You’ve probably already seen the TV commercial currently airing for Jack in the Box, showcasing Jack sitting next to the President on Air Force One suggesting Congress make food and sell them at the Post Office. In case you haven’t, here it is, thanks to the good folks contributing to YouTube…
Of course what better theme to use for a TV commercial than one that’s presidential with the inauguration of our 44th president literally right around the corner. And as you might expect, Hawaii bears an incredible sense of pride beyond what words can explain with soon-to-be President Barack Obama’s childhood roots firmly planted right here in the islands.
The tide of attention on the President-elect’s ties to Hawaii is already flourishing, including our island foods, as The Honolulu Advertiser published today: Island Foods Getting a Boost from Obama.
“You embraced change for Obama.
Now eat like Obama.”
As the nation prepares for the inauguration of Barack Obama, the nation’s press digs ever deeper for all stories Obama.
Two Mainland papers’ food sections recently produced articles that offered recipes for the food Obama grew up with: Spam musubi, loco moco, chicken katsu curry and hurricane popcorn.”
Well OK, this obviously isn’t a place where you’ll find those kinds of foods, but not to worry; we have plenty of other resources for that.
When I first seen that Jack in the Box “Jumbo Deal” commercial, I was skeptical their Hawaii locations would honor this incredible value.
Take Subway for example, which have/had an aggressive ad campaing for $5 footlongs. But NO, not our Subways. Here it was $5.99. Gotta’ factor in that darned shipping surcharge, right? At least they were coy enough to make it SOUND like it was still just five bucks, short just a penny of that crucial 1 dollar price difference. Thankfully, I heard they reduced it here now to the nationally-adverised $5 price. That’s nice.
But as it turns out, Jack in the Box Hawaii locations indeed do honor this nationally-advertised price. Yet what perplexes me about it isn’t so much its uncanny value, but what’s combined. I mean burger and fries, absolutely! But where do Tacos fit in with that? I mean, I can see hungry and broke college students all over this, but otherwise from a culinary standpoint it doesn’t sound very appealing.
I have to admit – and we probably all do – I’ve come up with some fast food combination doozies of my own in the past that I’m not sure even Harold & Kumar or Bill and Ted could have thought of. Probably though, my all-time JITB fave’ is none other than Onion Rings with Buttermilk Dressing. A combo’ an old friend of mine introduced me to a very long time ago. Oh yeah, raise your hands now. I know there’s MANY of you out there who loveOnion Rings with Buttermilk dressing. That milky, slightly tangy and herb-laced Buttermilk coating the golden-brown-and-delicious seasoned batter with caramelized deep fried onions inside is pure genius. Genius I tell ya! Especially after a surfing or bodyboarding session.
But a burger with a taco? I was skeptical. So as you see, I picked out whatever loose change I could find buried between my car seat and the floorboard and came up with $2.99 plus tax to pay for one of these whacky-sounding Cali-Mex combos.
So I took it a step beyond just eating the Jumbo Jack, Taco and Fries as intended, which is separately. Besides, I already know what a Jumbo Jack tastes like. So do I know what their Tacos and Fries taste like. Who doesn’t?
What I wanted to find out is how a Taco would taste INSIDE the Jumbo Jack. Therefore that’s exactly what I did…
If you’re gonna’ ask why I didn’t also put some fries in there for good measure, it’s because I’ve tried a burger with fries in them before, and I didn’t like it one bit. It’s too starchy and way too busy, plus it detracts the suppleness of the soft bun on top. Na-ah. Pass.
Here I cut this beast in half so you can get a better look at the layers..
How does it taste together like that? Not good. Nope, it didn’t work. Not at all. The Jumbo Jack and the Taco are both two very BOLD flavors in and of themselves with two very opposing tastes. The crunchy corn tortilla and spicy beef filling and taco sauce in it try to cancel out the beefy patty and coolness of the lettuce and tomato in the Jumbo Jack. At the same time, the burger’s thick, beefy patty attempts to neutralize the zestier taco filling.
Simply said, you really don’t know what you’re supposed be eating with the two eaten together like that. Kinda’ like the culinary version of the androgynous “Pat” character of SNL fame.
Afer a few bites, I immediately removed the taco out of the remaining half of the Jumbo Jack and went back to eating them separately, just how Jack intended them to.
I haven’t eaten at JITB for several months now, but it seems they’ve recently? improved their fries. They’re now thicker and even include some skin on it, plus not as greasy as I remember them before. Maybe it’s the particular location I went to that gets it right. Dunno.
Whether or not we see SPAM Musubi, Loco Mocos, Chicken Katsu Curry and/or Hurricane Popcorn being sold at post offices around the nation, we’ll have to wait and see on that.
If you have any other fast food stories or combination favorites to suggest, let us hear about it!
What? the Jumbo Deal: 1 Jumbo Jack, 2 Tacos and 1 order Fries
From where did you buy it, and how much did it cost? Jack in the Box, Dillingham location (next to Tony’s Gas Station), $2.99 plus tax
Big Shaka to: Incredible value in these tough economic times. Fast food joints in Hawaii honoring CONUS -advertised prices. Jumbo Jack one of my favorite super-value FASTFOOD burgers (when eaten alone). Very crunchy and tasty taco tortilla shell (wherever the greasy mystery meat hasn’t absorbed into it). New and improved fries. Genius customer-designed fast food combos such as JITB Onion Rings & Buttermilk Dressing. Experimenting with Food. Hilarious Jack in the Box TV commercials. Barack Obama representing Hawaii in the Oval Office. The concept of Loco Mocos and Hurricane Popcorn for sale at the neighborhood Post Office. Finding enough loose change under my car seat to pay for this.
No shaka to: While your wallet will love it, your arteries won’t. Unlike Obama’s overwhelming universal appeal thanks in part to his Hapa-Haole half African American/half Caucasian ethnic background, the also mixed-breed burger of Jumbo Jack and Taco heritage has no culinary appeal whatsoever; either in how it sounds or tastes. Greasy, mystery meat-filled tacos (but I’ll still eat them when in the mood for crazy-tasty things like that). Failed food experiments. Being a hungry and broke student. Paying for this in greasy, grimey dimes, nickels and pennies (no quarters).
SPAM Musubi rating: n/a
• The Impulsive Buy reviews the $2.99 Jumbo Deal