Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Shocking Poll Resualts

Wow, I’m truly shocked by the results of this poll. It evolved slowly, and predictably, until the very end, when a surge from who knows where pushed the results in a totally unthinkable way. With all that happens in Cleveland, we surely cannot count ourselves as trend setters, rather a very health vector of wholesome restaurant patrons who can spot a trend and lift it up, or shatter someone’s dreams. I have my opinion, and from those polled I’m not lucky enough to be looking for change in the near future. A lot of different people all over the world have an idea of what pizza is, and I’m quite open minded to those opinions. I have one simple critique, or observation that a pizza is not a cracker; you should not be able to see through your pizza. Your pizza crust should not be able to cut you. A pizza, like a woman, should not be flat, overly salty, and overpriced. For some reason this is exactly what a lot of people are calling artisanal pizza here in Cleveland. I’m not gonna hold back on this one, but a single serving cracker thin pizza for $16 is just wrong, and unlike most pollsters, I’m not just predicting, but hoping this trend sinks faster than a bucket of pizza sauce, since you aren’t getting any of that moist sauce on your cracker pizza!

Sushi seems to have run its course and entrenched itself in your culinary scene. People don’t seem as fanatic about it as they did a few years back. I think there is a core group of sushi patrons that are educated enough now to differentiate from the good and the bad so quality across the board has risen and will stay there over the long haul. The novelty of eating raw fish has also diminished. Not that it is any less enjoyable now, but those people who where squeamish about it 5 years ago, have just gotten over it. Sushi is here to say, and let us all hope it doesn’t go by the way of the Chinese Take-out.

Mass market coffee is only a few well placed television spots and another shock to the economy from disappearing. Small, local, homey coffee shops will live on, but their evil corporate money eating monster of a brother will not survive. I’m seeing pictures of people in the unemployment line on the cell phone, sipping Starbucks, and I wonder which will happen first…..the coffee or the phone? As soon as CNN runs the story every half hour that describes the hundreds of dollars in coffee you spend every year, I think a lot of people are going to take notice. Not a single one of them is going to stop drinking coffee, but they will make more economically conscience decisions on where they purchase it from.

Green dining, in the height of all it’s glorying, entering the spring harvest season, with the opening of the not at all ironically named Greenhouse Tavern in Cleveland and 40% of the poll results concur that Green dining will be the first of the previously mentioned trends to hit rock bottom. Wow, this seems unthinkable, Slow food, Local Food Cleveland; we are all feeling like we just got punched in the gut. I do see where there is a reasonable argument that due to the economy the majority of restaurant patrons with be focused on value over quality. On the other hand, the ‘green’ message has been growing very fast the past few years, and the message has reached a maximum number of people. Not just our dinning choices, evidence found in the Greenhouse Tavern, and not just in restaurants, but everything from cars to toilets are going green. While due to the current economic situation green dining might have, or in the near future reached a platue, I do not see it regressing any time soon.


Dave said...

Sorry, I couldn't disagree more on the pizza. I assume you are talking about pizzas like those made at Lolita, Bar Cento, and many other places around town. From what I understand, this style of pizza is pizza in its truest form for Italy. I agree there are many different types of pizza and each person has their own taste. After a long night a drinking, a nice greasy pie from Angelo's in Lakewood hits the spot, but the rest of the time, the pickled green tomato pizza that has been hanging around Lolita's menu the past few months is the best pizza I've ever had. While the crust is thin and has a nice "crunch" to it, it is also "chewy" and has a great mouth feel to it. Obviously the ingredients placed on the pizza are top notch too. Lolita's most expensive pie is only $13, and is big enough to split with someone or have leftovers for lunch the next day. I hope that this style is here to stay!

Rachel said...

First off: "A pizza, like a woman, should not be flat, overly salty, and overpriced." -- Mike, you seriously crack me up.

Secondly, I'm surprised at the green dining results, as well. In my experience, these places tend to be cheaper and have healthier options. The first thing I've been thinking of as I see my job dissolving this next month has been how I can cook more at home -- with whole products which are cheaper and healthier - and keep my health-care costs from ever increasing by staying healthy. I've seen more people at the gym lately and I thought that might be in alignment to my theory, but maybe they all just lost their jobs, too, and are trying to pass time. Hmm.

p.s. Are you going to nerd-out and give us the 411 on how it is absolutely safe to eat pork? I hope so. I saw that China and Russia just banned pork and meat products from the US today. Such stupidity!

Michael Walsh said...

Rachel, No, by no measns possible am i gonna touch the swin flu thing here! Like I said, this is would be my dream come true if things went 'right' 10 years at the CDC, me VS the swine flu, that would be awsome. Instead i'm explaining to ppl that eating pork from new jersy is cool???

Michael Walsh said...

Dave, thanks for your comment, I am not claiming to have any truths, just opinions. I will agree that most artisianal pizzas have high quality toppings, but when i get a pizza, i want a meal on dough, kinda like a sandwich. I know these pizzas are popular, and for good reason, but i don't like them. For sure, i'm not claiming those restaurants you mentioned are doing anything wrong! There is a type of pizza I dont' like, and a million other variations i do like. So to each man his own. And I thank you again for you opinion.

maybe we can discuss the differance of flatbreads from pizza. If I ordered a flatbread I would be impressed if it was cracker thin!

Dave said...

Michael - I didn't mean to dismiss your opinion, I was just offering mine. For whatever reason, pizza is one dish that is a very personal thing for what is "best". Chicago deep dish, NY, Neapolitan, etc. I also agree that many places are trying to imitate Neapolitan style and don't do it well. In my opinion, it's a much more difficult style pizza to perfect. At the end of the day, pizza is like sex, it's always good. With enough beer, even a Totino's pizza is tasty. :)

Michael Walsh said...

Totino's and beer, Yum!