Tuesday, January 8, 2008


About a month or so ago we all noticed McDonald's offering their new McLatte's and they were so desperate to get us to try it they were giving them away free (on Mondays I think). They also had lots of free coupons in the market.

Me, I'm not too snobby on the coffee front. I like Starbucks, I like Caribou but mostly I'll drink my own coffee made in my own pot from my own kitchen counter. I really like the independent shops with barristas with lots of tats and piercings. Make this sojoco guy feel a little edgey and crazy. I hit the coffee shop probably once a week and home and everyday when I travel.

I marvel at how we all willingly pay $4 for a Starbucks. I think it is great we've come so far as a country to appreciate such things. But like some, probably not many, I like to save a buck when I can. My car is paid for, I like to fix things at the house myself, I cut my own lawn. Cutting your own lawn in sojoco is actually saying something because more than half my neighbors don't. But I digress.......anyway my point is I don't mind saving money especially if the market can deliver something as good for less. That said there are several problems with the McLatte.

First, and foremost they are horrible. I mean they are really bad. I went through the drive through in my gas guzzling SUV for a snack.....no comments please........and was given one with my order.......gratis. I remembered when they decided to roll with their premium blend I was pretty enthused because their old coffee was really undrinkable. I was thinking they would upgrade to Dunkin Donuts level and life would be good enough when you needed something in a hurry or stay awake after a ......uh, night out. Wrong. It wasn't much better at all. I was devastated. Well, not devastated but perplexed. How could Oakbrook, Illinois get it so wrong on something so easy? So, given what I learned about the previous attempt with "premium coffee" I wasn't optimistic about the McLatte but since it was free I knew I needed to give it try. Again, really bad. Now that is a marketing plan gone really bad. I didn't even pay for it once and know I'll never buy it again. For the technical stuff: It was really watery and it didn't have much flavor.

Second, I don't really trust them. If I liked the McLatte and was tempted I'd want to know how they make it. See, I grabbed those QT coffee drinks on occassion and they tasted good.....too good if you know what I mean so I decided to see what was in them. Of course loads of sugar and all from a powdered bag. So I had to ditch those quickly. QT's regular cup of coffee is pretty okay though. I also like Sonic coffee. I suspect that the McLatte's ingredients are suspect or they'd brag about them. I tasted quite a bit of sugar in mine as well. Don't we have enough overweight people? Loads of sugar is bad enough but I'm nervous about what else is in there. That's the thing about the coffee shop. You can tell them you want a simple Venti latte with an extra shot, skim milk and a shake of cinnamon on top and you'll get it and you know what's in it.

I guess we are a test market in Kansas City which I don't know what that says about us. I saw a story on the national morning news about it which got me thinking about it. All I can say is to anyone who hasn't already had a free one or someone from out of town reading don't bother. If you like their coffee you might like the McLatte. The news report said they would be on average 60 cents cheaper than Starbucks. That is a crime. If McDonalds can get people to pay that much for that crap........ Really what does it say about KC that we are the test market? Give it to Mikey, he'll eat anything? We have money but we aren't as sophisticated as Chicago or Seattle when it comes to coffee? Are we the new Peoria...as in how does it play in Peoria?

My recommendation........save the rest of the country from McLatte.....vote no.

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