McDonald’s Closed at 14th and U St, NW for Renovations – Get Ready for a McCafe

14th and U St, NW

@Fashionry tweets us this morning:

“@PoPville the McDs at 14th and U is closed and surrounded by fencing. Any word on if it’s a reno or closing?”

Back in February we learned that the McDonald’s at 14th and U St, NW would be closing for renovations to be rebranded as a McCafe. A new facade is coming too. Stay tuned.

34 Comment

  • What exactly is a McCafe? Just a McDonald’s with fancier furnishings? I don’t think any sort of renovation could quell the drama that unfolds daily at this location.

    • McSmallPlates, duh.

    • I think it means there’s a separate station and line for their specialty coffee drinks and such. I’m pretty sure that’s the setup at the one at 13th and New York NW. So you don’t have to stare at the fryalator when you want your McLatte, which is like a latte but is made from pink slime instead of coffee and milk.

      • I don’t think I’ve been to the one at 13th and New York, but in the only McDonald’s I’ve been to where the McCafe machines are at a separate counter (with its own cash registers) — L’Enfant Plaza — you have to stand in the regular line and pay at the regular cash register, and then await your McCafe drink at the other counter. Totally non-intuitive.

        • Well, that is an odd system. It’s been a couple years, but I remember noticing it after I’d ordered at the normal line and was surprised it was there. That’s what I thought the McCafe concept was in the U.S., but maybe it’s a totally different style of restaurant. For some reason I can’t figure this out despite years of never remembering to Google it.

          • justinbc

            The ones that I’ve seen (I think the first one I remember was in Raleigh around 2001/2002) have actual different “cafe” menus, not just latte drinks.

      • That’s not a terrible idea. The only thing I ever go to a McDonald’s for is coffee (which is a lot cheaper than Starbucks and not burnt like theirs). But only if it’s quick.

    • Think of it as a Parisian McDonald’s.

      To replace the former one, which was something from the docks of Marseille.

  • Mmmm… Small plates of McChickens and McDoubles.

  • In Buenos Aires, they have a ton of McCafes (look it up on google images). They are actually quite lovely. The interior looks more like a Starbucks and they have display cases full of gourmet desserts and fancy lattes and cappuccinos served in mugs, instead of paper cups (also served with a shot of seltzer water, but that’s just an Argentinian thing). If this is what it turns into, that corner will be majorly cleaned up.

    • And, if my memory serves me right, it was just a cafe. No burgers, fries, or McNuggets.

    • My recollection of the one I went to in Buenos Aires was that the McCafe was a separate counter/area within a McDonald’s.

    • I think the McCafes in Latin America are different than the ones here. In the cities where I’ve seen them in Latin America, they are “premium” — sited in upscale neighborhoods or malls, and offering products that are relatively high end when compared with their competitors. In the US, I think they are a notch higher than a regular McDonalds, but nowhere near “premium.” I think they are designed to try to compete with Starbucks, offering a slightly lower price point than Starbucks does.

      • Yeah. I’m still not clear as to what exactly they have in mind for this particular McDonald’s or what they mean when they say “McCafe” (as this location already had the McCafe machines).
        I’ve seen a few area McDonald’s locations temporarily closing to get makeovers in the past few months, so I wonder if that’s what they’re doing here.
        I didn’t think there was anything different about the “made-over” McDonald’s locations other than new exteriors/interiors, but now that I think about it, I’m not sure that I’ve been inside any of them — I think I’ve just gone through the drive-through.

    • Oh man, if only they’d serve Milka mcflurries like they do at the the ones in BA…

  • justinbc

    It’s a toss up between this bus stop and the one around 14th & Columbia for worst smelling in DC.

  • McHatin’ it.
    An article in the Post today about the decline of this nutritionally horrific (but sometimes delicious – what can I say, it’s a guilty pleasure) American institution.

    • Old news. This has been repeatedly brought up in the business press for awhile. Burger King and Wendy’s have been struggling even longer. Perhaps McD’s iconic status or its fries has enabled it to do slightly better than those competitors until recently.

  • But will people still be able to McPee on the building?

  • tragic. This was my first neighborhood McDonalds. Back in the days of the walk up window (after 9 PM), and absolutely no inside seating (just standing areas). Now, it’s going to be a cafe. How parisian. I miss this place’s edge.

  • west_egg

    An awesome photo of the McD’s building dated April 9, 1968, taken in the aftermath of the riots:

    I say bring back the specs!

  • austindc

    McCafe?! Awesome! Will they also sell lipstick that I can put on my pig?

Comments are closed.