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Monday, July 11, 2016

Frisch's Unveils New Western Primetime Sandwiches

Fort Thomas Matters was invited to try the new Frisch's Big Boy Western Primetime Sandwiches at their Covington location. 

If you grew up near a Frisch's Big Boy, then you know.

When you walk into "your Frisch's" it feels familiar. You know the layout. Your waitress knows if you prefer a booth or a table. She knows if your kids want crayons or whether or not you've been opting for a cherry lemonade lately.

Fort Thomas' Frisch's on Alexandria Pike was a staple in the community for decades until it moved just down the street in Highland Heights. Even after it moved, and a Mexican restaurant replaced it, it was still affectionately known to some as Mexican Frisch's.

The familiar Frisch's crushed ice in the margaritas was unmistakable.

But as familiar as "your Frisch's" feels to you, the company has undergone a rebrand.

It's still "family dining," but it's been tweaked. A revamped salad bar that has some surprising ingredients, a kids coloring station or even just moving the iconic Big Boy near the entrance of the restaurant to make taking a selfie with "Big Boy" easier.

It's about fun.

But it's also about good food and that's what Jason Vaughn, Frisch’s chief executive officer, said they were attempting to do when gave the go ahead for the Western Primetime Sandwich lineup.

The cherry lemonade is also part of a new lemonade line the restaurant has rolled out.  While Frisch's is still under contract with Pepsi, their marketing department has found that customers are moving away from carbonated options. 

"These sandwiches are everything you want when you think of barbecue. The sauce, onion rings and bacon give them a flavor we’re sure our customers will enjoy,” said Vaughn. “These sandwiches are a great menu addition and add to an already successful Primetime Burger lineup.”

The new sandwiches come in three styles: cheeseburger, grilled chicken and crispy chicken. They all feature real premium cheddar cheese, three hand-breaded onion rings, hickory-smoked bacon and Frisch’s new tangy Double B Low ’n Slow barbecue sauce, made with no high fructose corn syrup, on a butter-grilled brioche bun.

The bun was created especially for Frisch's by another local brand, Klostermann's. 

Chef Greg Grisanti, director of research and development for Frisch’s, brought out the sauce first. And just like a wine or bourbon tasting, we tasted it first. 

It was sweet with a zing and had some complexity to it. It set the stage for the burger (pictured below). 

Every Western Primetime Sandwich comes with three onion rings. Hint: If you're stuck on whether to get fries or rings for the side, opt for fries because the onion rings on the sandwich are really big. 

“I’m thrilled with how our new barbecue sauce has come together; it has just the right level of spice balanced by a sweetness from our blend of real honey and brown sugar that our customers are sure to enjoy,” said Grisanti. “These are sandwiches our staff can be proud of because not only do they taste great; they’re made with fresh ingredients made every day in our commissary.”

The crispy chicken. 

The sandwich is outstanding. The bacon was crispy. The onion rings, which were grown specifically for Frisch's, were sweet and a good compliment to savory bacon and bbq sauce.

The price point is probably better than you'd expect as well at $6.99.

My go-to Big Boy platter will definitely be getting some competition from these sandwiches.

The grilled chicken. 
Data from the Covington remodel will allow Frisch’s to identify specific upgrades that are important to customers. Innovations launched at the Covington location will be important moving forward as Frisch’s plans to implement the most popular changes elsewhere in its chain of 120 restaurants in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, an announcement stated.

It's not yet clear what changes might be coming to the Highland Heights location, but the Western Primetime sandwiches are available now. 

“These sandwiches embody the flavor of the west,” said Vaughn. “Annie Oakley spent part of her childhood near where this sandwich was developed in Cincinnati and I know this is a flavor she would have appreciated.”

The kids coloring station. 

5 more pictures below:

The new look is not a complete departure from the company's history. There is a heritage wall that showcases the various looks of the Big Boy characters, as well as images specific to Covington. 

Big Boy himself has even been revamped. He's looking at you. He's also no longer hoisting his famous burger, which reflects Frisch’s broader menu of sandwiches, dinners, breakfast, homemade soup and desserts — because Frisch’s is much more than just one item.

Your Frisch's reflects "fun" as shown by the mission statement right when you walk in. "At Frisch's, good fun happens over good food served by friendly faces," the sign reads. 

Big Boy has been moved to the front. Make sure to follow them on Snapchat (FrischsSnaps). 

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Frisch's Big Boy. I was also provided dinner. All opinions are my own.

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