Enormous Perception

Today Burger King unveiled its new Enormous Omelet Sandwich breakfast offering containing one sausage patty, two eggs, two American cheese slices and three strips of bacon weighing-in at 730 calories and 47 grams of fat. Needless to say, the press and critics are having a field day.  I can only imagine Burger King is following the Hardees Monster Thickburger trend of going to the extreme opposite of the low-carb, low-fat craze in hopes of finding a market with people who just want to eat big.

What stuck me most though was a quote by a Burger King spokesperson who cited that this sandwich has virtually the same calories and fat as many offerings at local diners and restaurants.  They cited Denny’s Grand Slam breakfast which has 665 calories and 49 grams of fat with the implication being that no one is screaming about that.  According to the Denny’s website (in the Breakfast Menu #1 PDF), that stat is accurate and it got me thinking about the perception of all this.  No one raises hell over good ol’ Denny’s and their Grand Slam breakfast, but when Burger King takes essentially the same food and puts it in a bun, watch out!  So, it’s not as much about the food, calories or fat as it is about the perception of what restaurant (or what type of restaurant) is making it available.  Why is that?

For more on the appeal of the whole “extreme food” thing, I previously turned to Laura Ries.  Here’s what she had to say.