Don't freak out, just because Arby's and El Pollo Loco's pictures are together does not mean they are merging. I just happened to update both menus on the same day. It is always interesting going through the menu updates, especially when some time has elapsed since the last revision. In both of the above cases, the update today replaces the last version dated 10/30/2009.
What's changed in the last 22 months? Nothing earth-shaking. Arby's dumped popcorn chicken in favor of "Prime-cut Chicken Tenders." El Pollo Loco has a bunch of upgraded burritos (I still miss the Chicken Lover's Burrito) and new "Premium" sides. More dramatic is the price increases between the two chains for the same time period.
Arby's should be commended for keeping a reign on price increases. In fact, the average menu item only went up about 10 cents. Some items, like the Medium and Large Beef & Cheddars, didn't go up at all.
On the flip side, I was shocked to see that El Pollo Loco, which makes some outstanding food, showed a full $1 price jump for all of their main items (2pc, 3pc and 4pc meals.) Wow. That, plus the fact that some of their standard sides (like the BBQ black beans & veggies) were somehow magically promoted to "premium" is enough to earn a stern finger-wagging from me.
Check out the Arby's and El Pollo Loco menus and add your comments on the bottom of each page. And if you think 22 months is a long time for me to get around to updating these menus, you can always contribute updates yourself and join in on the fun!