Applebee’s Commits Food Fraud

26Aug09

crapplebeesFirst off, let me accept my shame by admitting that I have again committed a food sin, this time by knowingly and willingly taking in a dinner at crApplebee’s, the notoriously dull chain that seeps everything I loathe about suburban blandness. Lured in by a dining companion, we elected offerings from the current $20 promo (1 app, 2 entrees). We selected onion rings, whatever former roadkill he ate and shamefully, the riblets. Then we were presented with three piles of pig slop shoveled on top of sheets of paper (so they don’t have to wash dishes) that were then dropped on plastic plates. Apparently they consider this pre-heaved chow as suitable human-grade feed in the alternate suburb universe where this crap thrives.

The O-Rings: Surprisingly, they are quite crunchy, being well suited to the flash to life in the fry bin. Not surprisingly was the fact that it was obvious that the fry oil could be carbon dated to the Paleozoic era. Overly greasy is one thing, but my chief complaint: the falsely created mound of crunchy onion rings is served up on a disguised domed plate designed to fool the eye. Check it out. This is how stupid Applebee’s thinks says you are, and this is what is getting them added to The List. Instead of serving you a proper 20-ringed mound, you get 10 stacked upon a tricked out plate to pump up your perception of a generous portion. Also take note of the slashing marks where other diners have clearly attempted to a) take out their frustrations on the fine dining wear b) pop the inflated plate c) dig their way out of the booth, with an escape route through China.

domed applebees plates

The Riblets: Ever wonder what a riblet is? Well the good news is that it is a legitimate piece of the pig. Unfortunately it’s also the most pitiful section of the sow, which actually used to be discarded during butchering, probably because it consists mostly of bone and sinewy connective tissue, not tasty glistening pork shreds like you’d hoped. Applebee’s must get these pickings for good deal from Sam, since they are not widely used. These paltry pork pieces are then topped off with a generous slathering of barbecue sauce so you can bite into this monstrosity without warning. This is good reminder to make sure your dentist’s number is in your phone book.

While there is something to be said for consistency (we are noted Denny’s Devotees), this flaired up bootharama uses a variety of tricks and treats to make you believe it’s as sweet and lovely as local diner should be. It’s not that living in a cul-de-sac is an unforgivable foodie crime, it’s just that somehow being exposed to all those Walgreens and spacious, ample and free parking lots clearly burns off your taste buds. Otherwise, how can such a shitshack succeed in today’s marketplace? The food is below marginal at best and the price is equivalent to countless other real neighbourhood eateries. You make the choice with your food dollar – to select dining at a locally owned joint, with fresh ingredients from local suppliers, or to choose a pre-made meal which goes from freezer to fryer just before being tossed on a plate with a logo. Is it just because of those comfy booths and the charming photos of the high school soccer team? Are you teased by those sexed up staged food porn ads that show close-ups of (teeny tiny) steaks, glossy with shellacked drizzled goodness? Or are you lured in by commercials with Aidan’s drawling invites to come meet with him (despite his tragic Rick Springfield hair), remembered fondly as Carrie’s ex, the kindly furniture maker whose heart was broken by the shoe whore?

john corbett

Let this Fatty be the last victim to be sacrificed. I implore you… this is fraud – simply food fraud! Save yourself the Pepto Bismol moment and don’t fall for the trapplebees at crApplebees.

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