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Airport Blogging

Do you know what they call the Quarter Pounder in Madrid? Not, as I'd been led to believe, a "Royal con queso." Instead, it's a Cuarto di Libra and I think a libra was Spain's pre-metric unit of weight. Since a libra presumably isn't the same as a pound, I'd be intereste to know how big a Cuarto di Libra actually is. Meanwhile, there is a McRoyal Delux à la Pulp Fiction but it seems to correspond to the Big and Tasty or perhaps the defunct Arch Delux.

March 31, 2006 | Permalink

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Comments

I think Cuarto di(de?) Libra means Quarter pound.

Posted by: William Dipini Jr. | Mar 31, 2006 9:17:20 AM

"Una hamburguesa de carne 100% vacuno con mayonesa, tomate natural, lechuga y queso fundido tipo Cheddar"

Cattle meat.

Posted by: William Dipini Jr. | Mar 31, 2006 9:25:49 AM

I think William's right, hence the "lb" abbreviation for pound. Also, it's France where they call it a Royale with cheese, right?

Posted by: Nicholas Beaudrot | Mar 31, 2006 10:24:41 AM

yup, "libra" means "pound". both the monetary figure as the weight measurement. "quarto de libra" is the same as a "quarter pound".

here in Brazil, it is called "quarteirão com queijo", where "quarteirão" can either mean a city block (its usual meaning) or the fourth part of something (probably the meaning McDonald's executives were going for). oh, "com queijo", as one would guess, is "with cheese".

Posted by: Solon | Mar 31, 2006 10:30:21 AM

I've never gotten around to figuring out how to do comments on TPM Cafe, so I'm using this to ask a question about your post on the Spain-Catalonia situation. Switzerland seems to be the big exception to the multinationalism=instability problem. They've successfully combined 4 distinct language/ethnic groups and 2 religions. Has anyone ever figured out how they did it, and could any of their methods be exported?

Posted by: Rebecca Allen,PhD,ARNP | Mar 31, 2006 1:45:19 PM

Matthew knows that "libra" means pound. The question he's asking is: how much that "libra" weighs. Answer: half a kilo, that is slightly more than a US pound (0.45kg).

Posted by: cedichou | Mar 31, 2006 1:52:08 PM

Wow, the Arch DeLuxe--like McPizza, I forgot that even existed.

Posted by: Scott Lemieux | Mar 31, 2006 3:41:34 PM

You went to Spain and you’re going to McDonalds? I thought you were the Trader Joe’s lentils guy.

According to http://www.unc.edu/~rowlett/units/dictL.html:

libra or libbra (lb)
a traditional unit of weight in Italian, Spanish, and Portuguese speaking countries. The libra was the Roman unit from which the English pound is descended; the symbol "lb" for the pound comes from this unit. The Roman libra contained only 12 unciae (ounces) and was about 0.722 English pound. The traditional Italian libbra was often of similar size, but a wide variety of libbras were used in Italian markets over the centuries. The Spanish and Portuguese units are larger, generally in the range from 1.011 to 1.016 English pound (very close to 460 grams). The Spanish libra equals 16 onzas, and the Portuguese libra equals 16 onças. The word "libra" is sometimes used now for the kilogram, a much larger unit.

Posted by: ostap | Mar 31, 2006 4:38:40 PM

Nicholas : "Also, it's France where they call it a Royale with cheese, right?"

Pulp Fiction led everyone (outside of France) to believe that, but it is just wrong. The proper name is Royal Cheese.

Also, for Matt : McDonald's in France sell the McDeluxe (which, I suppose, is the same as the Spanish McRoyal Deluxe) and, from time to time, the Big and Tasty. Probably not the same thing, then.

Posted by: Emmanuel | Apr 1, 2006 1:20:08 AM

You went to Spain and you’re going to McDonalds? I thought you were the Trader Joe’s lentils guy.

No, I went to Spain and then I went to the airport and saw a McDonald's menu there.

Posted by: Matthew Yglesias | Apr 1, 2006 11:36:22 AM

If you want fast food in Spain La Bocatta is the place to go.

Posted by: Randy Paul | Apr 2, 2006 11:03:21 AM

The Spanish libra is pretty darn close to a U.S. pound:

From http://www.sizes.com/units/libra.htm

In Spain, ? – 20th centuries, a unit of mass, varying locally, but the libra most commonly used was the Castillian libra (libra de Castilla), about 460.093 grams, (approximately 1.014 pounds avoirdupois). This is the value of the libra, 20th century, in Chile, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, and Peru.

Posted by: JR | Apr 2, 2006 7:34:55 PM

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