Archive for the ‘Restaurants’ Category

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Ronald McDonald, Locavore

July 27, 2010

Last week I saw a new commercial from McDonald’s called “From Here“. This is part of a new campaign that focuses on the fact that some of the food consumed at my (Washington State) McDonald’s is sourced “locally”. Potatoes, apples, fish, milk. Yes, McDonald’s has taken the burgeoning “Locavore” trend and turned it into a marketing pitch.

I am going to go out on a limb here and assume that the typical McDonald’s customer is not also someone deeply concerned with things like Locavore and Slow Food and Michael Pollan’s manifesto. Yet, the savvy marketers at McD’s have realized that there is something changing in the overall consumer zeitgeist and everyone is starting to pay more attention to the origin of their food. What works for the best restaurants should certainly work for McDonald’s.

A good fact checker is likely going to demonstrate that similar items at other fast food joints also come from relatively local sources. In the Pacific Northwest we grow a lot of potatoes and apples and produce a lot of milk. Most of that probably ends up consumed within a reasonable radius.

But, facts are beside the point here. The ability to take a concept like Locavore that exists at the fringes of mass market consciousness and turn it into a strong and interesting campaign is just brilliant marketing. Like it or not, but somehow a lot of people are now going to “feel better” about eating at McDonald’s.

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Top 5

November 9, 2005

Top 5 Types of Interesting People:

5. Crispin Porter + Bogusky People
4. Cingular Customer Service People
3. Starbucks Baristas w/o Names
2. Celebrity Chefs
1. People that read my blog

Some follow-ups:
Cingular and I have come to a better place. Amazingly enough, it was the work of one dedicated account rep that took care of it all. Of course, since I was threatening to go to the person that did the purchasing for one of the largest accounts and complain I am not that surprised.


“12 Songs” (Neil Diamond)
12 Songs is very good. Not cheerful, but very good.

I did manage to lose some of that weight. I did not cut back on the drinking. Or the eating. Perhaps it is all in my head.

I love my new tattoo. Wish I could show it off.

Burger King playing football is not working for me. But, still love those smart folks at CP+B.

Variety is the spice of life.

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To experience the truffle foam…

August 27, 2005

If you read the various food and lifestyle magazines regularly, as you well should, then you know about the revolution taking place in culinary corners. Lead by the so-called “alchemists of food” like Ferran Adria at el Bulli in Spain, the very elements of our food are being deconstructed, reconstructed, and realigned. Solids become liquids, liquids become powder, and all sense of stability seems lost.

The reason this comes to mind is because I am going to Spain in November and I am not going to be able to enjoy a visit to el Bulli. Adria seems to think it is ok to be closed several months a year, leaving gastrotourists like me out in the cold. What kind of world do we live in?

I could buy Adria’s book and make the recipes myself, but the book is a little pricey. Instead, I think I should just use my imagination.

Here is my imaginary menu:

Peanut butter smoke floating over frozen toast and jam jelly
Crispy tofu chips infused with potato
Diet Coke croutons
Essence of Oreo cookie

Maybe I should buy the book.

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Last week was my two year anniversary at Microsoft…

July 9, 2005

Last week was my two year anniversary at Microsoft. Amazing how I have gotten so caught up in that world. It really takes all my energy just to ensure I don’t get left behind.

Have you watched Hell’s Kitchen with Gordon Ramsay? It is way too much fun. Even better is to watch the BBC and his Kitchen Nightmares show. The man curses like a demon and cooks like an angel. I had the good fortune to eat at one of his restaurants in London (Gordon Ramsay at Claridges) and know that he truly practices what he preaches.

The most amazing part of the show is how the aspiring cooks seem so oblivious to the simple lessons he is trying to teach. These are not stupid people, they are just stubborn people.

Ah, there is the lesson. We are all stubborn. We all suffer from the same inability to see an alternate perspective and really embrace it. We cling to the notion that our own thought processes — our own brain — could not possibly fail us. Our own intellect is ultimately the only one we can trust.

Hence, why Microsoft exhausts me.

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