Reality Check: Sandwich Baguette Façon/McBaguette from McDonald's France
McDonald's in France has really great coffee, especially if you're American and forgot to make coffee on a Saturday morning before going shopping with two kids. What they do not have, at least at the McDo to which I went, are changing tables for little friends with dirty diapers, which is how I came to learn that our two-year-old is afraid of automatic hand dryers. Anyway. We saw a sign for the Sandwich Baguette Façon McDo (or McBaguette) and decided to give it a shot along with our usual three double lattes.
The sandwich is apparently McDo's attempt to increase their already large fast food market share to include principled older French people who would normally reject what they consider to be zee nourriture Américaine (bof!). It consists of a baguette tradition, romain lettuce, Emmental cheese, two burger patties, and a sauce based on moutarde à l'ancienne.
The burgette (can I do that?) comes in a paper sack just like the ones you get at a corner boulangerie when you order a jambon buerre or poulet crudité. Score one for authenticity.
The bread is a great surprise, and tastes like something you'd get at the aforementioned boulangerie. Light, not quite yielding crumb with a great crunchy exterior. The lettuce seemed fresh and was definitely not wilted, although there could have been more of it. Once slice of grocery store-grade Emmental per patty was nicely melted and had a nice tooth. The burger was standard McDo, a bit of iron-y beefiness to it. Not amazing, but not bad at all. The mustard sauce had a slight industrial sweetness that I couldn't place until my wife told me it was probably mayonnaise, which makes sense. It had a great complex spicy kick to it, and paired nicely with everything else.
All in all, I thought it was a decent "burger," but for the €5 (about $6.30) price tag, way too expensive for what it was. But my wife, who by being French and having high standards is the probable target audience here, said that "As a French person, I usually take off the top bun on my burgers because I don't think they really bring anything to the sandwich. That's not the case here; this was a very good sandwich."
About the author: Philip Lamb is a Drupal developer working in Paris, previously of New York City and Chicago, and originally of Arkansas. Since moving to France, whenever he gets homesick for something he figures out a way to make it.