Skip to comments.What Happened to the American Middle-Class Meal?
Posted on 10/21/2012 9:07:23 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
Living in a big city, as I do, it isnt hard for me to spend a lot on dinner. One big meal, and you can find yourself over $200 poorer, just for two people. Of course, it isnt hard for me to spend very little on dinner either. I got fried pork chops and pork fried rice sent to me from the local Chinese takeout last night, and the whole meal cost me something like nine dollars. What is hard to get is a meal for $50 or so, and that seemingly innocuous fact speaks to an insidious trend not just in the food world.
Michael Whiteman, the restaurant industry guru who sends out a list of coming restaurant trends each year, calls this dumbelling. When Whiteman (whom I know well) first wrote about the trend, he had fast food in mind in particular the simultaneous drift towards premium items on one side of the menu, and ultra-cheap value items on the other. At McDonalds and other burger chains, the marquee burgers are edging upward to $6 or even more; meanwhile, unspeakably gnarly, $1 burgers occupy the bargain basement. Its not just at McDonalds that this sinister tendency plays out; dumbelling is happening in the culture as a whole, with a Funyun economy existing for the poor, and an heirloom tomato one for the prosperous.
Consider the state of our restaurant life....
(Excerpt) Read more at ideas.time.com ...
My guess is he has no idea what middle class is. Plenty of places to get meals for 2 from $35 to $65.
Author sounds insane.
Go buy $50 worth of stuff and grill it.
The middle class does not spend $50 a meal for one person
We spent $30 for the whole family on pizza, and thats splurging
I must be poor. Wife and I eat good for $50 a week.
I think he meant $50 for one family, which is still mighty high where I live. You can buy an awful lot of beans, macaroni, rice and inexpensive meats for $50.
“My guess is he has no idea what middle class is”
The author lives in New York City, proof that he has no idea what an American is either...
I spent $47 at the grocery store tonight and have enough to feed three people dinner for the next 5 days and enough leftovers for my lunches.
We spend $35 per week, and buy $15 per week of stuff for the grand daughter we babysit.
We also try to grow as much of our own produce as we can like lettuce tomatoes and onions etc. so that we are not feeding pesticides to her or ourselves.
He had his wedding catered by celebrity chefs for FREE and didn’t disclose it in the TIME piece where he wrote about it... But instead gave the chefs tons of free advertising by praising it to high heavens. Dishonest creep.
Seriously, it isn’t hard to drop $40 for a meal at most restaurant chains that are mid-scale - olive garden, chancery, etc. Plenty of 15-18-20 dollar items on the menu for one person, then add in drinks, even tea/sodas - and that will easily propel you over $40.
one large order of fries, one large onion ring order ( 6 onion rings) and 3 of the large plain roast beef sandwiches at Arbys....over $23!!!
I’m thinking he means 50 bucks for a family to eat out, since he menioned Friendly’s and Ground Round. But then again he’s in NYC. For most of America there are lots of Applebees, Chiles, Olive Gardens, etc., not to metion local places around.
Yes he does and it appears that most of the people posting here so far hadn't bothered to read the article.
I'll summarize it for those who are too lazy: The middle-class American restaraunt (and we're not talking Chili's or Appleby's here but actual family restaraunts where you got good food at a reasonable price served by waitstaff and consumed with actual silverware) has pretty much disappeared. It has been replaced by expensive "adults-only" type places on end and fast food on the other.
Please tell us what you bought and what you’re planning to cook with it. I live near DC and I could never manage your feat.
YES, my husband and I can eat out for less than $50 easily...it’s the WINE that costs so much....if we didn’t drink 1-1/2 glasses apiece our weekly meal out would be cheap...and it ain’t hamburgers!
Gnarly Burgers! Gnarly Burgers!
Both date back to when that street was the major highway through the city. Some of the small family-run motels have survived as well.
KFC used to be a decent medium priced fast food place, but these days the prices have just skyrocketed. 3 piece chicken tenders & fries is more than $5.00. And Long John Silvers is even worse. They've got combo platters that are $9.00 now!
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