In July, the fast-food chain added a sriracha and kale burger to the menu for a limited time. And in August, it began serving Sriracha Mac Sauce in packets perfect for nugget dunking.
While sriracha has long been associated with restaurants trying to stay on trend, this time it looks like not everyone is willing to bite.
The first sign something was wrong in sriracha paradise was the response to an Inc. article with the headline “McDonald’s Just Rolled Out Radical New Burgers With Millennials’ Favorite Ingredient.”
On Twitter, people were quick to say that sriracha was not millennials’ favorite ingredient. Instead, the generation was craving something else – universal healthcare, possibly, or maybe just some Adderall.
how do you get universal healthcare on top of a burger
— Jacob Rees-Strogg (@PrototypeCube) July 18, 2017
finally a burger with Adderall https://t.co/z10rUoBdxu
— slackbot (@pareene) July 18, 2017
Mmmm… student loan debt forgiveness
— Brandy Lambert (@BrandyLamby) July 18, 2017
A second strike against the sriracha burger came this week in a brutal Washington Post review.
“The sriracha-and-kale combo smacks of desperation,” Tim Carman wrote. “It reeks of a corporate attempt to capitalize on two of the biggest food trends of the past decade (although far after each has peaked). It’s the fast-food equivalent of watching your Dad sport rompers and pledge his undying love for Drake.
Ultimately, Carman finds the premise of the burger to be more offensive than the actual sriracha, which he says is fine, especially on the crispy chicken breast. (The kale is another story – too tough to make any sort of positive contribution to the burger.)
Carman’s response and the Twitter backlash to Inc.’s tweet reveal an inherent truth in fast food in 2017: Nothing is wrong with adding new menu items, as long as chains don’t try to be cool while doing so.
In fact, many people are enthused about McDonald’s serving sriracha:
McDonald's Sriracha Big Mac sauce is…. pic.twitter.com/Aksuz0hmU2
— Kyle Federline (@KyleFederline) August 4, 2017
I want to eat that new sriracha burger at McDonald's.
I can't believe I want to eat something at McDonald's.
— Cesar R. (@BigC927) July 26, 2017
— luis (@LuisCyrus__) July 21, 2017
Sriracha has lost its hipster charm. But it’s still just plain tasty – unlike kale, which has no place on a fast-food burger.
McDonald's came out with this new sriracha Big Mac sauce and its amazing
— syd (@_sydneyjaclyn_) July 18, 2017
This new sriracha Mac sauce from McDonald's is so good with these nuggets.
— asiamariah (@muglizzy) July 26, 2017
PSA McDonalds has sriracha mac sauce and it's amazing.
— Mackenzie Jones (@mackycheez) July 26, 2017
Something that makes McDonald’s burgers and nuggets taste better is all the chain needs – not an awkward attempt to appeal to millennials.