Thursday, January 8, 2009

No Restaurant Chains Michael

It's already January 8, 2009, and I still haven't officially written down my goals for the new year. I've thought about the goals, I've scribbled a few things on scratch paper, but I haven't made anything official.

One goal is to try 52 new restaurants, diners, bakeries or coffee shops. A new place each week. I've lived in Minneapolis for almost eight years and I haven't come anywhere near close to visiting the variety of places here.

One of my closest friends is a chef. An amazing chef. He gives me a hard time when I go to restaurant chains. How many times have I heard him say, "No restaurant chains Michael!" And if he knows I've gone out to eat, he always asks where. Sometimes I blame it on friends if we go to a chain. Can I help it if I love a BBQ pork sandwich from TGIFridays?

I do see his point. I live in a great city that offers an endless supply of places to eat. I should be trying them out. I've promised Mr. Chef that I'll try a new place each week. To make sure I do, I'm making it a blog requirement. I'll track my adventures online and report what I find.

Since making this pledge to him, I'm seeing restaurants that I never noticed before. They are all over and my curiosity is peaked. I've started a list of the places I want to try. I'll have no trouble getting to 52 places in this new year. Maybe I'll even visit more. That would make Mr. Chef very happy.


Anonymous said...

What a great New Years resolution and goal! Quite fun, too...actually!!! As a one-of-a-kind jewelry designer, I can relate to your friend, the Chef. I hate when people shop at the big chain retailers where the items are mass produced overseas, somewhere. Supporting the American Dream, the Mom and Pop shops and the Independent Artists and local talent have seemed to fall back in favor! YAY!

Michael Rivers said...

I'll tell Mr. Chef that you are on his side. haha. Here's to the independent artists and local talent!!

Laura said...

I'll be curious to see what places you visit. I'm a chain rut and hate it. There use to be some great restaurants on the St. Croix if you don't mind driving. Sure many are still open.

I agree with Kenneth about jewelry but the stuff I always like by independent artists is too expensive! lol. I could make my family go broke with my taste.

Ryan Thomas said...

This is a great goal. There's no reason to go to the big chain restaurants unless you live in the suburbs (which I always equate to that being their only option).

Chain restaurants thrive on consistency and repetition. Life is much more fun when you try the random, new places. It's not just about local economy (because a lot of chains can be franchised by locals), but it's about the adventure. Even the bad places can be fun and an experience.

I've lived in San Francisco for little over a year and I think I hit up Subway a couple times for lunch and that's the closest Ive come to a chain. I have to say it's made my time here far more fun!

Michael Rivers said...

Hi Ryan,
Thanks for the post. I totally agree with you. I've gone to three new places now (blogs to follow shortly). And it has been an adventure hunting out places that I didn't know existed. I have quite a list going of places I want to visit this year!