The folks at Denny's seem to have found their niche. While other chains struggle to keep an identity, Denny's said, "Screw it! Let's give the people what they want... a bacon celebration!". Baconalia returns today, and Denny's was nice enough to invite me down to their South Carolina headquarters to sample the menu.
Denny's preempts their Baconalia menu with this statement: "Bacon is the star of every dish it appears in. Bacon owns breakfast, leads the way at lunch and absolutely dominates dinner. Bacon even steals the show at dessert. That's why we're celebrating man's most delicious indulgence with our sizzling new bacon-bountiful creations."
Before I give my first impressions, let's see what the menu has to offer.The Ultimate BLT: This BLT lives up to its name. Made with four strips of pepper bacon, spring mix, sliced tomatoes and fresh avocado. Topped with a creamy pepper spread on toasted sourdough bread. Served with a side of our wavy-cut French fries. $6.99
New! Caramel Bacon Stuffed French Toast:A breakfast favorite gets a bacon upgrade with a sweet and savory layer of bacon and white chocolate spread between two thick slices of our fabulous French toast. Then we top it off with caramel sauce and diced bacon. Served with two eggs cooked to order, two hickory-smoked bacon strips and a side of warm syrup. $7.99
Pepper Bacon & Eggs: Bacon rubbed with black pepper makes your favorite meal even better. Served with two eggs cooked to order, hash browns and choice of bread. $5.49
Spicy Pepper Bacon Jack Burger: A hand pressed beef patty topped with two crispy strips of pepper bacon, melted Pepper Jack cheese, sliced jalapenos and chipotle sauce. Served with a side of our wavy-cut French fries. $7.99
Ultimate Bacon Breakfast: There's a side of bacon and then there's a Baconalia side of bacon. Enjoy six savory strips of our classic hickory-smoked bacon. Served with two eggs cooked to order, crispy hash browns and choice of bread. $6.99
New! Pepper Bacon Avocado Omelette: Another bacon inspired dream come true. Three egg omelette with diced pepper bacon, fresh avocado, fire roasted peppers and onions, mushrooms, melted American cheese and pico de gallo. Served woth hash browns amd your choice of bread. $7.99
New! Pepper Bacon Jack Tilapia:Bacon tops everything. Our seasoned tilapia grilled and topped with fresh spinach sauteed with diced bacon and pico de gallo. Smothered with warm Pepper Jack cheese sauce and served with your choice of two sides and dinner bread. $8.99
New! BBQ Bacon Mac 'N Cheese Bites: Generous bits of bacon are added into six golden-fried macaroni and cheese bites. Served with BBQ sauce and a side of warm Pepper Jack cheese sauce topped with bacon. $4.59
New! Maple Bacon Milk Shake: Taking milk shakes to new and more bacon-y heights. Our thick, hand-dipped milk shake is a delicious blend of premium vanilla ice cream, maple-flavored syrup, diced bacon and topped with whipped cream. $3.69
New! Salted Caramel Brownie With Bacon: We warm a sweet and savory salted caramel brownie and top it with a scoop of premium vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce and diced bacon. $3.69
Maple Bacon Sundae: We start with maple-flavored syrup and a scoop of rich, premium vanilla ice cream and then add a generous sprinkle of our diced hickory-smoked bacon. Add another sweet layer of syrup and ice cream topped with more, you guessed it, bacon and a drizzle of syrup. $2.99
I really have to give Denny's credit for bringing back Baconalia. They received quite a bit of scrutiny during the first run, but it didn't phase them. Denny's even did what a lot of companies wouldn't do, and praised the South Park episode parody-ing the first Baconalia.
Denny's knows what they're serving is fun and glutinous, and they don't take themselves any more seriously then they have to. That wins major points in my book. Is the new Baconalia menu a hit? For the most part, I think it's great. While the Tilapia and Mac 'N Cheese Bites flopped, everything else ranged from solid to awesome. The Spicy Pepper Bacon Jack Burger (It seems as if the menu has two words backwards) was the highlight of the show. It was actually spicy, packed with flavor and the pepper bacon is heavenly. Couple that with a Maple Bacon Milk Shake, and you have the perfect old-school diner meal capped of with a delicious crown of bacon. The BLT and Omelette were great, but the avocado stole the show in both cases. For $0.99 you can add two slices of bacon to just about anything. Be sure to ask for the pepper bacon though as it's some of the best in its class, while the hickory-smoked is just par for the course. I highly encourage adding a few bacon slices to the Super Bird if for some reason you decide to order off the regular menu.
My only real complaint was that the Baconalia menu seemed a little less risky this time. I was hoping to see maybe bacon coffee or battered bacon fries, but alas, I will have to wait for another Baconalia to see how crazy the menu could get. If you're not already on your way to check out the bacon party, what do you think of the new menu? What silly bacon dishes would you like to see in the future?