Daily Archives: 12, September 2011

What? No Royale with Cheese?

You might have heard the news last week that McDonald’s in the UK will now display calorie counts on their menu items.

Well, it kind of begs the question: What’s McDonald’s in the UK like?

I should begin by saying that I am no fan of the chain but I am inherently fascinated by the way that McDonald’s gears its menu to different locales.

In Hawaii, they serve ramen noodles (known as “saimin”) and Spam musubi (basically a wedge of rice with Spam on top). In India, they serve a veggie burger called a McAloo Tikki. And who could forget that classic scene in Pulp Fiction, when John Travolta’s character explains to Samuel L. Jackson’s character that a Quarter Pounder in France is called a Royale with Cheese?

Well, in England, a Quarter Pounder is a Quarter Pounder. A Big Mac is a Big Mac. And French fries are called French fries, not chips, which is kind of puzzling.

Actually, it’s pretty disappointing how similar their menu is to ours. Yes, they do have a little regional flair in their breakfast menu – namely, a traditional Bacon Roll made with British bacon, Heinz tomato sauce or brown sauce. And they have something called a Chicken Legend, which is basically our crispy chicken sandwich with lettuce, mayo or tomato salsa on a soft, white bakehouse roll. For dessert, they have a Belgian Bliss Brownie, made from real Belgian chocolate. I’ll give them 5/10 for originality.

Lastly, they don’t have a dollar menu or a pound menu. They have a “Saver” Menu. I’m thinking that pounds are the last thing people want to think about at McDonald’s … despite the fact that calories are now listed on their menu.