This Country Has The World's Best McDonald's, According To A Michelin Star Chef

McDonald's is the largest fast-food chain in the world, with over 38,000 locations in roughly 100 countries. And if you've ever dined at a Mickey D's while traveling abroad, you've probably realized by now that the iconic eatery isn't the same everywhere you go. McDonald's is known to change its design — like turning its arches teal at one Arizona location — and menu items — like poutine fries in Canada — depending on the country and region. And according to some foodies, some iterations are better than others.

In fact, Gareth Ward, a Michelin-starred chef, thinks one particular McDonald's is the best in the world — and one of the top food spots in all of Wales, where he runs the U.K.'s best restaurant (as chosen by the 2022 and 2023 National Restaurant Awards), Ynyshir. The unexpected honor from the chef goes to a McDonald's in Welshpool, a quaint town not far from the English border. Ward told WalesOnline, "You're going to laugh at this — Welshpool McDonald's. I'm telling you now, Welshpool McDonald's is on a different level. It's just got different [elements] to everyone else. [It's] just absolutely smashing it."

Not everyone agrees with the chef

A McDonald's in Wales might not be the place you'd expect to see an award-winning chef, but Gareth Ward really has a soft spot for the Welshpool location over an hour-long drive away from his own restaurant. "Last time [I went there] I had a crispy chicken and it definitely had [something like] truffle mayonnaise on it," Ward explained to WalesOnline. "I don't think it did, but it tasted like it did. Everybody I speak to says this is, by far, the best MacDonald's in the world. Welshpool McDonald's that's what it's all about."

In an ITV segment (via WalesOnline) about Ward's favorite Golden Arches spot, chef Phil Vickery doubted the Welsh fast-food joint was worth the attention. "Can I just say, was that April the first?" he asked, comparing Ward's food preferences to an April Fool's joke. Some customers who have dined at the Welshpool McDonald's might agree with Vickery. According to Google Reviews, the location has only earned an average of 3.8 out of 5 stars, and some diners complained of cold food, flies, wrong orders, and rude customer service.

Is Sri Lanka's McDonald's better?

Wales is worth visiting for its 600-plus castles and idyllic coastlines, but is it really home to the world's best McDonald's? According to James McGowan, a connoisseur of the fast-food brand, the best McDonald's in the world are found in Sri Lanka. He told Business Insider in 2016 that the country's locations only offer a few simple sandwiches but that they were among the best he'd tried.

These days, Sri Lankan McDonald's seem to have expanded their menu, where you'll find familiar favorites such as chicken wraps, Big Macs, and filet-o-fish sandwiches. Mickey D's in the South Asian country also offer some unique options, such as curry n' rice, McRice with chicken, and the spicy chicken footlong, which incorporate local flavors. When McGowan visited a Sri Lankan branch, he also ate the seeni sambol sandwich, an omelette burger, and a fish and rice combo meal.