What is wrong with Americans? Are most Americans ignorant, just don’t care, are afraid or do they really think what they eat is perfectly good? Or is it all of the above? I am going to explore some of my thoughts on some of these things over the next few weeks.
First, I admit I am a food snob. Some of my characteristics:
- I almost never eat at franchise fast food places and it is never because I want to when I do
- I almost never eat processed foods at home, we cook from scratch using the freshest ingredients possible
- I rarely eat at franchise restaurants (Waffle House being a big exception) like Applebees or Outback; when I do it is usually with a group and that is where they want to go and they don’t want anything to do with my suggestions. For example, we have to go to Applebees or Chilis or Olive Garden instead of a wonderful local tapas place with great food and character (Bees Knees, Augusta, Georgia, pure insanity)
- At home, I seek out locally owned restaurants that are good (plenty of restaurants of all types suck)
- When I travel, I seek out local restaurants with local cuisine, this is really difficult to find at Interstate exit areas, let me tell you. I admit that trying unknown local restaurants can be disappointing at times, but well worth the chance.
What made me think of this series of posts was the just released Best of Augusta 2010 survey results and, in the food categories, there are many “winners” that are just a joke.
For all you statisticians out there, you know that this isn’t a scientifically valid survey. Respondents are self-selected, not random. Nothing is known about the respondents so there can be no analysis of variance (like suburbs vs downtown. age groups, etc). So, this is not real “proof” that any of thewinners are any good, only that the respondents like them. Many of the respondents probably have a very limited knowledge of many of the restaurants that they should have considered, etc. I could go on and on, but you get the idea.
Are surveys like this actually doing a disservice to their communities or are they just harmless fun where some get deserving awards and bragging rights and many that don’t deserve it get the same. Many that do deserve it get nothing. This could actually affect the economic health of some businesses.
More thoughts on this coming and I’ll use actual examples from the Augusta Magazine Best Of results.