Why Isn’t This New McDonald’s Location Serving Up Any Burgers Or Fries?

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By Cooking Panda

I feel like this is the fast-food version of those reductive teen movies, in which a shy, intelligent girl whips off her glasses and suddenly every cool jock in school recognizes her for what she truly is — hot — and they ride off into the football field (er… sunset), vowing never to do stupid things like read or learn ever again.

Let me explain.

McDonald’s is having an identity crisis. It just opened up a new location in Paris, France, and all of the core elements that make the chain what it is — its signature burgers (like the McDouble or the Quarter Pounder, for instance), its french fries (those golden arches aren’t just a conceptual design!), and its McNuggets — are nowhere to be seen.

Grub Street reports that inside the new location, which is called Le Figaro, “nothing indicates that this restaurant belongs to the American chain.”

So what is the point? It’s not as though McDonald’s is struggling in France. According to Eater, the chain has more than 1,300 franchised stores across the country, rendering it the company’s second most profitable market (America is the first).

If you’re looking for conclusive answers, the truth is that nobody really knows why, exactly, the Parisian branch is so thoroughly overhauling a concept it already knows works. Perhaps the chain is hoping to draw in some new clientele; perhaps this is a glimpse into what the future of all McDonald’s locations hold. Only time will tell.

For now, if you’re in Paris and are interested in checking the new location out, the McDonald’s in question will be open every day from 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., and serving up coffee with freshly ground beans, teas, soups, macarons, and sandwiches.

Sources: Grub Street, Eater / Photo Source: Le Macaron Bleu

Tags: burgers, concept restaurant, fries, mcdonald's, Paris
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Paris Bakeries Recreate Gluten-Free Offerings Of French Classics

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By Cooking Panda

Bakeries in Paris have jumped on the gluten-free train.

Helmut Newcake, the first gluten-free bakery in the French capital, opened in 2011. Marie Tagliaferro, who was diagnosed with celiac disease as a 20-year-old student in pastry school, wanted to provide gluten-free French treats for everyone to enjoy, whether they have an intolerance to gluten or not, according to the establishment’s official website, written in French.

“In the world of pastry, gluten-free is coming into its own,” she said, as reported by Financial Review.

The shop, which is located less than 10 minutes away from the Galeries Lafayette in the 9th Arrondissement, has received much praise for its variety of French classical treats that are virtually indistinguishable from those of typical Parisian bakeries. Along with her husband, Francois, the duo provides gluten-free pastries and cakes to various establishments throughout the area.

Near the famous Louvre, French baker Eric Kayser of La Maison Kayser started to provide gluten-free bread and treats as many customers were yearning for a gluten-free alternative. It took 18 months of experimentation in order to develop a line of gluten-free offerings that were worthy to be served in his establishment.

“For a bakery it’s disturbing to make gluten-free bread,” explained Elodie de Montbron of La Maison Kayser. “It’s more like a cake dough than a bread dough.”

At various Parisian bakeries, starches, preservatives, and food-grade gums are not used to create gluten-free offerings, unlike similar products found in the United States. Therefore, there is one French delicacy that has proven too challenging to duplicate: the croissant.

“You can’t try to copy everything,” said de Montbron.

Sources: Financial Review, Helmut Newcake / Photo credit: Helmut Newcake

Tags: Eric Kayser, gluten-free, Helmut Newcake, La Maison Kayser, Paris
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