The towns have emptied out, and streets are clear of traffic, which makes repairs the only challenge in getting from Point A to Point B. Restaurants are asleep at the wheel, mostly, this time of year, which means that it’s best to stick to simple joints where the money is so tight that chefs and managers are still there rather than on a beach or in the mountains.
The challenge is that these simpler places just don’t do it for me much any longer: Things are OK, but if I want a burger, a hot dog, a salad, or a sandwich? I’ll stay at home. Why pay more? And why pay $14-17 a cocktail and $8-10 for a beer?
The supplies arrived, in fact. About four times a year, shipments are delivered from purveyors across the country. Mark Bittman got that right in his piece in today NYT magazine: He described picking up a $60 steak and cooking it at home for four people. (Why he insisted on calling it “local,” is anyone’s guess. The best beef in the country comes from Idaho, and other places out west. But never mind.) Anyhow, he’s 100% on the money: For $60, you can have a meal at home that tops 90% of restaurants.
And nothing is easier to cook than steak.
More broadly, the # of terrific vegetables this time of year makes clear that dining at home is a great way to get things done. Point A to Point B was never easier.