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Jun 24, 2007 04:25 AM

McD's -- Can I Get a Fresh-Grilled Burger?

I was about to post on the McDonalds vs. BK vs. Wendy's thread. But I realized my comment may be obsolete. I like the McD's double-cheeseburger for a buck. I'll confess I stop and chow one every few weeks. The huge drink special McD's has been running also stocks me for a day of errands, and even then I end up tossing most of it.

I always special order my burger at McDonald's. I don't like mustard. I don't want an old sandwich that has sat under a heat lamp. So I order my double-cheeseburger without mustard and get a reasonably hot, newly assembled sandwich that has some signs of going through a microwave. A few years ago, I had a longer wait but I got freshly grilled patties. Now I understand and have resigned myself to the procedure that they all are premade and later assembled and re-warmed. Even the bun seems steamed rather than grilled and crisped.

Does anyone know if it is possible to somehow order a freshly grilled McD's double cheeseburger? I'm willing to wait. Is there a standard figure for a tip/bribe?

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  1. I didn't think that they microwaved anything at McDonald's, but that may have changed . At Buger King, they used to nuke almost everything, but they may also have changed,

    1. In all my 35 years, I can safely say I don't think I've ever had a "crisped" bun at McD's. Have I missed out on something?

      6 Replies
      1. re: irishnyc

        I’ll call your 35 years and raise it to 48 years... It seems to me you used to get a toasted bun at BK, but I can’t remember that ever being the case at McDs. In fact, I think the toasted bun was a point of advertising for BK, something that made them different.

        Back to the OPs question, it did use to be that if you special ordered something, you had a better chance of getting it freshly made, (or what passes for freshly made in the fast food world...) I had one friend tell me years ago that he would order his burgers “hold the microwave”, and that it worked. Never tried it myself. But I don’t think there’s anyway around getting reheated c--p now. Although stuff always “seems” to taste more fresh at Wendys.

        Uncle Ira

        1. re: Uncle Ira

          McDonald's used to toast all of their buns except for the ones used in the Filet-O-Fish (which was steamed) into the early '90s, so both of you have probably eaten them this way but just didn't realize it. I thought that they had resumed the practice of toasting instead of steaming, but I have not eaten there in a while so couldn't tell you if that is true.

          1. re: PommeDeGuerre

            I worked at McD's for 6 years in the mid 80's and still bear a scar across the back of my right wrist from a Big Mac Toaster. It was a bizarre three level thing, where the all three sections of bun were toasted simultaneously. So, yeah, the buns were toasted. But it doesn't rival the scar on the inside of my right forearm from pulling a fresh pan of biscuits out of the McD's mini oven. That one was nasty.

            But back to the original point. I agree, that at some point in the 90's it seemed that McD's completely changed their prep methods, and began cooking huge numbers of patties and just assembling whatever was needed instead of cooking a fresh patty for special orders. But, if you're lucky, if you order fries no salt, they might still have to drop a new basket of fries, thus guaranteeing what you get is fresh and hot (and you can salt them yourselves at the table). But don't tell them you heard that from me....

            1. re: OrganicGal

              Thanks, OrganicGal, your secret will be safe with me. Did you go organic because of or in spite of your McD's tenure? I appreciate the no-salt hint, but I never have a problem with fresh fries with the heavy turnover -- always hot when first served.

              I can only laugh when I think of the reactions behind the screen if I order my double-cheese without mustard and "medium rare on the burgers" thru the drive-thru microphone or at the window. Could the shock and awe possibly get them to throw a couple of fresh patties on the grill or would they just search the mounds of beef discs for a couple that most seemed to fit?

              1. re: OrganicGal

                I worked at McD's until 1997. Basically it got to the point that every other order was a 'special' order, this slowed things down so badly that a new prep system was devised to handle all special orders and still get people in and out in a reasonable time.

                Ironic, no?? People started to make special requests in order to get a higher quality product, it jammed the system and the response was that everyone gets crap.

                1. re: chris in illinois

                  Ah, the light goes on...once people learn how to work the system, the system changes. But can you still order fries no salt to get fresh fries?

                  I became Organic Gal about 5 years post-McD's...the long story involves a search for cardamom pods in 1989, but the short story is I've been working in the organic industry (I'm current a farm and food processing plant inspector).

        2. I was under the impression, based on visual inspection, that McDonald's (and Burger King) locations no longer had grills of any sort -- they now seem to take pre-cooked patties and microwave them. Am I wrong?

          1 Reply
          1. re: Bill on Capitol Hill

            I think you might be on to something here. I usually do the drive through thing, but when I do happen to go inside I’ve seen the same thing you’re talking about.