Friday, November 22, 2013

REVIEW: McDonald's Southwest Premium McWrap (Grilled)

Just when I think I've done it and tried em' all, McDonald's goes and releases a new McWrap! So looks like I've got another review to write, eh? This Southwest McWrap is only available a limited-time too, so when we took the rare trip to MickeyD's for dinner, I keow this is what I had to order before I reviewed any of their other new products- like the Buffalo Ranch McChicken, which sounded awfully good. But I think THAT product is on the menu to stay, so it can wait. Most McDonald's offer this McWrap for $3.99.

Funny story surrounding my family's trip to McDonald's... And if you don't want to hear it, you can skip down to where it says REVIEW in big ol' letters a little way down this post.
Anyway: You see, my parents are divorced, and my brother and I split our time up between my mother and father equally. And six weeks ago, my mom traveled to Las Vegas for a business trip. So, my brother and I had to stay with my dad that whole time. Nothing wrong about that- it was just different, staying with one parent for such an extended amount of time.We weren't used to it, my brother and I. Five days with Dad, five days with Mom... That's how it usually goes, so for once, we were sedentary.
On the night Mom was supposed to come home, I figured my brother and I could just stay at her place after taking the bus home from school so we could clean up the place for Mama- and maybe surprise her with a homemade salted caramel cake, pizza from scratch, a gift, decorations... You get the picture! I suggested to my brother that we would go to McDonald's for dinner, since it's cheap and close by, and my brother, being totally nutty for McDonald's, agreed.
We weren't planning on eating with my father- he had a meeting to go to for a church group in town that night at six. But the morning of, Dad said he would pick us up for dinner at quarter to five. He wanted to go out of the last day with us in fashion! He even blew off his meeting for us. I'm sure there are divorced parents out there who can relate to this. You either get your kids for half of the time- or barely anytime at all. And when you do have the kids over for a longer amount of time than usual, it feels like a huge special occasion, am I right? So naturally, you WOULD want to make the last day with your children special. And if we had to choose one thing that marks a day as a "true" special occasion, dinner would be that thing, wouldn't it?
Then Dad asked us where we would like to go for dinner. There was La Fogata- a nice Mexican restaurant near the lake-but no, my brother insisted upon having McDonald's. I honestly thought of going elsewhere- like the Gateway Cafe, which has a 24/7 breakfast (and I LOVE all-day breakfasts), but when you have your little brother begging and pleading to go to McDonald's since he hasn't been there for so long, how can you say no? Besides- I had a review to do! And so McDonald's it was. Low quality, icky McDonald's.
But even if the food is made from who-knows-what and is ready for you so fast it's scary, and the employees ask you if you would like a drink even after you've told them you wanted a small coffee, and you have to go up and ask for a fork for the side salad you ordered, it's all good. Because it's all about family. And since I couldn't even recall the last time I had eaten inside an actual fast-food restaurant before, eating there was just as special of an occasion as going to an authentic Mexican restaurant or a 24/7 breakfast cafe. You wouldn't think so, but McDonald's was the perfect spot for our last dinner during our extended stay with Dad.


One 9.7 oz. Grilled Southwest McWrap contains 510 calories, 180 of them being from fat, 20g of total fat, 6g of saturated fat, 0g of trans fat, 80mg of cholesterol, 1280mg of sodium, 53g of total carbohydrates, 4g of dietary fiber, 9g of sugar, and 31g of protein. Also contains 15% of your Vitamin A and Vitamin C, and also 20% of your Calcium and Iron.
Anyway, looking at these nutrition facts, I can't help but comment that this McWrap is far from healthy. Maybe I just imagined it, but weren't McWraps branded as a healthy McDonald's option in the first place? Maybe they weren't- I mean, they wouldn't come with crispy chicken or have fatty add-ins like bacon if THAT were the case, right? People couldn't ACTUALLY fall for the fact that that's healthy, right??? No one is that gullible...right...?
But anyway, whether McWraps were originally branded as healthy or not, the fact still remains McDonald's latest is the highest in calories and fat yet. But with chili-lime tortilla strips, habanero ranch sauce, a cilantro-lime glaze, and cheddar-jack cheese, this also has the potential to be the tastiest McWrap yet.

Okay, so I'm officially a pro at opening the packaging for McWrap's up now. But I still get confused as to what end you're supposed to start eating the wrap at- the bigger piece of the case or the smaller piece. It's the bigger, believe it or not. I guessing that's so you get more bites out of the McWrap before you have to take it out of the packaging completely.

Once I found the right end of the McWrap to starting eating it at, I was greeted by a huge chicken strip just barely sitting inside the tortilla. Bottoms up! The grilled chicken was soft and tender, like always- McDonald's grilled chicken is also chewy, somewhat like the fatty part of meats. But not LITERALLY. You can still break the chicken up in your mouth- it's not like ACTUAL fat. But anyway, I feel like I'm over-explaining this.
The tortilla used for all McWraps is soft and chewy, and somewhat thin. I've written about it, like, three times already, so I don't think I need to go into the tortilla any further.
After a few bites of the standard chicken, tortilla, and lettuce, I finally go my first taste of the habanero ranch sauce, and the rest of the ingredients that made this McWrap it's own thing. The habanero ranch sauce was creamy and spicy, but not overwhelmingly so. Maybe it became slightly hotter near the end of the tortilla, where most of the sauce usually gathers, but the flavor never became unbearably hot. I was surprised by the tortilla strips- Believe it or not, they managed to remain pretty crispy despite all the sauce. The tortilla strips had a solid chili-lime and salty flavor. As for vegetables, there were only about one or two slices of tomato in my wrap, and they weren't all that memorable. There was plenty of lettuce- so much so I feel it was the main component of the wrap and was a BIG filler. At least it was crisp.
The one component of the McWrap I could NOT taste was the cilantro-lime glaze. At first I thought this was because there was only a small amount of the glaze within the wrap, but it contributes just as much calories as the habanero ranch sauce, so that couldn't have been true. The habanero ranch sauce must've taken the glaze's flavor over. I mean, mellow tastes like cilantro and lime just can't hold up against the heat of habanero. Some reviewers have said that the habanero sauce completely overpowers the rest of the flavors in the wrap, and now I can understand where they're coming from. I'm actually curious enough to order this wrap again without the habanero ranch- just to see how the cilantro-lime glaze really tastes.
Anyway, I'd say this was another solid addition to the McWrap family (even if the addition is only for a limited-time). I enjoyed having the wrap for dinner. The habanero ranch sauce was creamy and had a tolerable degree of heat, the tortilla strips were salty with a good amount of crunch, and the chicken and tortilla were tasty as always. Shame the cilantro-lime had to be overshadowed by all this. Either McDonald's needs to finds a way to make the glaze's flavor more prominent, or drop it altogether. At least then you'd be saving some calories. 
Despite this being a good McWrap, I don't think I'd buy it again because it's rather unhealthy compared to the other three, and the taste isn't groundbreaking enough to make up for this. But I would say "Give this McWrap a try" at least once. It's limited-edition, so why not?
I'll rate McDonald's Southwest Premium Grilled McWrap a 7/10.

Need other opinions from those who chewed and reviewed? Check out The Impulsive Buy's review of the grilled version of this wrap. Brand Eating and GrubGrade also have given their own reviews, but of the crispy chicken variety.

Which McWrap is YOUR favorite??? Write down your thoughts in the comment section below!

Till' then, this has been RiRi ri-porting!

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