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Dish Deathmatch: Drive-Thru Breakfast Battle Royale

Miriam Bowers Abbott Miriam Bowers Abbott Dish Deathmatch: Drive-Thru Breakfast Battle Royale
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When Wendy’s pulled back from the breakfast marketplace last year, pundits blamed the mega-force which is McDonald’s for the local chain’s failure to thrive. Diners were just too entrenched in the McMuffin’s goodness to venture elsewhere and try new things.

But there’s another locally-based chain that’s taking a whack at McDonald’s morning market share, and Ronald should be afraid, very afraid.

That chain is at White Castle. While some might love it for the onion burgers served at 2am, the Castle’s morning breakfast menu is a whole new game.

Time for a little side-by-side in the breakfast sandwich world. McDonald’s versus White Castle.

For starters, it seemed pretty clear that nothing could ever top the disposition of the White Castle drive-through clerk. Cheerfully engaging, she was someone for whom you’d want to actually walk inside just to talk to.

But for the record, the McDonald’s team was pretty perky too. If not as engaging, surely a step up from the average daytime drive-through experience. The breakfast shift must just be a cut above all other shifts.

For the one person on the planet who has never had a McDonald’s Sausage McMuffin, here is what it involves: an english muffin (characteristically a little spongy), with a perfectly circular egg, lots of melted cheese, and a sausage patty.

Up against that is White Castle’s Breakfast Sandwich with Sausage. It’s on real whole-grain bread (with a little grilled goodness) filled with feathery folds of a smashed-yolk fried egg, a little cheese and a sausage patty.

While there was absolutely nothing wrong with the McMuffin, White Castle’s offering bested it in a couple of categories. First, its bread and egg are appealingly homespun. Beyond that, the White Castle sausage had a meatier, less fatty-slash-rubbery texture. At White Castle, you don’t feel like you’re shoving a big fatsicle in your mouth.

Advantage: home team.

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