Wendy’s is investing $200 million on a return to Japan after leaving the country in 2009, according to Bloomberg.
The signature burger of this venture is a $16 Foie Gras Rossini, aka the Premium Sandwich.
Judging from the picture below it features the traditional square beef patty topped with foie gras topped with perhaps truffle butter. The word Rossini refers to Tournedos Rossini, a French dish involving filet mignon and foie gras that was purportedly created for the gourmand Italian composer Gioachino Rossini.
The burger and other upscale dishes will sell in Tokyo’s Omotesando luxury shopping district at the first of 100 targeted stores.
Foie gras is made from the liver of a goose or duck that has been force fed to make it fat. Presumably this dish would not work in America, where the average person doesn’t like the sound of goose liver pate, and where animal rights groups are outraged by the dish, leading to several state bans. In Japan, however, people who have the stomach and the conscience to eat raw fish and whale meat can probably handle foie gras.
McDonald’s has already shown the value of dramatic localization around the world. Still Wendy’s is taking rebranding to a new level.