McDonald's Adds Strange New Burger for the Holidays

McDonald's has become known for its various array of menu items, which range from signature staples to limited-edition entrees. According to a new report from Brand Eating, one of the most bizarre items on the chain restaurant's international menu is now coming back — but only for a limited time. As the outlet reports, the Gracoro Burger has been available at Japanese McDonald's locations beginning December 1st. What makes the burger stand out is its patty, which is actually a croquette filled with shrimp, macaroni, and a white sauce. 

The patty is crusted in a crispy-fried panko shell, and traditionally comes with buns, cabbage, mayo, and a croquette sauce. McDonald's Japan will also feature an Angus Beef Bolognese Gracoro Burger, which will be topped with a Bolognese sauce made of ground Angus beef, tomatoes, and a red wine.

The McDonald's Gracoro Burger has become a winter tradition at these Japanese locations, ever since it was initially unveiled in 1993. Some have compared it to the fervor that often surrounds the McRib in the United States.

This is just the latest seasonal item from McDonald's to return for the holidays, with the Holiday Pie returning in "select regions" until January. The company also made headlines for its decision to use IBM's artificial intelligence technology to automate its drive-thru lanes.

"One of the things that we've learned in our 10 restaurants that we've done it is: How do you train a crew to actually not want to jump in as soon as they hear a question or a pause?" McDonald's CEO Chris Kempczinski told Nation's Restaurant News earlier this year. "We've had to do a little bit of training of 'just keep your hands off the steering wheel, let the computer do its work.'"

"Most of those are not ready for prime time, nor will they be ready for prime time over the next five years or so," Kempczinski explained. "The level of investment that would be required, the cost of that equipment, we're nowhere near to what the break-even would need to be from a labor-cost standpoint, to make that a good business decision for franchisees."

What do you think of the Gracoro Burger coming back to McDonald's Japan restaurants? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!