Usually when a product is a limited-edition version of something, its demand rockets. When it comes to a certain dipping sauce made popular by Adult Swim's Rick and Morty, the demand is high, to say the least. So high, that a woman traded a packet of McDonald's Szechuan Sauce for a car.
If you're not familiar with the McDonald's Szechuan Sauce craze, then let me fill you in. The sauce first showed up as a dipping option at McDonald's in 1998. It was a promotional tie-in for the Disney movie, Mulan. The limited-time promotion ended, and that was that. Or was it?
Cut to April of 2017, when a Rick and Morty episode aired that featured the beloved Szechuan Sauce. Fans of the show were reminded of the saucy goodness, and they were determined to get their hands on some. McDonald's answered the call for one day only on Oct. 7, 2017. The supplies were very limited, and only the lucky few got their hands on the sauce.
This opened up some clutch bargaining opportunities for the patient few who got the sauce but hadn't yet eaten it. According to Eater, one lucky sauce savant brokered a deal to trade one packet (literally just one little packet) of McDonald's Szechuan Sauce for a 2004 Volkswagen GTI.
The savvy sauce-owner was Rachel Marie from Macomb, MI, who, according to Eater, took to Facebook with a picture of the sole McDonald's Szechuan Sauce packet she had to offer. Seriously, this sauce must be amazing — because my nugget consumption usually consists of no less than two sauce packets. For someone to settle for just one of these guys, they must have really wanted that 1998 flavor. ,
According to The Drive, Rachel's swap sauce happened thanks to Duane Kimmel, the original owner of the car. He offered up his red 2004 Volkswagen GTI for the coveted sauce, and Rachel accepted. Really, that's how it happened.
It's a good thing that Rachel finalized the deal because that packet is about to become less valuable once winter rolls around. McDonald's apparently took notice of the sauce's demand when it was released for one day only on Oct. 7, 2017, and the fast food company decided to keep the nostalgia going.
The company sent out a tweet that said the Szechuan Sauce would be coming back to McDonald's restaurants in the winter. They went on to say that the sauce would be more widely available this time, and it would not be "one-day-only" deal. I'm sure Rick and Morty and Szechuan Sauce fans everywhere are rejoicing.
I've got to give it up to Rachel, though. She must have really been paying attention during the supply-and-demand lectures in school. Now, I'm sure everyone will be ordering extra Szechuan Sauce with their nuggets once it's back. Then, they can have the upper hand when it comes to bargaining once the Szechuan Sauce famine hits again.
It's simultaneously kind of awesome and insane that a cartoon television show and its fanbase could grab the attention of such a large corporation like McDonald's. The McDonald's website even has a section the describes your personality based on your sauce preferences and here is what they had to say about the fan-obsessed sauce:
Szechuan Sauce fans are typically incredibly motivated, born winners that combine a sweet disposition with a slow burning heat. When these people set goals (or make outright demands), they tend to achieve them.
I'm sad to admit that I don't really remember the original release of the Szechuan Sauce, which is surprising since I'm obsessed with Mulan. But I'm glad the fervor of Rick and Morty fans helped bring it back. I'm sure Rachel (riding in her new car) is, too.
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