Big King

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This article is about the hamburger. For the hill in Auckland, New Zealand, see Three Kings, New Zealand.
Big King
Big King.jpg
Big King
Nutritional value per 1 sandwich (196 g)
Energy 490 kcal (2,100 kJ)
32 g (11%)
Sugars 7 g
Dietary fiber 2 g (8%)
28 g (43%)
Saturated 11 g (60%)
Trans 1 g
27 g
Trace metals
Sodium
(47%)
700 mg
Other constituents
Cholesterol 85 mg

All data displayed follow the Canadian Food and Drug Act and Regulation regarding the rounding of nutritional data.
Percentages are roughly approximated using US recommendations for adults.

The Big King sandwich is a Burger King hamburger that is sold internationally in several forms. It was originally configured identically to the McDonald's Big Mac including a three piece roll. It was later reformulated as a standard double burger, and given several variations on its name, including Double Supreme and King Supreme. The product was discontinued in United States after the late 1990s, but it returned to said market in November 2013 as a permanent product; the product is also available in several other countries in different formats. There is also a chicken variant of the sandwich in the United States and Canada.

The company sells slightly different versions of the sandwich between international markets, with or without the center roll. Being one of the company's major offerings, the Big King sandwich is sometimes the center of product advertising for the company. Additionally, as a major product in the company's portfolio, Burger King has registered many global trademarks to protect its investment in the product.

History[edit]

Originally, the burger had a look and composition that resembled the Big Mac: it had two beef patties, "King" sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles and onions on a three-part sesame seed bun. Because its patties are flame-broiled and larger than McDonald's grill fried, seasoned hamburger patties and the different formulation of the "King Sauce" vs. McDonald's "Special sauce", the sandwich had a similar, but not exact, taste and different caloric content.

Initially named the Double Supreme Cheeseburger and released in 1993, the sandwich was renamed the Big King and reintroduced in 1996.[1] In 2001, the company re-branded it to the current King Supreme name as part of a menu reorganization designed to better compete with a similar planned menu expansion at McDonald's early the next year.[2] While the sandwich was discontinued in the United States in 2003, sales continued in Canada and parts of Europe. The sandwich was also modified in Canada and parts of South and Central America to include as single patty version and a larger version, called the King Supreme XXL, in Europe.[3] The original version of the Big King was reintroduced as a permanent menu item in 2013,[4][5] with a chicken variant introduced in May 2014.[6] When first reintroduced in 2013, the sandwich was made with two of the company's 1.7 oz (48 g) hamburger patties, but was modified in February 2014 two use two 2.0 oz (57 g) Whopper Jr. patties.[7]

Competitive products[edit]

As noted, the Big King sandwich was introduced to compete directly with the McDonald's Big Mac sandwich. It joins a group of sandwiches from other vendors that are designed as counters to the more well-known McDonald's sandwich. This includes the Big Shef sandwich originally from now-defunct chain Burger Chef and occasionally produced as a limited time offering (LTO) from current trademark owner Hardees.

Product description[edit]

The Big King is a hamburger, consisting of two (2) grilled beef patties, sesame seed bun, King Sauce (a Thousand Island dressing variant), iceberg lettuce, onions, pickles and two (2) slices of American cheese.

Variants[edit]

  • The Double Supreme (alias)
  • The King Supreme (alias)
  • The King Supreme Jr. (Single hamburger patty)
  • Hambúrger Supremo (Brazilian version of King Supreme Jr.)
  • The Big King XXL (a 1/2 pound Big King, with two Whopper patties)

Advertising[edit]

The King Supreme debut with an advertising campaign created by the McCaffery Ratner Gottlieb & Lane agency which featured blues legend B.B. King. The ads pushed the companies lunch and dinner periods as the best time to have the sandwich and had King doing a voice over in which he alternately talked or sang about the sandwiches.[8]

Controversies[edit]

The company's online advertising program in Spain states that the BK XXL line as being made "with two enormous portions of flame-broiled meat that will give you all the energy you need to take the world by storm." This claim combined with the television advertising were the prime motivators behind the Spanish government's concerns with the XXL sandwich line. The government claimed that campaign violated an agreement with the government to comply with an initiative on curbing obesity by promoting such a large and unhealthy sandwich. In response to the government's claims, Burger King replied in a statement: "In this campaign, we are simply promoting a line of burgers that has formed part of our menu in recent years. Our philosophy can be summed up with the motto 'As you like it,' in which our customers' taste trumps all." The company went on to say the it offers other healthier items such as salads and that customers are free to choose their own foods and modify them as they desire.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Lubow, Arthur (19 April 1998). "Steal This Burger". The New York Times. Retrieved 4 December 2007. "Burger King reports that in blind tastings consumers prefer its recently introduced Big King to the Big Mac by a wide margin." 
  2. ^ Amy Zuber (17 December 2001). "Listen up, Mac: BK aims to reign supreme, orders menu changes". Nation's Restaurant News. Retrieved 4 December 2007. "The new "King Supreme" -- which will replace Burger King's poor-selling Big King-- is similar to the Big Mac except that the burger will be flame-broiled and topped with a different sauce and no middle bun will be used, according to BK spokesman Rob Doughty." 
  3. ^ a b AP Wire (16 November 2006). "Spain Nixes Burger King Ad". CBS News. Archived from the original on 12 October 2007. Retrieved 26 September 2007. 
  4. ^ Horovitz, Bruce (5 November 2013). "Burger King re-rolls out Big Mac-buster Big King". USAToday. Retrieved 5 November 2013. 
  5. ^ Wong, Vanessa (7 November 2013). "Burger King’s Big Mac Clone Becomes Even More of a Knockoff". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  6. ^ Patton, Leslie (17 April 2014). "Burger King’s Big King Hamburger Gets a Chicken Makeover". Bloomberg. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  7. ^ Horovitz, Bruce (11 February 2014). "Burger King beefs up Big King, tops Big Mac". USA Today. Gannet. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  8. ^ "Burger King Launches BB King Ad Campaign". Restaurant Business News. 2002-01-14. Retrieved 2007-12-04. "When we developed these new sandwiches, we asked him [BB King] to star in the commercials to lend his musical talent and to acknowledge our customers' tastes not only in food but also in music." 

See also[edit]

Similar sandwiches by other vendors: