Reporting, Recording and Relaying - But Always Telling It As I See It

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I'd Rather Eat Goat

Chipotle. What the hell is that and how has it made its way into the American lexicon with the ravenous guile of flies feasting on horse manure in 1900 Manhattan? So I get this part…it’s a pepper. A roasted jalapeƱo from what I gather. The question is when did it become fashionable to include this culinary bullshit term into every other dish in every other chain restaurant in every asphalt drag shopping strip in this great country? The only thing that would piss me off more is seeing chipotle lattes at Starbucks. But knowing what I know, this wouldn’t surprise me.

Maybe the bigger question is; why are we so susceptible to wanting our chipotle mocha chicken? (Nonsensical but tasty sounding isn’t it?) Naming food dishes almost takes on the strategy of picking a good porn name. Betty Green probably won’t be bringing in the dollars from the credit card you keep hidden from your wife as much as Jenna Jamison nor cause you to go through as many Kleenex. Chipotle…Jenna…fun names to say.

And if there are two things we like it is a) fun and b) being part of the crowd. Of course it is very possible that the problem rests with me, and I am never really sure whether or not I am cynical or just miserable (please post your thoughts on this in the comment area below). So I say to myself, “Go out and get a big plate of chipotle salmon ceviche or chipotle beef tartar.” The problem is, most of the places that lather you with a barrage of chipotle menu options are the same places that require you to walk around with one of those coaster/beeper/pagers that light up like a hooker at an AFL-CIO convention when it is your time to get seated. Ever see a group of people when one of those goes off? How happy they are to get trotted off to get their hands on the french fried onion dome appetizer before mainlining the chipotle. These are also the people that grab the fancy drink menu to order the Blue Marga-Jito.

Maybe I am missing out, and far be it from me to be the voice of disdain for pop-culture. And really, chipotle is pop-culture. Think about it, does anything in these restaurants really taste any different than it did 20 years ago? Twenty years ago you used to get peppered chicken, then “blackened” chicken and now CHIPOTLE chicken. One of my most memorable meals was also one of worst I had. I ordered goat. I received a black hunk of sinewy gristle. It wasn’t that great but I remembered it, far longer than I would ever remember the chipotle-tofu-enchilada-chicken-mex.

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