Overrated regional food


#1

I have traveled a LOT throughout this country for work and for pleasure, and I’m a foodie. Here’s my list of regional classics I have sampled throughout my many travels across the states. Completely opinionated, obviously subjective, my tastes are not yours, and I do not claim to be an authority on food.

So, with the disclaimers out of the way, here are some of the regional specialties I’ve found to be a bit overhyped. I’m basing the “overrated” on quality of taste and how much better the regional specialty was compared to other cities’ versions of it.

Philly Cheesesteaks: I tried half of a Pats and half of a Genos. (both “cheez wit”) Both were “ok” but weren’t mind-blowing. I’ve had cheese steaks that were just as good in a variety of cities, including my own. I ate a Tony Luke’s steak later that week and thought it was pretty mediocre.

Chicago-style Hot Dogs: I visited the “Superdawg” in Chi-town. This is probably just a personal thing, but I’m not a fan of pickles on hot dogs. Also, I found that I don’t really like celery salt or steamed poppy buns. I did enjoy the deep dish from Lou Malnati’s, I felt like I had just eaten a bag of cement mix afterwards. Also, I’ve found that although Chicago is famous for it’s deep dish pizza, most of the more local pizza places served thin crust pies, which were pretty tasty as well. One of my biggest regrets is that I never got a chance to eat one of Chi-town’s famous Italian beef sandwiches.

Anchor Bar Buffalo Wings: I absolutely love buffalo wings. They’re pretty much my favorite appetizer ever. I was expecting some kind of out-of-body experience when I visited the “mecca” of buffalo wings, the Anchor Bar in Buffalo. What I got was… decent buffalo wings. It was here that I learned a valuable lesson. Just because someone did it first, it doesn’t ALWAYS mean they still do it best.

Pink’s hot dogs, LA: Honestly, they were nothing special. Pretty standard hot dog joint imo. It was quite a letdown for me as a hot dog fan. The Kogi truck I sampled the next day and was way better than I expected however, so my LA trip evened out.

New Orleans Muffelattas: Several people recommended me to a place called Napoleon House on my trip to New Orleans. Maybe it’s the fact that I’ve eaten a lot of great deli in my lifetime, but the Muffelatta sandwich I tried from here was just ok. I felt the olive paste was a bit too strong, and the meat was kind of overshadowed. I still love almost everything I’ve ever eaten in New Orleans, but this sandwich they’re pretty well known for is just kinda “meh” imo.

Finally, here are two entries from my own beloved NYC:

NYC Pizza: I have my own favorite local pizza joints in Brooklyn, and Manhattan, but you really can get great pizza all over the country nowadays, NY doesn’t have the monopoly on great pizza anymore. You could get a fantastic pie at local joints anywhere from Philly to Arizona. Even Cali pizza is improving. Also, NYC has its fair share of awful pizzerias, trying to cash in on NYC’s reputation. I’ve been seeing them pop up all over the place. Most notably in Manhattan. Most of the local Brooklyn joints are still pretty great.

NYC Bagels: NYC has great bagels. But anyone can make great bagels. They’re not exclusive to NYC. I’ve had great bagels all over this country. (To be fair, I’ve had some awful ones too.) Honestly, the best bagel I’ve ever eaten came from some random bakery in Canada, of all places. Bagels are just bread. Any good baker can make a good bagel, it’s just NYC has somehow gotten famous for them over the years.

So there we are. Agree/disagree, share your own experiences.

^_-;


#2

I think for a lot of “foodie meccas” it’s more about the atmosphere and culture rather than the actual food. For an experienced foodie especially worship of food kind of gets in the way of enjoying it in general. One for me in particular was:

Splitz Burger

My friend swore by this place, being 1/3lb of meat. Problem was it was overcooked compared to a Vera’s burger which usually does it Med-rare - mew well, the fries were shiiiiit and the garnish…they didn’t even melt the cheese. The let the heat of the burger melt the cheese which is fucking bullshit IMHO. You want to maintain as much burger heat as possible in this food product that is already losing precious heat by the heat theives of lettuce, onions, tomatoes and pickles. Cheese should be melted ON grill or at least in a salamander, and the burger bun toasted or at least warm. Utter fail. However they do have other options of burger such as deer or bison, so that is a plus.

OC


#3

As a foodie you owe it to yourself to check this place out. The front half is the pizza parlor (I worked in the Plainview location) and the back is the italian restaurant. Can’t speak for the latter only ordered pasta once or twice most people come for the pizza which is probably the best pizza I’ve ever had although it’s a little expensive.

Try the buffalo chicken slice if you get the chance from the LIRR in Penn it’s like a 40 minute trip.


#4

i wasnt too impressed with the hyped Omaha steaks. but then again im from Texas so that might have spoiled me.


#5

Yeah, I don’t imagine many Texans order from them, lol

^_-;


#6

I’ve never been to the northeast. :sad:

Here I am thinking that Philly cheese steak and NYC pizza is a life changing experience, but no you just have to burst my fucking bubble.


#7

Any regional pizza imo.

I know this isn’t quite regional, but in Cali sushi is overrated. It’s one of my favorite foods but people are hella too jazzed on it in Cali it seems


#8

Again, it’s subjective. Some people really insist that cheesesteaks from Philly are better than anywhere else, and SOME pizza in NYC is absolutely fantastic.

^_-;


#9

y’all makin me hungry…

Please try Bon Chon wings!


#10

I have. They’re pretty tasty, and actually go pretty good with the pickled white radish chunks they serve.

Lol Koreans, even their fried chicken has no breasts or thighs!

^_-;


#11

Any chinese food anywhere.


#12

Hey, hey!

I love cats.

As I see it.


#13

I don’t eat peasant food.


#14

Ambrosia is overrated.

As I see it.


#15

LOL. Good one.

So is there any clam chowder out there that’s better than New England’s?


#16

I’m not quite sure why people think sushi in Cali is better than sushi anywhere else to begin with. Sushi can only be as good as the fish you catch, it’s not like Cali has better fish than anywhere else in the world.

^_-;


#17

My parents said NYC Pizza is amazing. I’ve heard many people say it’s due to the water they use.

I’ve had Philly Cheesesteaks. Pats and Genos were both amazing but nowhere near the hype…I hear it’s all about the pulled pork sandwiches now

Chicago deep dish pizza is fucking CHRONIC I must say

I dunno about Anchor Buffalo wings, but some of the best Buffalo Wings I have ever had, were from Buffalo.


#18

I want to say Iowa steaks shit on everyone else’s, but it sounds like we’re talking restaurants here and there are no good steak restaurants around here at all.

As for overrated, I’m going to say southern cajun and get flamed for it. It’s good don’t get me wrong but I’ve heard people say cajun anywhere else is crap, when they’re not too different.


#19

Yeah I’ve heard it’s all about the water as well. Not sure how much I buy into that, but it is true that NYC has very high quality tap water. Some people would be surprised to hear it, but NYC tap water is among the purest tap waters on Earth. It’s better than some bottled waters.

^_-;


#20

Bottled water is far from pure so that’s not much of a comparison, but yeah I’ve heard the same thing about NYC water.