Hardee's adds some heft at breakfast

ST. LOUIS Hardee's is breaking out the heavy artillery in the escalating quick-service breakfast wars with the rollout of the Monster Biscuit, an a.m. version of its popular Monster Thickburger oversized sandwich.

The new breakfast sandwich consists of four slices of ham, a sausage patty, three half-strips of bacon, a folded serving of scrambled egg, and two slices of cheese, piled atop Hardee's signature biscuits. The Monster Biscuit is selling for about $2.49, or as part of a combo that also includes hash browns and a drink for $3.89.

Hardee's is resorting to heft as many of its competitors scramble for attention in the morning with new breakfast products. McDonald's and Burger King, for instance, have both switched to branded super-premium coffees, and Starbucks is adding a line of egg sandwiches. Jack in the Box last week introduced a bacon-studded version of its Breakfast Jack.

Hardee's, which operates or franchises 1,923 restaurants, had experimented with a number of breakfast possibilities before settling an extension of its Monster over-sized burger line, according to executive vice president of marketing Brad Haley. "Ironically, the version of the sandwich that sold the best in our consumer tests was the one that had everything on it," he said in a statement.

It should not be surprising, he commented. "We found that a big part of the success of our Monster Thickburger a few years ago was the basic combination of meat and cheese...and more meat and more cheese."

The chain had not posted nutritional info on the Monster Biscuit on its website by presstime. Hardee's is a sister to the 1,079-unit Carl's Jr. chain and the 96-store La Salsa Mexican Grill group.