An in depth analysis of WHY YOU ARE WRONG

Thursday, July 20, 2006

More Thoughts On The Purpose Of Cities

A recent post on NY seems to support my point about the purpose of cities. NY is now gaining new corporate headquarters like AlCOA's. What is it about such a high cost city that makes this a rational choice for companies? It seems that the AlCOA execs saw the benefit's of being in a real organic city. I believe that one collects art.


Amos_thePokerCat said...

Nah, it is because restaurants in PIT suck. NO decent Veitnamese food, for one thing. Not one Zagat rated place is in PIT. Not one.

Merge Divide said...

Have you been to Tram's kitchen in Lawrenceville? Kim's Tea Room (Shadyside, corner of Penn and Negley)? My Ngoc (in the 2200 block of Penn Ave)? Pho Minh (on Penn, once again, in Larryville)? Perhaps Pittsburgh residents simply don't submit information to Zagat. I've never consulted (or even heard of) the site, and I am a frequent traveler. There are plenty of good restaurants in Pittsburgh. You just need to get out more.

John Morris said...

Ok they are not as good as in NY, but I would agree with david. They are pretty good.

NY is the king of all cities for food so this is just not a fair fight at this time.

NY is both a training ground and an R&D facility for food. The diversity of places is beyond all belief and getting more diverse every day. Now I don't want all the foodies to attack. I am talking about NY in total.

John Morris said...

Pho Min is in Garfield

John Morris said...


You are right in you guess on Pittsburgh's next big thing.

Amos_thePokerCat said...

If you have never heard of Zagat's, then you are not much of a foodie traveller, but a typical PIT-ghr.

I used to get out lots. Now, with gas at $3/gal, why bother the cost and hassle for a mediorcre dinner. It would also be easy to complain about the quality of chinese food in PIT too. See the diuscussion on Tea Leaves, "P.F. Chang's: Why it's evil." Dim sum? Any comments on the total lack of edible dim sum?

I did not say that there were NO vietnamese restaurants, but there were no DECENT vietnamese ones.

I have eaten vietnamese food in Denver, San Jose, DC, and Houston. All area with large active vietnamese populations. This area stinks. Cleveland has a better selection. One thing that is obviously missing here is a Pho-only restaruant. All these cities have a number (some a dozen or more) of these quick, cheap, pho only places. PIT. nothing.

I have been to Tram's, both before and after the move across the street. One time I was there, and it was so nasty, I litterlly had to leave before I was going to vomit. The owner knew something was wrong from my expression, but if I stopped to explain, well, it would have been ugly. Rancid deep fried oil, but that was an exception, generally it is just lame. I have also been to My Ngoc and Pho Minh (best of the bunch, especially the fried tofu app, which is not saying much). Kim's, I thought was just Chinese/Korean.

I have also tried Me Lyng in Homestead. They were shocked when I order their vietnamese menu items. They had to switch to Chinese food because nobody knew what vietnamese food was. Naturally, their pho was disappointing since they have so little volume. They can not afford to keep a pot going if no one will order. They are also being crushed by PF Chang.

There is one more, but the name escapes me. Also on Penn between Tram's and Pho Minh, if it is still open.

Two examples:

1) Bun Bo Hue.
Name one place in PIT that has it.

There are three places in CLE that have it. Two are not that bad. The closest really good bun bo hue is in Atlantic City.

2) Bánh mì

Only the poor My Ngoc sandwich lady on the strip makes a timid and limp facsimile. No crispy, crunchy baguette, but a humid limp Manchini bun. Chicken. Just Chicken. No pate, with mystery lunch meat. Skimpy on the cilantro and veggies.

... and expensive! $5 for a Bánh mì, I could almost get 3 of them in Denver for that price. Even in Lee's Sandwich in expensive San Jose, you can get a 10" basic for $3.

Amos_thePokerCat said...

Here is a wiki for Bún Bò Huế. The "best" ones are almost neon red with chili, and gelatin thick with collagen and other disolved connective tissue from the long slow cooking of beef and pork bones. Yummo, to both mock and channel Racheal Raye.

Amos_thePokerCat said...

OH, Kim's, the run down red store front? Ya, I eat there. Limited selection of vietnamese. Mediocre.

Didn't that used to be Ghengis Kones?

Merge Divide said...

Ok... I amend my assumptions. At least you have been to these places. I've had friends enjoy their experiences at the places I named, and figured you might too.

I would definitely NOT characterize myself as a "foodie traveller", so that would explain my lack of awareness of Zagat's. When I travel, I view my need to eat as an inconvenient reality. It is simply fuel that allows me to see and do as much as I can within my alloted time.

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