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McDonald's Corp. announced that it will test-market a chain of coffee bars under the banner McCafes.

There are about 300 McCafes in 17 countries, but though McDonald's has tested the concept from time to time in the US, it never has gone ahead with a full scale roll-out. Now, apparently because Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts have been so successful in cornering the coffee market - and because Dunkin' Donuts will shortly start selling espresso drinks in many of its units to better compete with Starbucks - McDonald's apparently wants a piece of the action.

All the new McCafes will be located inside existing McDonald's restaurants, likely in high-traffic locations. The immediate goal is to open 10 of them in the US this year, beginning in late fall.
KC's View:
More than three years ago, we reviewed a McCafe that had opened up in Chicago. We weren't impressed…the décor was about half as charming as a Dunkin' Donuts…and the coffee about 10 percent as good. The lattes were pale imitations of the Starbucks' varieties.

It was as if the only thing McDonald's thought it could bring to the party was cheap espresso drinks. Which isn't nearly enough for our money.