Late Breakfast

McDonaldsMcDonald’s is looking at making some changes, including the possibility of all-day breakfast:

When asked whether there was potential for McDonald’s to serve breakfast all day, Thompson replied: “Yes, we would consider it. We have the focus on our existing menu, but we have looked at breakfast across the day. We have it in some markets around the world.”

He added that the McDonald’s has looked at some “innovative ways” to expand breakfast hours for customers. “I think we’ll be seeing some of those things in the near future,” Thompson.

The company is also experimenting with delivery services in in some countries “in a big way,” as well as in densely populated areas in the U.S. Thompson said that “delivery is a big, big opportunity, particularly in areas where you don’t have drive-throughs.”

I saw this via OTB, which misleadingly suggested that all-day breakfast is going to happen. I didn’t get that impression, myself.

McDonald’s definitely loses business by ending breakfast at 10:30. A lot of people, including myself, aren’t really ready to go out until that 10:30-11 range. So when I am in the mood for a breakfast sandwich of a non-homemade breakfast burrito, I end up elsewhere. Taco John’s and Safeway are the late options here. Elsewhere, it’s Sonic. Or Jack-in-the-Box. JitB actually serves breakfast non-stop. Their offerings aren’t quite as good as McDonald’s, and they’re unhealthier, but the all-day thing is huge. There are no Jacks near where I am. At all. Not in Callie, not in Redstone, not even in Summit.

If Jack can do it, I don’t know why McD can’t.

While I’m on the subject, a couple of McDonald’s stories:

As it happens, I went there for breakfast just last week. You know how sometimes you can just tell that your order is about to be messed up? You don’t have anything solid with which you can confront them about it, but you just know. My tip-off came when the guy asked me to confirm that I wanted egg on my Sausage McMuffin With Egg. It’s right there in the title. Why would he ask that? Then I saw in the order screen “Add Egg.” So I knew that something was wrong. It turned out that he had missed the “Sausage” part. So I got a McMuffin with just egg on it.

Back when Clancy was interviewing for the job in Queenland, I saw something that I had thought had gone the way of [something really tasty that doesn’t exist anymore]. The McBagel. I was huge into McBagel’s when I was younger and never quite forgave the McGriddle for pushing it off the breakfast menu. Did they bring the McBagel back, I wondered, or is it a regional thing? I didn’t know (I think the latter), but I had to get one. Unfortunately, it didn’t end up happening.

It would have happened if they were open until 11.

Will Truman

Will Truman is the Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. He is also on Twitter.


  1. I’ve never heard of the McBagel. I.m almost afraid to ask what it was.

    • It’s what you think it is. The basics on a bagel. Though they have a “steak & onion” variant, which is really good.

      Back home, they killed it back when the McGriddle came out, thus my grudge against the latter. But apparently they still sell it back east. And maybe never sold it out west?

      • Here in the NYC DMA, we gloriously have both. The steak/onion/cheese on a bagel is very good and very reasonably priced.

        • Downtown Metro Area?

          The only DMA I know is Direct Memory Access,

          • Designated Market Area, as defined by Nielsen Media Research.

            If you get CBS2, NBC4, FOX5, and ABC7, you live in the NYC DMA.

      • The best bagels are from New York and allegedly Montreal. No other place compares though some hipster-Jews are trying to create NYC-worthy Bagels in the Bay Area.

        Good bagels are boiled, not baked. The boiling process requires old, bulky and expensive machinery though.

        • i don’t know if a vat of boiling water with some lye in it is particularly bulky as compared to the proper proofing time, which might be more of an issue. also the rest of america is mostly fine with lenders style nonsense, so why bother?

        • Is there any speculation that the NYC water quality itself may be a factor? I have heard it posited that may be a factor in the flavor/consistency of NY-style pizza crust.

  2. Stopping breakfast at 10:30 is just plain foolish and loses McDonalds money. The opportunity costs here, extrapolated to a national scale, are..well, probably stunning.

    I suppose offering breakfast items and lunch items simultaneously might require new equipment or a different organization of work space (which may be why it hasn’t been done yet), but these should not be insurmountable odds.

    At my undergraduate college, the McD in the student union served breakfast until 11:00 on M-F, and until 1:00 on Saturday and Sunday. The local franchise knew its customer base. Somedays, 10:30 is just not going to happen.

    • I read an article a while back that running it simultaneously would require different organization of work space. I seriously think it would be worth it, though.

      • It is this. They don’t have room for both meals at the same time. They have considered doing it with a small portable griddle to have breakfast go on a bit longer. The thing about McDs is that their scale is a blessing and a curse. Changes to stuff like that has to be really well thought out and considered because of how optimized their operations and layouts are. Stuff there is timed to the second. For example, one of the reasons they didn’t accept credit cards for so long was that the difficulty of training some kid who’s getting yelled at for a declined card.

        • Can’t they just find someone who used to work at Jack-in-the-Box and ask them how they do it?

          Anyway, that they don’t go to breakfast all day doesn’t surprise me. But the 10:30 really does. Do people really want hamburgers at 10:45?

          Along the lines of what you are saying, IIRC McDonald’s was one of the last ones to go all make-when-you-order rather than keeping a bunch pre-made under a heat lamp.

          • Also it’s likely a separate training for making bfast and everything else. If a kid isn’t going to work morning, they might not get that training.

          • Back at the one I worked at, many years ago, they wanted everybody to know the full menu regardless of when they planned to work, because shifts change (often with little notice).

          • “…Do people really want hamburgers at 10:45?”
            Have you ever been hungover?

          • hamburgers in the morning….You need to be introduced to the magic that is White Castle. Those from the South likely know the WC follower Krystle, which is also good.

          • “magic”? “good”?

            No wonder we can’t reach any understanding politically…we don’t even agree on what words mean. 😉

          • My guess is that Jack in the Box is not the finely-tuned, well-oiled machine McD’s is. Literally shaving a couple of seconds off of average order time has literally multi-million dollar impacts.

            I’ve had a few times when I wanted a burger and the breakfast menu was all they had. However, this usually happens at airports when my clock is all kinds of messed up or when I’m hungover.

    • Perhaps not bagel shops that’ll put bacon and pork sausage on them.

    • sadly, tragically, bagel shops are a regional phenomena for people in a certain bubble. Much of the nation doesn’t know a bagel from a bumbershoot.

        • i once met a woman from ohio who insisted it was pronounced “bag-uls” rather than “bay-gels”. she insisted it made more sense that way. i tried explaining how she was a 9.11 truther for bagels but she insisted that bread don’t boil.

          • It’s a Midwestern pronunciation thing. My Minnesotan wife and her family cannot pronounce “bagel” properly. Nor the word “vague”. The TV show “Community” character Britta also does this.

          • Meanwhile, some out here people pronounce “bag” in such a way that it rhymes with “vague.”

            And “flag.” Even the “Ag” in “Aggies.”

          • How do they say vagina?

            Who knows? Who says “vagina” outside of a doctor’s office or sixth-grade classroom?

      • Growing up just outside New York, I remember being confused as a child when visiting Boston and seeing a sign for “New York style pizza”. The idea that there were different styles of pizza and that not all pizza was as delicious as New York pizza was a real shock. And when I eventually spent 7 out of 9 years living in Boston and DC, I realized just how deprived and tortured the rest of our nation is.

  3. I can remember being told that at 11:00 am the cook didn’t know how to make a sausage McMuffin. “Bullshit,” said I. “Egg. Sausage. Cheese. On the muffin. It can’t be THAT hard.” “But what if the yolk comes out all gooey?” was the objection. “SCORE!” I said. “I can special order the egg over soft?”

    You can’t special order the egg over soft, it turns out, at least not in Culver City. The kid making the food had no fishing clue what “over soft” even meant.

    • I’ve never heard of “over soft”… is that like “over easy”?

      Clancy and I are at odds with our eggs. She likes them dry as all get-out. I want them just cooked enough to be (mostly) solid. Gooey is better.

      • I think this is one of those times where opposites got screwy.

        Over easy is runny. Over hard is firm and cooked through. Hard is the opposite of easy. But soft is the opposite of hard. So, by the transitive property (I think?) you get over soft and over easy meaning the same thing.

        Similarly, you have the phrase “Bud Heavy”… which is regular Budweiser but denotes it from “Bud Light”.

        • Antyonmyity has a kind of an anti-transitive property. If it were transitive, then that would mean that if A and B were antonyms and B and C were antonyms, then A and C would also be antonyms. But the opposite is true: A and C are synonyms. I don’t know what you’d call this type of property.

          Ah. Here’s the actual definition of antitransitivity: Given an antitransitive property expressed by #, if A # B and B # C, then it cannot be the case that A # C. That’s a weaker version of the property exhibited by antonymity, which is that if A # B and B # C, then the relationship between A and C must be the opposite of #. I’m not sure if the idea of the opposite of a relationship can be easily formalized, though.

        • Dear Kazzy, Mike, and Brandon:

          Thanks a bunch. Because of this little digression, I just spent half an hour reading about the properties of relations on Wikipedia when I could have been finishing the math homework I’ve actually been assigned.

      • I want the yolk to be runny enough to turn in to kind of a sauce for the muffin. I should have written “over easy” but had a brain fart.

    • With or without the sausage? It’s better with the sausage.

      They’ve actually got a thing now with egg whites in place of the eggs. But no sausage with that.

      • Pft. Muffins. If you’re not using a biscuit, just don’t bother.

        • Those McD biscuit sandwichs are good, but heavy as rocks. McD sausage is only vaguely meat like, pleah.

          • In college, I assembled them myself from the biscuits, scrambled eggs, and sausage at the dining hall. I’m not entirely sure how I survived college.

  4. I’m sure they are perfectly capable of having a breakfast/lunch overlap. I just don’t know how feasible it is from a cost/benefit analysis.

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