It's one of the world's greatest cruelties that bears and groundhogs get to spend the winter curled up in a three-month-long food coma, while humans have to go about their daily business like it isn't freezing and damp outside. Luckily, Arby's new sandwich has arrived just in time for all your comfort food cravings to start clamoring for attention. The Georgia-based fast food chain, famous for its hearty roast beef sandwiches and curly fries, is well aware that there's no food that couldn't be improved by the direct addition of fried potatoes. With that in mind, they created a sandwich that cuts out the middleman by sprinkling curly fries directly on top. Oh, and the whole thing is smothered in cheese and honey sauce. Are you salivating yet? (That's a rhetorical question. Of course you are.)
According to the Daily Meal, this glorious creation has been named the Arbynator. Its existence was initially reported by the food blog GrubGrade, who was tipped off in turn by a reader in Michigan. Arby's later confirmed that the Arbynator does indeed exist, and it helpfully provided a list of official ingredients.
So what exactly goes into this bad boy? Needless to say, it starts with a bun and some of the roast beef for which Arby's is known. Then comes the ingredient that has everyone talking: curly fries. Finally, the whole shebang is drenched in a combination of cheddar, Arby's, and horsey sauces. (For the uninitiated, horsey sauce is basically horseradish-infused mayonnaise.) It comes in three different sizes ranging from classic to a full half pound of meat. You probably already know if that is up your alley, but in case you need a closer look to help you decide what you think, gaze upon its splendor below.
Nary a vegetable is to be seen on this sandwich — just meat, bread, cheese, and fried potatoes, like nature intended. Unfortunately for meat lovers located anywhere but Michigan, the Arbynator may be difficult to find. The sandwich is limited edition, and the chain confirmed to the Daily Meal that it was only being tested in "certain markets." One of those markets is Holland, Michigan, a town on the shores of Lake Macatawa. If you're a resident or passing through the area, congratulations! You can try the Arbynator for yourself. Otherwise, you may have to resign yourself to keeping an eye on Arby's menus in your own area and adding fries to your own sandwich.
The practice of adding fries to sandwiches isn't anything new. In fact, it's a well-established tradition in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where sandwiches featuring meat, fries, and coleslaw are a local favorite. To be fair, anyone would be hard-pressed to find a type of food that doesn't taste better when topped with fries. Burgers? Duh. Milkshakes? Check. Chili? Bring on the heartburn. This year, Taco Bell even released a french fry-stuffed burrito to surprising acclaim.
Like most fast food chains, Arby's is known for changing up the menu on a seasonal basis. In mid-October, it began offering venison sandwiches (and a limited edition sandwich made with elk meat in a few locations) as a thematic nod to the beginning of hunting season. Currently, the additions to its winter menu include holiday-inspired offerings like cinnamon apple crisp and a cookie butter shake.
Between Taco Bell's french fry burrito and the behemoth Arbynator, can we expect "fried potatoes in unexpected places" to be the biggest food trend of 2018? We'll have to wait and see. In the meantime, you can easily recreate the idea on your own without having to travel to Michigan.