The Backlash To McDonald's Singapore's Chick 'N' Cheese Burger Explained

In an attempt to establish itself as a chicken sandwich purveyor, McDonald's released a Chick 'N' Cheese sandwich in Singapore for a limited time and a neutral to negative response ensued. The concept, as McDonald's bills it on its Singaporean website, is that the sandwich contains a mozzarella cheese stick-style patty as well as a chicken patty and sweet tomato chili jam. The sandwich also boasts a slice of cheese.

Other items McDonald's tempted Singapore with included fries with vegetable, tomato, and basil dustings to give them a pizza flavor and chicken drumlets with prawn paste coating.

However, as stated, Singaporeans were not impressed with the McDonald's mash-up. The complaints are captured in one comment shared by Entrepreneur: "Very disappointing. Essentially a McChicken modified with a chicken cheese patty that is nothing to shout about. Sauce doesn't blend well, IMO. Better off adding usual tomato sauce and chilli." No drama, just drab food.

Stick the blame to the mozzarella

While the idea of gooey cheese and chicken appeals, the reality is that stacking a mozzarella stick on top of a chicken sandwich does not play to the mozzarella stick's profile. The issue is that a mozzarella stick is a snack in its own right; the quality of which is dependent on how well it balances a variety of characteristics. Odyssey lists breading, size, thickness, "the cheese pull," and accompanying sauce as aspects to consider how good the mozzarella stick you're eating actually is. 

While you could reuse them as something more sandwich-like, they tend to either be the total filling as in Food Network's mozzarella stick grilled cheese recipe or are rendered as sandwich-shaped by The New York Times. These examples are more likely to work because they do not introduce qualities alien to the mozzarella stick in the same way McDonald's did. Or, to put it another way, combining the cheese pull and the rip of a chicken patty will not result in a compromise that brings out the best of both.

This is what a Facebook user's response to the McDonald's announcement indicated when they wrote, "The cheese patty was so disappointingly mushy. No pull no bite. Basically McChicken with a crispy breaded patty." The limited supply, then, is well stocked to meet the limited demand.