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October 11, 2009



I'm kind of disappointed that you had to be so apologetic to write a post about chains. I know you kind of had to, or risk an onslaught of snobbery.

The Time article you link nails the point. As much as we all love the concept of eating at local restaurants, the fact is that most are terrible. They are started by people with tiresome day jobs who long to work for themselves and misperceive that owning a restaurant is easy. They don't do anything interesting, they buy the cheapest ingredients and hire the cheapest staff, and they generally don't last more than a few months. Hell, it inspired a popular reality TV show. We go to chains because we are consistently let down whenever we don't.

Megan Neher

I enjoyed your blog post today. I agree! I love when I can patronize a locally-owned restaurant.

But, I think there's probably a whole bunch of us who have our favorite chains and who aren't ashamed to be regulars. I'd say yes to: Chipolte, NoRTH, RA, Pei Wei (haven't tried Five Guys yet, but I can't wait!). I'd add some of my favs: Panera, Mimi's Cafe, BD's Mongolian BBQ, Houston's and Brio/Bravo.


The problem occurs when people rely on chain restaurants every single time they eat out (particularly for, ahem, lunch). No one should begrudge someone the opportunity to eat at a chain once in a while. It may take a little more time, a little more money or a few less than stellar experiences, but eating at locally owned places is really not difficult in this town. They are in every part of the metro.

Yes, some of them do suck


I DO eat at chains, but I find most of them to be uninspired at best. Some random comments:

If the restaurant name is supposed to indicate the number of people it takes to run the joint, then the Liberty store should be called 15 Guys. The burgers are good (though not as good as In N Out), the fries are acceptable (how pretentious is it to tell you what town the potatoes are from? Give me a break.) The place is so noisy...bad enough that I won't be back.

Chik-fil-a: Ate at my first store, Exton Mall, Exton, Pa. about 33 years ago. Nice sandwich, but though it is bigger (and more expensive) than a Wendy's or McDonalds, it isn't that much better.

Pei Wei: There's one in KC? Please tell me where. I rather like this place, but I've only eaten at one in Irvine, CA. It definitely is factory food, but one of the best, by my taste.

P.F. Chang: I've eaten at these 5 or 6 times and decided to swear off. I love the lettuce wraps, but little else. High prices for not much value.

The good news is, chains have gotten better over the years. The bad news is, as they get better, they get more expensive, and are not as much "value". So, here in Liberty, give me Lucia's, a great local place at no greater cost, over Olive Garden, a stone's throw away, which isn't very Italian in the first place.

Keep up the good blog work!


Not sure why my post was posted by "the DLC". It wasn't. Just my thoughts.


Year on the Grill

The post and choices are excellent. Sure, I disagree with a couple choices, your inclusion of Chic-Fil-A is spot on (if drive through is your only option). The sentiments about local we should all take to heart


Hey DLC. There are at least two Pei Weis that I know about. One at 91st and Metcalf near Borders and the other at 199th and Strang Line

Now, regarding this online Chipotle system, my question is how do you pick up? Do you just go to the register? "Back up buddy! I ordered online!"

That is what I've not liked

Anyway, great list!


Uh, or Bob. Whoever was looking for Pei Wei that is where they are

/seems like DLC should be aware of those locations...and all others. Damn that guy gets around


There seems to have been some confusion. Your username appears beneath your comment on this site, so it was indeed Bob who was wondering about Pei Wei, not me (TheDLC). I've been to the one on Metcalf and thought it was ok. Haven't been to a Chik-fil-a in years, mostly because of the insistence that all their employees love Jesus in the same manner as the founders.


Yeah, it is the formatting of the comments. The lines frame them in a confusing way.

True about Chik-fil-a though. That is why they couldn't open one inside OP Mall and had to do an external building (closed Sundays)

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