you should — you'll probably be wondering where the “sauce” is. In my experience, most of it soaked into the fries, but miraculously, it didn’t make the fries soggy. It helps add a richer flavor that you don't get with plain fries.
The seasoning is where it's at, though. According to Wendy's nutritional details, the spice blend is primarily made up of garlic powder, onion powder, dehydrated garlic, parmesan, romano and cheddar cheese, bread crumbs, spices, and salt. I need this seasoning sold in packets — I'd add it to everything. The fries were like the garlic bread for your Italian meal. You'll want to eat them while fresh and crispy. For $2.89, I'll take two.
Most people probably don’t have fried mozzarella and garlic fries as part of their first Wendy’s order, but it was a hit for me. I'll definitely be going back to see how that square patty fares in a Junior Bacon Cheeseburger.
Yu Ling Wu’s Review Of Wendy’s Italian Menu
Of course, you don’t just have to take my word on Wendy’s Italian mozzarella sandwiches and garlic fries. Wu also found herself to be quite satis-*fried*.
Not only did she call Wendy’s Italian Mozzarella Cheeseburger “kind of a slay,” she gave it a total of 6 chef’s kisses. The Italian Mozzarella Chicken Sandwich fared a little better, edging it out with a total of 6.5 chef’s kisses from the Circle alum. But the big winner of the menu was Wendy’s Garlic Fries. You have to watch and see what she gave the savory treat.
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