Burger King Thailand’s new sandwich grabs our eyes and opens our mind.

I spend a lot of time thinking, in a professional capacity, about both hamburgers and linguistics, and there’s a weird quirk where those two fields intersect. Specifically, if you put another word right in front of “burger,” what exactly should it mean?

The rules aren’t consistent. For example, a teriyaki burger is a hamburger seasoned with teriyaki sauce. Likewise, a bacon burger contains everything you’d expect in a normal hamburger, plus strips of bacon. But then consider things like fried chicken burgers or shrimp cutlet burgers. In those cases you’re getting chicken and shrimp instead of, not in addition to, a standard hamburger patty, with the “burger” part of the name designating that it’s a sandwich with the type of bun usually used for hamburgers.

That brings us to today’s culinarily conceptual question: What is a cheeseburger? Most people would say go with the first of the two interpretations we discussed, that a cheeseburger has cheese added to a beef patty. Burger King Thailand, though, is going with the alternate line of logic.

They’re calling it The Real Cheese Burger, and as we’ve just shown, it’s on equally solid linguistic ground with the more commonly held notion of what a cheeseburger is, consisting of two halves of a bun with nothing but cheese in between. If you’re wondering just how much cheese is in there, Burger King says there are 20 slices of melted American cheese, so we’d highly recommend keeping the burger in the paper wrapper it’s served in as you eat it, unless you want a deluge of drizzly dairy running all over your fingers and palms.

The Real Cheese Burger is priced at 109 baht, which works out to around 440 yen or US$3.15 at the current exchange rates. Compared to the prices at Burger King Japan, that’s not cheap, as Japanese branches of the chain charge just 280 yen for an orthodox cheeseburger (i.e. a beef patty with melted cheese on it), and 400 yen will get you a full-sized whopper. Compared to prices at Burger King Thailand, though, the Real Cheese Burger is one of the least expensive burgers on the menu, since a cheeseburger is 129 baht and a Whopper 189 baht. Just about the only Thai burger that’s less expensive than the Real Cheese Burger is the 99-baht Whopper Junior, but it’s only that cheap because of a sale that’s going on right now (Burger King Japan has no Whopper Junior on its menu).

The Real Cheese Burger appears to be a limited-time-only item, most likely because it’s not something even cheese lovers are likely to want to eat every day, but we can’t entirely rule out our suspicion that the global cheese supply isn’t sufficient to support it having permanent-menu status. Here’s hoping we get the chance to send one of SoraNews24’s intrepid food reporters to taste test it, because after all, if we could eat this cheeseburger a few years ago

…20 slices shouldn’t be a problem.

Source: Burger King Thailand
Top image: Burger King Thailand
Insert images: Burger King Thailand, SoraNews24
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