CHICAGO – Hamburger giant Burger King Corp. is preparing to unveil 14 new menu offerings and is making no secret of the fact that some will mirror popular favorites made by rival McDonald's Corp. , a company spokesman told Reuters Friday.
The menu revamp is part of a broader effort by Chief Executive John Dasburg to reshape the Miami-based company, which is preparing to separate from its British food and beverage parent, Diageo Plc. Dasburg, former head of Northwest Airlines Corp. , became CEO in April.
The menu, which will be rolled out now through next year, includes a variety of new hamburgers, desserts and some unconventional fast-food it said Lehman Bros. analyst Mitchell Speiser. "It's not going to happen overnight. It really comes down to operations and execution at the store level."
Burger King's menu plans come on the heels of a so-called New Tastes Menu offered by McDonald's, which was introduced early this year. The menu's rotational format gives the company's franchisees a variety of menu offerings they use to diversify their staples of burgers and fries.
A NEW TAKE ON OLD FAVORITES
First out of the gate for Burger King is a new, thicker milkshake that Burger King has dubbed its Old Fashioned Milkshake. Available in chocolate, vanilla and strawberry, the drink is already being sold in many of the company's more than 8,000 U.S. restaurants.
Also in the works is Burger King's King Supreme hamburger, similar to McDonald's flagship Big Mac, except that the sandwich will be flame-broiled and there will be no middle bun. The King Supreme will replace Burger King's Big King sandwich, Doughty said.
The company is also introducing what it calls the 1/4 Lb. Burger, a knock-off of McDonald's Quarter Pounder. Burger King will also roll out what it says is the first vegetarian hamburger to be offered on a nationwide basis by a major hamburger chain.
Unlike faux burgers offered regionally at both McDonald's and Burger King, this one will be made without soy. Other items on the menu include a Chicken Whopper and a Chicken Whopper Jr.
Consumers can also expect changes to Burger King's classic Whopper burger, including thicker cuts of ripe tomato, bigger shreds of lettuce and a different pickle.