This is one of those “I’ll hate myself in the morning” sort of side dishes. Red Robin, in what I can only imagine as an altered state of consciousness, came up with the idea of serving sweet potato fries with toasted marshmallows, chocolate sauce, and salted hot fudge. It sounds awful, so I knew I had to try it.
To begin, I don’t really care for sweet potato fries. As I’ve said before, they’re usually pretty gummy and overwhelming. I can eat five and then abstain for 3 years. These sweet potato fries were cut to a magical width that eliminated that texture issue and produced an enjoyable fry on its own. So, congrats on a good fry!
What happens when you take a miraculously decent sweet potato fry and add chocolate sauce and toasted marshmallows? Confusion. Chaos. Calamity. Not because it’s terrible, because it’s actually delicious! Dipping the fries into the hot fudge adds to that experience and has opened my eyes to new possibilities on how to corrupt this vegetable. I really liked it. I ate the whole thing, and I think I might even order this again sometime. While I don’t visit Red Robin frequently, these fries could possibly tip the scale between RR and another option…but, only if I felt confident that a couple of problems could be resolved.
If you look at the pictures above you might guess what my first issue was. I counted exactly 24 mini marshmallows, and it wasn’t nearly enough! For that basket of fries I think you need twice as many. They were delicious, and they paired extremely well with the fries, so needing to conserve them distracted from the experience. There’s a promotional photo on their Facebook page that shows well over 40. The chocolate sauce also wasn’t distributed very well. If you’re going to serve me a bizarre combination of foods you have to commit to the idea…don’t short on the thing that makes it unique. There was another issue, too.
I sat in the bar at 8:20 on a Monday night. Labor Day, to be exact. It didn’t seem horribly crowded, but there could have been some large groups elsewhere in the restaurant. Due to some kitchen issues the fries came out luke warm (at best), so I was disappointed that I couldn’t review the appetizer at its peak. That being said, even luke warm these sweet potato fries held up and maintained a crisp enough exterior to dip into the hot fudge (which was also luke warm fudge at this point). I got an apology from the manager, and they took a little off the bill, so all was right in the world. Like I said, would have been nice to review the product as it was intended to be served, but I liked it as it was.
Would I recommend these fries? You bet. I give them a 7 out of 10. Could have been more if the fries were hot. They’re only available for a limited time, so if you’re curious you should probably go soon. Tell them that the Sodafry gave his approval. Also tell them to get their kitchen in order so it doesn’t take half an hour to get an order of fries. Your server will thank you. They might even throw in extra marshmallows.
Sampled on 9/5/2016 at Red Robin in Lynnwood, Washington