Cosi Employees Gone Awry, Unraveling MSG, and State Fair Monstrosities: Eating and Reading

A tasty roundup of the best stuff we’re reading this week.

The New York Times says Family Meal (above) and other restaurants in Frederick are rather tasty, something everyone in the Washington area already knew. Photographs by Scott Suchman

Employees Behaving Badly

As someone who has had a pizza dropped on my lap—and then picked up and served to
me—by a staffer at a DC Cosi, I say, it’s about time the dwindling lunch chain’s CEO
said something about its service. [Grub Street] —Ann Limpert

Groupon sales rep threatens merchant with flood of bad Yelp reviews; gets (rightly)
fired. [All Things D] —Sophie Gilbert

These Things Exist . . . Why?

Gawker asks the question on every summer vacationer’s mind: “What is it with tourism
and fudge?” [Gawker] —Anna

Jay Rayner calls the Negroni “foul.” Well, we can’t all have sophisticated palates. [The Guardian] —SG

I’m pretty sure you could combine pot with any food and stoners wouldn’t complain,
but this is almost too perfect a match. [Huffington Post] —Chris Campbell

Mysteries Unraveled

James Surowiecki looks at the reasons—many of them psychological—that retail and restaurant lobster
prices haven’t dropped alongside the shellfish’s plummeting wholesale prices. Fun
fact: Lobsters were once so sneered at in colonial New England that servants often
forbade employers to feed it to them more than three times a week. [New Yorker] —AL

This BuzzFeed article has everything: a
Breaking Bad-themed design concept,
David Chang dropping F-bombs, 1920s Chinese advertisements. I’m not sure what just happened to
me, but you probably want it to happen to you too. [BuzzFeed
—Jessica Voelker

Avocados, like airplane seats, are 30 percent smaller than they used to be. [NPR] —SG


The city slickers from New York have figured out what we already knew: Our nearby
hamlet of Frederick serves up some pretty tasty dishes. [NYT] —CC

The State of Affairs at State Fairs

State fair survival is all about selling deep-fried novelties. [WSJ] —JV

I’m just glad this list of outrageous (read: disgusting) state fair food didn’t include
anything from my home state of Kentucky. I was expecting the worst. [The Atlantic] —CC

Less Food Porn, More Food Zen

Via Eater, here’s a set of Flickr photos from Food for Thought that let you dine vicariously
at the dreamy Willows Inn. [Flickr] —JV

Big Scores

More cronut news: Creator
Dominique Ansel has scored a cookbook deal. No word on whether it’s a ho-nut if you make it at home.
[Eater] —SG

Pete Wells! You just got an $80,000 raise. Slate writer
L.V. Anderson thinks employers should pay restaurant critics more money—but make them spend their
salaries when they dine out. [Slate] —JV

Prince wins every food award this week just for incorporating Dave Chappelle and pancakes
into his cover art. [Grantland] —CC

Getting Goofy

Band names based on food, from A to Z. [Fox] —SG

Restaurant rebranding is always a tricky proposition. Especially so if you’re
Masaharu Morimoto and Eater has given your original concept the dreaded (and absolutely hilarious) “cat
treatment.” [Eater