Being a fan of McDonald’s, I have to acknowledge one of the most notorious events in recent McDonald’s history–the McDonald’s Coffee case. In 1992, Stella Liebeck was burned by coffee purchased at a McDonald’s Drive Thru. Originally seeking to settle for payment of $20,000 for medical bills. The jury awarded Liebeck over 2 million dollars; which was reduced by the judge to $640,000–and eventually settled for less than $600,000. (A fare description of the case can be found on wikipedia.)
The Drive Thru, where the coffee was sold, was at 5001 Gibson Boulevard S.E. in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Being in Albuquerque, I had to stop by and see it.
The Gibson Boulevard McDonald’s is a hybrid model, combining the “Mansard Roof” exterior with the modern interior. While the inside had little in the “linger zone” department, the restaurant did make much use of the “grab and go” section, as well as maximizing flexible seating. The restaurant hosts a large play area, where it seemed that several families had camped out to enjoy watching the children sliding and climbing. This restaurant had a very friendly staff as well as clean dining area.
It was a pleasure to see a place where the big coffee story happened. It was good to see that the restaurant survived the ordeal and had even been remodeled for continued use.