McDonald's China launches new coriander-flavoured ice cream sundae to widespread dismay

Photos of the cilantro sundae shared to Twitter
Few things in life are as divisive and controversial as politics or religion, but coriander is definitely up there. Photo credit: Twitter

Few things in life are as divisive and controversial as politics or religion, but coriander is definitely up there.

The humble herb, although popular in many a kitchen and several cuisines, is not universally appreciated. Many compare the taste of coriander - also referred to as cilantro by our American counterparts - to soap. People's passionate hatred of the herb has even inspired a slew of memes and a Facebook community, 'I Hate Coriander', which is liked by almost 300,000 people.

And now, fast-food giant McDonald's is capitalising off the controversy with its latest creation, the 'Cilantro Sundae'. 

The lurid green ice cream, which is topped with dried coriander flakes and a coriander-flavoured syrup, was launched in China on Monday (local time) to widespread dismay on social media. 

"I'm glad I live on the other side of the planet, I want that thing as far away from me as possible," one man said.

"I thought someone posted some plant pictures [until] I actually realised they're McDonald's coriander sundaes," another tweeted.

"Mmm, soapy sundaes! What a delight," another said sarcastically, while a fourth disparaged the ice cream as "a real crime against humanity".

However, fans of the herb appear to be thrilled by the new addition, with some calling for McDonald's to introduce the limited-edition item to other international branches.

"When is [the] coriander sundae ice cream coming to Singapore? Pretty please," one woman asked, while another said coriander is one of her "favourite things".

"I would definitely give it a go," she said.

According to the online menu for McDonald's China, the dessert costs 6.6 yuan (about NZ$1.55) and appears to only be available from February 21 until February 25 - or while stocks last.

"The 6.6 yuan fragrant coriander [sundae]... is limited in quantity, first-come, first-served, while stocks last," says a rough translation on the webpage. 

McDonald's China cilantro sundae promotional images
The sundae has prompted dismay and division online. Photo credit: McDonald's China

Hardcore fans of the herb have been getting in quick and sharing their thoughts on the sundae on social media, with one woman comparing the taste to "lime and mint".

Meanwhile, it appears McDonald's Thailand is giving the Chinese franchise a run for its money, with one man sharing a photo of a chilli pork sundae supposedly available on the Thai menu.

"McDonald's Thailand would like to say hello," he joked.