Food and Drink Feed

Coffee Challenge: Who makes the best hazelnut coffee? - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

Cup of coffeeLike so many working stiffs, I've GOT to have my coffee in the morning to get jump started. Traditionally, I'm a Folgers Classic Roast kind of guy and I doctor my coffee with some hazelnut flavored creamer.  So no, I'm NOT a coffee snob.  I don't do the whole beans and a coffee grinder thing, screw that, buying ground coffee works just fine for me.

But in trying to eliminate some sugars from my diet, I've dropped the flavored creamer from my morning routine, switching to real, heavy cream. The various flavored brands of coffee creamer range 5-10 grams of sugar per serving, heavy cream weighs in at 0.1 grams.  But in making that change, my coffee was far less enjoyable. I missed the hazelnut! So during my next visit to the grocery store, I picked up some hazelnut coffee.  On that trip, I picked up a bag of Dunkin' Donuts hazelnut and you can read that review here.  To sum, it was OK, but I enjoyed the way I used to have my coffee, better.  A classic roast + hazelnut coffee creamer is better than the Dunkin' Donuts version of a hazelnut coffee doctored with some simple, heavy cream.  It left me wondering if there wasn't something better out there in a hazelnut grind.  Would such a coffee be Bachelor on the Cheap wallet friendly, or will I have to settle for something less-than-stellar, something just not as good as how I used to enjoy my cup of Joe? 

Reviewed so far in the Bachelor on the Cheap Coffee Challenge:

Dunkin'

Seattle's Best

Read other great food and drink reviews at www.bacheloronthecheap.com


Coffee Review: Dunkin' Donuts Hazelnut - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

Like so many working stiffs, I've GOT to have my coffee in the morning to get jump started.  Traditionally, I'm a Folgers Classic Roast kind of guy and I doctor my coffee with some hazelnut flavored creamer.  But in trying to eliminate some sugars from my diet, I've dropped the flavored creamer from my morning routine, switching to real, heavy cream.  The various flavored brands of coffee creamer range 5-10 grams of sugar per serving, heavy cream weighs in at 0.1 grams.

20190214_151341But in making that change, my coffee was far less enjoyable.  I missed the hazelnut!  So during my next visit to the grocery store, I picked up some hazelnut coffee.  The neighborhood store I was at didn't have a Folger's offering, so I went with the Dunkin' Donuts® version.  I've never had Dunkin' Donuts® home brewed coffee before, I like the restaurant java, so I was looking forward to brewing my own.

Here's the description of the coffee on the bag:  The rich, smooth taste of Dunkin' Donuts® Original Blend with the flavors and aromas of sweet roasted hazelnuts. 

Read the rest of the review go to www.bacheloronthecheap.com


Food Review: Arby's 5 Mega Meat Stack - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

Arby's 5 Meat Stack
Now THAT's a sandwich!

Available for a limited time, Arby's has put together a fantastic sandwich that is a MUST TRY!

Here's the description from the website:  Pepper bacon, smoked ham, roast turkey, roast beef, and chicken filet. Topped with mayo, cheddar cheese, tomato, and shredded lettuce. That's almost every meat we have all on one giant sandwich.

And it's STELLAR!  All the meats were generously portioned and prepared to perfection.  The flavors were all there, the ham, turkey, roast beef, with the pepper bacon and chicken filet providing a nice crispy texture element.  The cheese was melted nicely and the mayo, tomato and shredded lettuce made for a nice finish with each bite.  It's a bit of a messy sandwich, especially when you add a bit of Arby's sauce and Horsey sauce to the mix, but it's a DELICIOUS mess!

Arby's 5 Meat Stack
Meat, glorious meat!

The sandwich cost me $7.51 and there was no need for a side.  This monster satisfies the hunger all by itself making it Bachelor on the Cheap friendly on the wallet.  The Arby's 5 Mega Meat Stack gets 5 out of 5 stars.  It's most definitely a repeat buy, but remember, it's only available for a limited time.

5 stars

$pend Wisely My Friends.....

For more food and drink reviews go to www.bacheloronthecheap.com

 


Food Review: Arby's Buttermilk Chicken Bacon & Swiss Sandwich - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

So in taking a break from my Smokehouse/Steakhouse Trend Challenge, I decided to try out a chicken sandwich hyped up big time by a friend of mine.  He couldn't say enough good things about Arby's Buttermilk Chicken Bacon & Swiss Sandwich and because he's never given me a bad recommendation before, I pursued that sandwich today.

Here's the description from the Arby's website:  Chicken breast fried to perfection and topped with thick cut pepper bacon, Swiss Cheese, lettuce, tomato and honey mustard. Served on a toasted star top bun. Your stomach will thank you for your generosity.

Arby's Buttermilk Chicken Bacon & Swiss Sandwich
Food Porn in a box

This sandwich needs a better description.  It's food porn in a box.  I opened up that to-go box and couldn't wait to bite into it.  Sure, I was hungry, but look at that pic, tell me that doesn't entice you.... 

No more teasing, this is a 5 star sandwich, no if's, and's or but's about it!  The crispy chicken was seasoned well and fried to perfection.  The pepper bacon was crisp, the Swiss cheese is a perfect flavor compliment to the meats, the lettuce and tomato were fresh, nicely portioned and what puts this sandwich over the top is that Dijon Honey Mustard.  Topping everything off so nicely is that toasted Star Cut bun, just look at that chicken fillet to bun ratio, that's a HUGE fillet!

There are no flaws in this sandwich.  It was delicious in every bite.  The combo meal came to $8.79 (large drink and tater cakes, I can't go to Arby's and NOT have the tater cakes...), that's Bachelor on the Cheap wallet friendly and the sandwich is WITHOUT HESITATION a repeat buy!  Thank you Arby's, nicely done!  This just became my favorite item on the Arby's menu!  Minus the tater cakes of course.... 

5 stars

$pend Wisely My Friends.....

For more food and drink reviews go to www.bacheloronthecheap.com


Food Review: Jimmy Dean Delights Egg'wich - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

I look forward to having breakfast every morning, but I'm not talking about a simple bowl of cold cereal or sugar loaded donuts.  Bagels and cream cheese?  Nope.  I like to enjoy a hot breakfast, nothing elaborate mind you, nothing too heavy either...  A simple breakfast sandwich and a cup of coffee is quite satisfying thank you, a nice start to the day.

20190209_074636-1I'm a sucker for a sausage, egg and cheese biscuit, wrap or croissant of some sort, but I'm open to other options and a little variety.  So when grocery shopping one day and in the freezer section of breakfast foods I happened upon a new product offered by Jimmy Dean.  They're called "Delights Egg'Wich"  The breadless breakfast.  The description on the box:  Ham, Bell Peppers, Mushroom, Bacon and Onion Egg Frittatas with Turkey Sausage and Cheese.

Being marketed to address the trendy Keto Diet I'm sure, these things aren't bad, as in, not bad at all, quite tasty in fact.  I thought the frittatas might come off as stiff or cardboard tasting, but they're not and you get all the notes of ham, bell peppers, mushroom and bacon.  The slice of American cheese is a nice compliment and the key to the whole thing - the turkey sausage - it's good, seasoned nicely, you almost don't notice it's not pork sausage.  We are talking Jimmie Dean after all, they know how to make sausage. 

20190209_075049-1A bit pricey at $5.97 for a box of four frittattas, that's about $1.50 per sandwich, this egg frittatas product is a repeat buy.  In contrast, Jimmie Dean's sausage, egg and cheese croissant runs about $1 a sandwich (and in my book is a 5 star breakfast sandwich).  The frittatas provides a nice change of pace from the normal breakfast fare and delivers that hot breakfast satisfaction.  I give this new offering from Jimmie Dean 4 out of 5 stars.  It's a healthier breakfast option and doesn't sacrifice on the flavor.

4 stars

$pend Wisely My Friends.....

For more food and drink reviews go to www.bacheloronthecheap.com


Burger King vs. Wendy's: Who makes the better BBQ Cheeseburger? - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

I recently wrote about what to look forward to in 2019 from fast food.  Trending, are smokehouse/steakhouse style burgers and sandwiches and the meat of the year is predicted to be brisket.

Burger King vs. Wendy's
Does size matter?

Consumers are clamoring for something more, creations beyond the ordinary realm of classic burger and sandwich flavors.  People want smokey, they desire more than just ketchup and mustard, folks are calling for cheeses with deeper flavors and buns with a little more tease than run-of-the-mill sesame seeds.  And it's no different when it comes to other meat on bread options, a.k.a., pizza, consumers are looking for more, something beyond the traditional flavors.

I did a "Twofer" yesterday, tackling two restaurants and their Smokehouse/Steakhouse style offerings for lunch.  It was Burger King's Rodeo King vs. Wendy's Barbecue Cheeseburger.....  The two restaurants are right next door to each other, so why not, right?

Read the full review at www.bacheloronthecheap.com


Food Review: Sweet Baby Ray's Buffalo Sauce - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

Thinking about wings for the Super Bowl?  A Buffalo Shrimp appetizer perhaps?

Sweet Baby Ray's Buffalo SauceIf you don't have your own tried and true Buffalo Sauce recipe, have you tried Sweet Baby Ray's Buffalo Sauce?

Here's the description from the website:  A full-flavored sauce with the perfect blend of cayenne pepper and garlic, with a rich, buttery finish. This sauce clings to wings and has just the right amount of heat to keep you coming back for more. And more. And more.

Some companies tend to over-hype their offerings, placing the marketing of their product as a higher priority than actually making their product live up to the hype.  No so with Sweet Baby Ray's Buffalo Sauce!  This stuff delivers!

I like this sauce because it is indeed so nicely balanced.  It's got the kick without being overpowering, it's got the perfect consistency for applying to whatever you want Buffalo, providing great coverage and yes, it's got a rich, buttery finish.  It's smooth.  I hadn't tried this sauce before today, but it's now my go-to, off-the-shelf Buffalo Sauce.   It's so good, I put some on a slice of some very average Papa John's BBQ Meats pizza and made it SO much better!

Sweet Baby Ray's Buffalo Sauce gets 4 out of 5 Bachelor on the Cheap stars.  It's good stuff!

4 stars

$pend Wisely My Friends.....

For more food and drink reviews, go to www.bacheloronthecheap.com


Food Review: DQ KC BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

I recently wrote about what to look forward to in 2019 from fast food.  Trending, are smokehouse/steakhouse style burgers and sandwiches and the meat of the year is predicted to be brisket.

Consumers are clamoring for something more, creations beyond the ordinary realm of classic burger and sandwich flavors.  People want smokey, they desire more than just ketchup and mustard, folks are calling for cheeses with deeper flavors and buns with a little more tease than run-of-the-mill sesame seeds.  And it's no different when it comes to other meat on bread options, a.k.a., pizza, consumers are looking for more, something beyond the traditional flavors.

20190201_115447Today I was in a burger mood and went with DQ's KC BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger for lunch.  Here's the description from their website:  DQ’s 100% all beef patty topped with melted American cheese, Applewood smoked bacon, pickles, onions, and a Kansas City-style BBQ sauce on a toasted light and airy bun.

It sounded so good I upgraded and made the sandwich a double.  Yes, I was hungry!  

So, "How was it?"  you ask.....

It looks great unwrapped, does it not?  That 'toasted, light and airy bun'....  those beef patties breaking the edge and dripping with sauce, some melted cheese peeking out the side.....  It's almost food porn....

Almost.

20190201_115501That's where the excitement ended.  Nice bun, but let me cut to the chase, while the burger to bun ratio was good, the patties were dry, the sauce was run-of-the-mill ordinary, more sweet than twang and when a cheeseburger is upgraded to a double, why isn't a second piece of cheese included?  It's called a "Double Cheeseburger," right?  The portion of bacon was less-than-generous.  I'm sad to report that the pickle and onion saved this burger.  That's NOT a good thing.  About that sauce, yes, a KC style BBQ sauce tends to run on the sweeter side of BBQ sauces, but this sauce just doesn't do the burger justice and did I mention the beef patties were dry and there wasn't enough bacon?  And why not a slice a cheddar cheese to go with that slice of American?  Cheddar and BBQ is a classic flavor pairing and would really help this sandwich, jus' say'n.  This was a buyer's remorse lunch time purchase.  I had such high hopes.  I paid $8.26 for the combo meal, the sandwich, fries and a medium drink.  The DQ KC BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger gets just 2 out of 5 Bachelor on the Cheap stars.  It's not a repeat buy. 

2 stars

$pend Wisely My Friends.....

For more food and drink reviews go to www.bacheloronthecheap.com

 


Food Review: Papa John's BBQ Meats Pizza - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

I recently wrote about what to look forward to in 2019 from fast food.  Trending, are smokehouse/steakhouse style burgers and sandwiches and the meat of the year is predicted to be brisket.

Consumers are clamoring for something more, creations beyond the ordinary realm of classic burger and sandwich flavors.  People want smokey, they desire more than just ketchup and mustard, folks are calling for cheeses with deeper flavors and buns with a little more tease than run-of-the-mill sesame seeds.  And it's no different when it comes to other meat on bread options, a.k.a., pizza, consumers are looking for more, something beyond the traditional flavors.

After recently having some 'Spicy Brisket Flatbread' from Schlotzsky's, I decided to expand on that and venture into the world of BBQ pizza.  My choices of the major chains on the list to try are:  Little Caeser's, Papa John's, Pizza Hut and Domino's.  I went with Papa John's on this occasion.

20190131_162422Here's the description from the Papa John's website:  Smoky Southern-style BBQ sauce topped with pepperoni, sausage, beef, bacon, and Canadian bacon.

Sounds like it's loaded with meat right?

"Eh."

All those meats are indeed present and flavorful and my first bite was pretty darn good, but as I got into it, none of those meats were exactly generous in portion.  The meats were ample in the center of the pizza, but grew sparse as I worked towards the outer crust.  I will say I've never had pepperoni in a BBQ dish before or Canadian Bacon for that matter and they were both quite nice.  The BBQ sauce while descriptive in name was nothing special, the cheese was ample, golden, brown and delicious but that crust, it's still the Papa John's crust - it needed to be dressed with that complimentary garlic butter - making this.....  An average pizza.  It was good, don't get me wrong, but nothing wow about it.

20190131_162551It's a nice change of pace pizza if you're craving something a little different in a pie, but I'm giving the Papa John's BBQ Meats Pizza 3 out of 5 Bachelor on the Cheap stars.  It cost me 23.39, including delivery fee + tip and so it wasn't exactly Bachelor on the Cheap wallet friendly either.  It's not a repeat buy.  I'd rather spend around $9 for a smoke house style burger and fries.

3 stars

$pend Wisely My Friends.....

For more food and drink reviews, go to www.bacheloronthecheap.com

 

 


Food Review: Schlotzsky's Spicy Brisket Flatbread - Bachelor on the Cheap

By Mike Thayer

I recently wrote about what to look forward to in 2019 from fast food.  Trending, are smokehouse/steakhouse style burgers and sandwiches and the meat of the year is predicted to be brisket.

Consumers are clamoring for something more, creations beyond the ordinary realm of classic burger and sandwich flavors.  People want smokey, they desire more than just ketchup and mustard, folks are calling for cheeses with deeper flavors and buns with a little more tease than run-of-the-mill sesame seeds.  And it's no different when it comes to other meat on bread options, a.k.a., pizza, consumers are looking for more, something beyond the traditional flavors.

20190129_185212So today for dinner - and in a non-burger mood - I went to Schlotzsky's to check out their Spicy Brisket Flatbread. 

Here's the description from the website:

Hickory-smoked brisket with Swiss cheese, basil pesto, jalapeño chips, Schlotzsky’s hot sauce, blue cheese dressing and basil. Served on artisan flatbread.

Sounds good right?  And it is.  All the flavors Schlotzsky's puts together in this flatbread presentation are on point.  The brisket was seasoned nicely, it's tender and pairs well with the Swiss cheese.  The combination of the basil pesto, blue cheese dressing and hot sauce dances on the tongue, the jalapeno chips provide a nice texture element and that flatbread was baked to perfection.  Whoever crafted this concept knew how to partner flavor pairings.  And I even got a bonus in my carry-out order, they opened up a bag of their house jalapeno chips in the preparation of this sandwich - I got to keep the remainder of the bag with my order!

20190129_185236My only problem with this 'meal' is that it's not enough.  While the flavors are there and overall it's a nice flavor profile presentation, it's more of a 'light lunch' kind of thing rather than a hearty meal.  The flatbread - while tasty - is on the thin side and the portion of brisket is less-than-generous.  You don't get brisket in every bite.  That's kind of Schlotzsky's M.O., less-than-stellar on the meat portion, which is unfortunate. 

So that begs the question:  "Is this a repeat buy?"

No.  While the flavors were good, the meat portion was disappointing and so I'd rather dole out the $7.99 I spent on this flatbread on something else, somewhere else. 

20190129_185345The Schlotzsky's Spicy Brisket Flatbread gets 3 out of 5 Bachelor on the Cheap stars.  Yes, the price is actually wallet friendly, but when it comes to spending $8 on something with brisket in it?  I'd rather have something a little heartier, a little more filling, something belch worthy, you know what I mean?

3 stars

$pend Wisely My Friends.....

For more food and drink reviews, go to www.bacheloronthecheap.com