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April 12, 2018

"Unfrozen" Will Be The Next Disney Movie

I've sampled enough unfrozen, HOTG sandwiches to have some opinions in my role as 
a McDonald's customer.

Is it a better product? ... Sometimes.

As I consumed the first few QPCs I was struck with the thought, "For 45 years McDonald's
has been over-cooking all those millions of quarter pound patties".

I've sampled about 40 sandwiches over the past few months and my impressions are:

* In a Quarter Pound with Cheese it's better than frozen but only when everything is 
   done perfectly.

That's because the QPC is a pretty simple sandwich.

 * In the Signature Sandwiches the difference in meat patties is unnoticeable. There is so much going on in each of those sandwiches, so many flavors, so many textures that the actual meat patty gets lost in the battle. This lack of difference will become even more noticeable as the builds become more exotic, Angus flavoring, etc.

* One in five patties were pink enough to have failed previous food safety standards. Now, 
don't get me wrong, I like them that way. As a McDonald's Operator I'd often cook a couple 
of quarter pound patties as a low carb, high protein lunch. They were quite pink in the center and I would have never served them to a customer.

However, McDonald's has been overcooking beef patties for so many decades McDonald's customers don't know what a "medium" patty looks like. I foresee many returned sandwiches.

* I was served a few sandwiches that were dripping with fat (very unusual at McDonald's). And, about a third of the sandwiches did not have the brown wrapper, just the box and
the sandwich. That wrapper is essential, especially with the Signature sandwiches and if 
the sandwich is eaten on the road.

* There is a perceptible slowing of service times at the stores I visit regularly. I'm seeing 
more cars pulled to the side and more long waits at the presentation window. Since I'm 
not in the kitchen I can't tell what's holding things up or if this slow down is related to 
HOTG. It might be the nationwide staffing problems. Maybe it's the three patty thing.

Will this change increase sales at McDonald's? Will it be worth the hassles and risks? I'm 
sure there will be a lot of trial when the advertising begins but only time will tell if it 
will build sales.

Meanwhile, Wendy's and other competitors will continue to bark about frozen beef at McDonald's. Unfrozen quarter patties will not solve that problem.


Richard Adams said...

I can hear it now - "you're going to the wrong stores". Not true, unless I'm traveling I don't spend my time and money at poorly run McDonald's. I have three favorite stores that have a history of running well and are completely up to date. There's nothing to learn in a poorly run McDonald's.

Anonymous said...

The same would apply to poorly run stores which are currently serving the traditional frozen 10:1 and quarter pound patties. As the old saying goes, "you cannot resuscitate a dead horse by breathing into it's mouth". I suspect the observation warrants more and longer analysis and consideration before we sweep the subject aside. the frozen concept (neat and fries) have been a long-standing tradition.