Quick-Serve Ads Vs. Reality: Panera Roasted Turkey And Cranberry Sandwich

Anderson tried a seasonal offering at Panera, the Roasted Turkey and Cranberry sandwich. The promotional photos made it look appetizing, but the sandwich that ended up on Anderson’s plate wasn’t. We know that speed is really important at Panera, and maybe this is just a hastily-assembled meal. Anderson decided to throw it away, leave the Panera, and then complain online. This plan was somewhat flawed.

File this one under “looked yummy in the marketing photo but yucky on the plate.”

The Panera Roasted Turkey and Cranberry sandwich is their latest and greatest promoted sandwich. I ordered one based on the photo next to the register (mistake) and what I got was a flat, limp sandwich with a gelatinous turkey “meat” product slathered on it. I just tossed it out and ate my soup instead, but as a social media experiment I sent the same photos to Panera’s official Facebook page. Needless to say their response was silence.

Photo of sign at the Panera Store

Shot of my sandwich at the same angle

What was inside the sandwich

Here’s what we don’t really understand, though. From the photo background, it looks like the pictures of the sandwich were taken while still inside the Panera. Why is it easier to take a series of photographs–even if it’s with a cellphone–and post them on Panera’s Facebook wall than it is to take the sandwich up to the counter, ask for the manager, and declare the sandwich inedible? Taking pictures is a lot less confrontational, but complaining on Facebook or even on Consumerist well after the fact isn’t going to get you a replacement sandwich.