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Here's What a Food Critic Said About McDonald's New BTS Meal

It's all about the sauces—but are they worth the hype?

After months of waiting, American fans have finally had a chance to try the BTS McDonald's meal which officially launched last week. While other celebrity collaborations with the fast-food giant usually consist of cleverly marketing the items that are already available on the menu, the BTS meal is special because it brings something new to the table—two sauces that have never before been seen at McDonald's locations in the United States.

And according to Louisa Chu, a food critic for the Chicago Tribune, the new sauces are really what this meal is all about. The Cajun and Sweet Chili were inspired by sauces offered at McDonald's restaurants across South Korea—the band's home country.

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As they recently revealed in a promo video for the collaboration, the boys from BTS have fond memories of frequenting McDonald's in Korea. So the hype around this meal isn't just about the fact that your chicken nuggets and fries have two new flavors to be dunked into, it also makes the BTS fans feel close to the band by enjoying the same food the band members used to enjoy when they were but young up-and-comers.

"There was a McDonald's about 10 minutes away from the dorm where we used to live before we debuted," Jin said. "It's open 24 hours, so we would go there when we were hungry, and we'd ask each other, 'How was your day?' and have a good time."

But back to the sauces—are they actually worth the hype? According to Chu, they are a worthwhile effort but left her a bit underwhelmed. She likened the dark-red Sweet Chili sauce to a "solid sweet-and-sour", and said the orange-hued Cajun sauce "nods at hot mustard and gochujang, the fermented Korean chile paste."

"The sauces, when dipped with nuggets or fries, played as well together as a well-synchronized boy band's dance moves: Smooth, but unsurprising," she wrote in a review of the BTS meal.

On the other hand, Bill Oakley, a fast-food critic with a sizeable following across social media platforms, gave the new sauces major thumbs-up, saying they're by far his favorite dipping sauces at McDonald's.

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Mura Dominko
Mura is a senior news editor leading ETNT's coverage of America's favorite fast foods and restaurant chains. Read more