Danger, Will Robinson

In perusing The New York Times on Tuesday, and yes, I actually was reading the physical inky newspaper itself, which puts me in a decided minority these days, I ran across an article titled “Discounts Have Restaurants Eating Own Lunch.”

It’s a story about a tit-for-tat price war between chain restaurants that are trying to lure as many customers as possible during these tough economic times.

I want to make an urgent plea to all fellow unchained restaurants lovers not to give in to the allure of a discounted meal at Applebee’s or become entranced by the possibility of a $7 entree at Chili’s.

Stay strong,  and just drive on by! You’ll find a more interesting, more locally flavored place just a bit down the road, I’m sure. And you’ll save a little slice of your soul by not buying into the alleged charms of a Ruby Tuesday or T.G.I. Friday’s.

I like to save a buck as much as the next guy. My wife will attest to that, in spades. But we’re talking just a couple dollars here. And we’re talking about spending our hard earned cash where it matters most, with folks who are working hard to establish their independently run restaurant or those longtime mom-and-pop places that are feeling the economic pinch.

So stay strong readers! Have a glass of water instead of a glass of soda and you’ll probably save the difference in a meal right there.

Coming up: We venture down to the Catskills for some fun and hopefully sun. We’ll be tubing in Esopus Creek and working up an appetite after a hike to the Giant Ledges. This will all lead to hearty appetites, of course, so hopefully we’ll have some good unchained restaurants to report about.


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