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April 14, 2011

CAC's Bacon Review: Denny's Maple Bacon Sundae

Perhaps a break from the aneurysm-inducing budget nonsense, eh?

I appreciate great works of art. Be it Picasso's Guernica, Goya's Saturn Eating His Children, or Duchamp's toilets.

I am also a bacon afficiando, embarking on my own bacon experiment combining espresso (my fourth greatest love) and bacon which was documented here.

So, when I saw this Denny's ad:

I had to indulge in a potential American post-minimalist masterpiece.

But what bacony item to partake in? Bacon pancakes, while intriguing, are already a novelty I have indulged in. Same goes for the meatloaf (a better version of which is the Bacon Explosion, more accurately described as a loaf of bacon and heart attacks). A BBBLT? I make those on a regular basis, except without the lettuce or tomato (and come to think of it without the bread or the plate it is supposed to rest on).

So I set my sights on the Maple Bacon Sundae:

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

I have always been a fan of bacon-in-dessert items. Chocolate covered bacon, Chocolate-and-bacon-covered Oreos. Any combination of batter, chocolate, sugar and bacon I can find at the L.A. County Fair.

Upon first inspection, my bacon sundae comes in layers, which is always a plus and really an obvious characteristic of any good sundae. Dessert items promising "layers of flavor" as the Denny's employee assured me need to deliver, otherwise you end up with a garbled mess. Since I had to order this to go (I had critical sketching, painting, and heavy drinking I need to do before work), I was pleasantly surprised that it stayed structurally intact in my 11 styrofoam cup:

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

I may be a pig, but I do have some particulars about my bacon. Bacon prepped improperly leaves it flaccid, greasy and fatty much like Kratos on date night.
With any bacon novelty item, it is also very easy for the natural saltiness of bacon to become overwhelming, turning the item into soggy bacon + gross gout-triggering mess (also known as "Arbying" the dish).

Knowing the above pitfalls could befall the sundae, I was weary of taking my first bite. What if this sucks? What if I just wasted money and gas to indulge in foolishness? What if my colon reacts badly?

Ignoring the whatiffs, I took my first bite, and was not disappointed.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

(Yeah, I didn't even wait until I got home. Bacon has that effect on me.)
The ingredients are painfully simple- chopped cooked bacon (obviously left to cool otherwise it would melt the ice cream), vanilla ice cream, maple syrup. The trick to any bacon novelty is this very simplicity, because when you add more flavors to "balance" the salty-sweet-crunch-chewy all-at-once-ness of bacon, it gets messy and off-balance. The bacon, though cold, wasn't too chewy or too crispy so its texture worked well with the smooth ice cream. They also went light on the maple syrup, allowing for the saltiness of the pork product to trickle through between pops of sweet.

Pros: Simple, balanced, delicious.
Cons: Too small for the price, need moar.

My recommendation: get it while you can, or you are worse than Hitler.

Next week: The Breakfast Cupcake at MyDelight Cupcakery in Upland, California:

Breakfast Cake

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posted by CAC at 02:42 PM

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