After re-engineering the burger into the Mac Snack Wrap last year, McDonald’s Canada is back with another twist. This time it’s taking on the chicken sandwich, which it has scaled down into the McMini, a two-item line joining its menu in Canada on March 30, a company spokesperson confirmed.
Just as the Mac Snack Wrap includes half a Big Mac burger patty, each of two McMini versions has half of a grilled or fried chicken fillet. The grilled-chicken variety is topped with pesto sauce; crispy chicken gets a red-chile-accented Thai sauce. Both are served on mini baguettes. The items were tested in Quebec last year, now they get a full-Canada push, priced at C$1.99 (after earlier testing, shown below, at $1.89). Advertising begins March 22 via Cossette, Toronto, which handles the brand in Canada.
The decision to halve a chicken fillet lengthwise and use an oblong mini baguette rather than cut across or use a patty and have a small round bun instead is interesting. Round and square (with focaccia buns) mini sandwiches have been proliferating on McDonald’s menus in Europe for several years and have done well. Minis helped the chain’s European operations post a 5.2% same-store-sales increase last year, double the improvement for U.S, store.
In Germany, for example, McDonald’s is promoting the small-size Chicken Rustico and Western Beef (at right) sandwiches, the latest entries in its Snack Deluxe line, priced at approximately US$2.46. In Denmark, McDonald’s mini sandwiches are branded as Little Tasters. The latest are a Chicken Salsa Cheese (US$3.50) and Chicken ‘n Bacon (US$3.87). Such mini sandwiches-usually marketed in tandem with tortilla-base Snack Wraps in Europe-haven’t been tried on McDonald’s menus in North America. Until now. And the McMini name is flexible enough to be used with small burgers as well as chicken if the idea is well received.
Full size still seems to be the American way judging by the McBistro Chicken sandwich reportedly testing in McDonald’s in Albuquerque, Baltimore and Omaha. The build is grilled or crispy chicken topped with bacon, white Cheddar, tomato and choice of three sauces (chipotle barbecue, honey mustard or buttermilk ranch) on a whole-grain bun.