Don’t go into a restaurant with many beautiful women in it, says economist Tyler Cowen. Those places attract a lot of men, and although they may be popular for a few months the quality inevitably will soon diminish.
Don’t go into restaurants in city centers, Mr. Cowen says. Their rents are high, so they have to make money on a high volume of business, which leads to problems with food and service.
Don’t go into restaurants where people are smiling, he says. That indicates they are there to socialize, and are not truly serious about food.
Mr. Cowen is not the first person to formulate this theory, of course. Calvin Trillin memorably wrote that when he goes to a new town, he doesn’t want to go to the restaurant where you’d take your parents, he wants to go to the one where you’d take your old army buddy. Mr. Cowen even cites Mr. Trillin’s famous dislike of generic continental cuisine establishments that he referred to as La Maison de la Casa House.
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Sure, you may proudly display your kid’s fingerpainting on the fridge. It may fill your soul with happiness every time you see it. But every once in a while, it’s nice to look at a Picasso.
“Don’t hate the haute,” by Daniel Newman, Toledo Blade, April 24, 2012