McDonald’s

A McDonald’s in Australia

Wasn’t going to post again this evening but the McDonald’s article at the Mail, where some employee spilled the beans ended up not making the place look too bad at all, especially on hygiene.

Worst places I’ve eaten fast food?

1. Wimpy in Dover in 1980. I was travelling to Germany on a tour and my one night in Paris was spent retching.

2. Burger King in Lewisham in the mid 90s. Let’s just say a certain demographic was overrepresented on the staff – the place was filthy, from tables to floor, though admittedly sickness did not follow. Contrast that to the BK at Charing Cross, which didn’t seem so bad.

3. McDonald’s in maybe 1992 [a bit hazy exactly when] just north of the Tijuana border on the hilly side of the road. Those burgers were dripping with grease – queaziness producing.

Thought I’d be sick in Russia on the stolovaya food but though it was not all that nice to look at at times, I was never ill from it. I’ve eaten McDonald’s in every country in the world I’ve been and it’s been fine in general.

And you?

15 Responses to “McDonald’s”

  1. CherryPie June 29, 2012 at 23:47 Permalink

    McDonald’s is a large corporate entity so it would have score well on hygiene. It is in the spotlight!

    But are its offerings really classed as food?

    And I do seriously wonder about your following of the Daily Mail. It is riddled with biased inaccurate reports. I don’t read it but I converse regularly with someone who does.

    But there again I don’t read any of the newspapers because they are all as bad as each other!!!

    Sorry I got sidetracked…

    The worst place I ever encountered was a food outlet at Birmingham station. Luckily I had only gone in for a cup of tea before catching the train. The service was a little sloppy. Whilst drinking my tea the cleaner was sweeping up the floor debris into the corner next to me, then cleaning up the tables and putting any food items that might be half serviceable back into service for the next victim through the outlet!!

    I was there with my Mum, we used to travel to Birmingham regularly. We NEVER went back to that place….

  2. James Higham June 29, 2012 at 23:55 Permalink

    And I do seriously wonder about your following of the Daily Mail. It is riddled with biased inaccurate reports. I don’t read it but I converse regularly with someone who does.

    I think I take Rossa’s view – it’s a rag throwing up some interesting topics to explore. I don’t know anyone who takes it as gospel but its human interest stories have sometimes been firsts. Its photos are second to none, except maybe yours, Cherie.

  3. Pavlov's Cat June 30, 2012 at 00:27 Permalink

    I can’t say I’ve ever had a duff Big Mac, where ever in the world I’ve had one. I worried about the ones in Egypt before I had one , but it was a Big Mac .

    And there’s the thing. it’s a very American thing that it must be the same where ever you are. It even extends to building design, a Holiday Inn in Tokyo or Ulan Bator has the same layout as one in the USA . no surprises.

    Some may say this is a ‘bad thing’ but I have to say , on my travels, when being overwhelmed by a new place, the fact that I could go and get a ‘Big Mac’ and it tasted exactly the same as one I could get on Bexleyheath Broadway was a comfort.

    The exception is Starbucks , no matter where in the world you go, the coffee still tastes like crap (IMHO)

  4. richard June 30, 2012 at 01:46 Permalink

    I have been informed by a colleague who is a beef farmer that McDonalds use carcasses of high quality. The “supersize me” problems which emerge from their meals (which result largely from the sugary drinks imo) have nothing to do with the meat. I ate a Burgerking at Belfast International Airport which caused severe diahrumpus (like the usual shits but very noisy) although I too have never had a bad Big Mac.

  5. Bill Quango MP June 30, 2012 at 02:18 Permalink

    Wimpy in Birmingham. Looked like a dive and it was. Cafe on the A303a ? near exeter, can’t remember the name .Joe’s cafe or something. All the drink bottles were 2+ years out of date.

    As for Mcd’s. Had one yesterday. Tastes great but felt greasy going down the tubes.

    For burgers can’t beat the late night burger van. Burger, bacon, bap, egg, sauce and cheese from surbiton station. Guaranteed to cure the munchies.

  6. Edwin Greenwood June 30, 2012 at 02:41 Permalink

    My single most memorably unpleasant fast-food experience was a visit to the kebab shop in Abbey Wood in 1979 which was followed by three days ensconced more-or-less permanently “on the throne” and a very, very sore arse.

    As to Maccy D’s, while their burgers can sometimes taste like flavoured cardboard when they have been sitting in the tray too long, I have never actually been made ill by one. A bit like Wetherspoon’s, McDonalds are rarely inspiring but are consistent and generally safe. Which, given that many of their outlets are franchises, is a respectable achievement.

  7. James Higham June 30, 2012 at 05:58 Permalink

    Thanks, chaps.

  8. Geoffrey S June 30, 2012 at 08:38 Permalink

    There’s a word, gopping.

  9. dearieme June 30, 2012 at 10:52 Permalink

    A holiday in Brittany when one or other of us was vomiting or skittering almost every day.

  10. Rossa June 30, 2012 at 14:25 Permalink

    Worked for McDs for 6 months in the late 70s in London’s Regent St and it was my first intro to how the Americans ran a business. Not a franchise in the UK at this stage. Each shift we were rotated to a different station so one day I could be grilling burgers, another clearing tables and cleaning duties. We all had to learn each aspect of the business and after 6 months could be fast tracked into their management scheme. Pay rises were also based on results so the better the job you did the greater the reward. Very egalitarian and meritocratic.

    As I also worked as a pastry chef during the day at a good restaurant, I could compare the 2 and still feel that McDs were by far the better employer and offered a good career for those who wanted it. Had a Big Mac for my meal 2-3 times a week and certainly did me no harm. And while not the best I’d ever tasted it was far better than most take away food around in those days. Never had any problems with it. Only takeaway that did me in was fish and chips from Harry Ramsdens in Yorkshire. Couldn’t get off the sofa for 3 days and couldn’t even keep water down.

    If I’d stayed in London I would have taken on the management training offered to me, but funnily enough I was headed to the States for a 3 month road trip instead. And apart from ‘biscuits’ (scones to us Brits) and gravy the one McD I visited there was exactly the same as the one in London.

  11. wiggiatlarge June 30, 2012 at 17:24 Permalink

    Never been able to “get” the Big Mac thing, rubbish buns and cheese that looks and tastes like a five day old Kraft slice that’s been out in the sun, but the worst quick food has to be for me a meal – if you could call it that – at an early Granada service station on the M1, a hot self service meal that was all tepid , glazed where it had been under the warming lights to long and when put on the plate the constituents merged into one glutinous whole, I didn’t use a service station after that for years.

  12. James Higham June 30, 2012 at 20:04 Permalink

    Again, thanks chaps and chapess.

  13. Andrew July 1, 2012 at 02:09 Permalink

    McDonalds’ coffee machinery makes very good coffee. I have many a lovely latte there (they use healthy semi-skimmed milk too, and I better not mention here that it is “organic” – oops, I did – though as an organic chemist I do wonder what “inorganic” milk would be made of… boron? cobalt?). With free wifi and sockets available to plug a laptop into, I do some of my best work in McDonalds. Have even been known to indulge in a Mayo Chicken off the Saver menu at 99p. Hard to criticise that.

  14. James Higham July 1, 2012 at 17:48 Permalink

    Yes – their coffee is not bad, especially at an airport in the middle of the night.

  15. Steve Hayes July 1, 2012 at 19:03 Permalink

    The first time I ate a MacDonalds was in Hong Kong, and the second in Moscow. At that time we didn’t have them in South Africa and I was curious to know how they compared with Wimpy.

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