You Can Only Get Burger King's Angry Whopper In One Place

Why Burger King's new limited-time menu item is only available in Columbus, Ohio.

The year 2009 was a tough time. The U.S. economy narrowly avoided a near total collapse, and Burger King was looking to diversify its burger portfolio with its latest addition, the Angry Whopper. The new burger aimed to titillate the taste buds with jalapeño slices, pepper jack cheese, spicy fried onions, and hot "Angry Sauce." (Perhaps the Whopper was so angry because it lost its life savings on Wall Street.)

According to some reviews at the time, the burger wasn't particularly spicy, but was still a step up from the original Whopper. Seth Rogen, on the other hand, said the burger made him sweat so much people thought he had a seizure (though this might have been exacerbated by his severe hangover). Although the burger was only available for a limited time, it captured a bit of a cult following. And now, it's headed back to one very specific market, to the delight of Burger King fans everywhere in Columbus, Ohio.

The Angry Whopper’s journey to Ohio

A quick search for "Angry Whopper" on Reddit shows several posts begging Burger King to bring it back, and the sandwich seems to make a reappearance every few years; it was available for a limited time in November 2012 and October 2013. In 2016, Burger King introduced a variant called the Angriest Whopper, which had hot sauce infused into its bright red bun. The last time the Angry Whopper was available was 2019, but the beloved burger is now making its post-COVID comeback. The catch? Much like Taco Bell's Baja Blast Gelato, it's only going to be available in one particular place.

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Burger King announced in a press release that due to "guest demand," the Angry Whopper will take up a limited-time residency in Columbus, Ohio—and in Columbus, Ohio only. Why Columbus? Was the demand particularly high among Ohio State students?

"The Angry Whopper was a huge hit with Burger King fans when it came to menus previously, so we decided to bring it to Columbus and test current relevance with guests," a Burger King spokesperson told The Takeout. "We are excited to see how Columbus locals and visitors react to the latest iteration of this spicy take on our flagship sandwich."

Columbus is frequently used as a test market, particularly for fast food. Many brands choose to test their products there before launching them more broadly. Why? Diversity, plain and simple. It's a large city, but it's also Middle America, and thanks to its plethora of colleges, it has young people from all over the world.

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"You have this interesting blend of a funky culture—creativity, diversity—and a corporate culture that really mix it up," Alex Fischer of the Columbus Partnership told CBS News in 2012. "And I think that's really what makes us a unique test bed, as opposed to being average."

So if the guinea pigs in Columbus don't care for the Angry Whopper, it might be years before fans nationwide will be able to sink their teeth into it again. Pressure's on, Buckeyes.

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