Market Report and McDonald’s Restaurant Review

Boulder County saw increases in sales volume of both single family homes and attached dwellings in December, up 8.6% and 1.1% over December 2013.  In the same time period, available home inventory fell 8.1% and attached dwellings 15.5%, indicating the inventory crunch continues, and buyer demand has not eased up proportionately to the reduced inventory in the off season.  Prices are higher in Boulder County than at any time in history, with sellers calling the shots.  The robust local economy is driving many to relocate to the area, and most experts predict more of the same in 2015.  That being said, people are still finding places to live with the right amount of persistence and determination, and having a great agent to navigate bidding wars or get you top dollar for your house is more important than ever. 

McDonald’s Restaurant Review

A few months ago when I read that the McDonald’s on 28th street was closing for a remodel, it occurred to me that I must have driven by those stately golden arches over a thousand times in my Boulder lifetime, and never gone in. Could McDonald’s in Boulder be like many of the other restaurants I have reviewed- a gem yet to be discovered or hidden from public awareness? Why have I never dropped in anyway? Snobbery? When I was a kid I loved McDonald’s, perhaps I let bad press and rumor get the best of me. When the makeover wrapped up and 28th street McD’s reopened for business, I resolved to give it a visit. 

As it turns out, McDonald’s is a neglected venue in Boulder. There are only two McDonald’s serving Boulder’s over 100 thousand souls compared to the national average of slightly over four per 100K. Last Wednesday at 11:30am there were only a few folks visible inside, but it just wouldn’t have been the full experience without including the Drive-Thru(sp), so that’s where the adventure began. The spartan modernist lanes (two!) were both empty and hip, sporting a sign “any lane, any time” between them. The sound at the mic was tinny but mostly clear and adequately loud. The voice asked “Welcome to McDonald’s, what can I make for you?” Make? “Spicy McChicken and a Diet Coke.” 

The Hot n’ Spicy McChicken Sandwich boasts a deep fried patty with a somewhat orange spicy batter that adds a slow, mild burn to the salty sweet flavor profile. The spice differentiated it from the other items we tried, but the overabundant mayonnaise unfortunately drowned its zesty potential. The Diet Coke was superb however, mysteriously better than other Diet Coke.  Smoother? More refreshing? Fountain soda is different everywhere and as it turns out McDonald’s is the gold standard by which all Coca Cola products should be judged.  The syrup, normally dispensed from plastic bags that can languish for days or weeks, is shipped straight from the…factory? in stainless steel tanks that connect directly to the fountain, ensuring the freshest taste possible. All the water and ice for McDonald’s beverages is reverse-osmosis filtered twice on site, and the soda is served to precise measurements of carbonation and temperature. 

Inside, the cheeseburger awaited. I scarfed them down in seconds as a youngster, and couldn’t wait to dive in.  Here it was moments before death: 

 

Not exactly an inspiring view, but the diced onions, pickles and mustard offered a little depth, and one could detect beef, all for $1.00.  For price/satisfaction, I recommend ponying up $1.59 for the double. The McNuggets stood out for crispy texture, but a bite of a Big Mac did not change the overall flavor much - salty, sweet, and then an accent of chicken or onion, beef or pickle.  Humans obviously love this magic formula, as McDonald’s serves it up to over 62,000,000 people globally every single day at unbelievably low prices, making it as much about the value as the food itself. 

McDonald’s, 1800 28th street, Boulder, CO (720) 352-5825