Wendy's has always been a touch bougier than fellow burger-shillers McDonald's or Burger King — what with its fancy pretzel buns and sea salted french fries — but now it seems the red-haired farm girl wants to go full fast casual, with a build-your-own sandwich test program out in Columbus, Ohio.
Like similar customizable platforms Smashburger or Five Guys, Wendy's customers get their druthers from within five different categories: Proteins, Buns, Cheeses, Sauces, and Toppings. That is, single, double, or triple hamburger patties or homestyle or spicy breaded chicken patties; regular, pretzel, or no ("protein-style") buns; Asiago, American, Cheddar cheese slices, blue cheese crumbles, or cheddar cheese sauce; mayonnaise, ketchup, mustard, honey mustard, bbq sauce, asiago ranch, or garlic aioli; and, finally, pickles, red onions, tomato, lettuce, spring mix, jalapeños, sautéed onions, and/or bacon. Most ingredients are included in the base BYO price, though some are available for a small upcharge.
Last year McDonald's tested a similar concept in Laguna Beach, Calif. Wendy's build-your-own sandwich program is currently only on trial at two locations in Columbus near Wendy's HQ, though Brand Eating notes that any Wendy's burger is customizable if you ask for it. Pretty sweet, but when can I order bacon in my Frosty?