To paraphrase Allen Ginsberg: Little Rock, I’ve given you all and now I’m nothing. I’m addressing you.
The Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau has released their restaurant sales numbers, and once again the Chick-Fil-A on Markham was the top-grossing restaurant in Arkansas’ capital city with $4.63 million in total sales. That’s a lot of cruddy chicken sandwiches and pre-frozen waffle fries. There are two other Chick-Fil-A locations in the top ten. That’s a hell of a lot of cruddy chicken sandwiches.
The top local joint, Big Orange Midtown, comes in with around $2.9 million. Respectable, but a fraction of what soggy, gay-bashing chicken earns. I’ve nearly had to hit the artisanal, small-batch whiskey early today as a result.
So here’s your Friday Five open line. As always, feel free to talk amongst yourselves about any old thing you want. Prediction: someone will tell me to keep politics off the food blog. Further prediction: This will not bother me, because Chick-Fil-A stinks on ice.
Oh, and my five things? Here they are:
*Eat Local: Why send your money to College Park, Georgia (the headquarters of Chick-fil-A)? Spend your hard-earned dollars with local restaurants and keep the money in our community.
*Eat Local: Eating at local places that source ingredients from local farms and producers is even better. Not only does your money support restaurants invested in our town, those restaurants then turn around and support our neighbors that are growing the very food we eat from the fine Arkansas soil.
*Eat Local: Who owns Chick-fil-a? Did you know the answer without Google? Who owns South on Main (my most favorite restaurant of all time)? Yeah, Matt Bell does. Those sorts of relationships enrich our lives.
*Eat Local: What tastes better, pre-frozen chicken patties or fresh, farm-raised chicken? No brainer. Local ingredients are fresher, and you better believe you’re going to get a better product when you can look the person who grew or raised it in the eye. The local farmer that does not pay attention to quality isn’t going to be in business long.
*Eat Local: Chick-fil-a did nothing to fuel our current downtown renovation boom. Local restaurants did. All that Chick-fil-A on Markham has done is create a traffic snarl at Park Plaza. Support businesses that support Little Rock. Elevate our city. Do it for reasons of health, do it to support local, do it because Chick-Fil-A is the fast food arm of a homophobic Southern Baptist Convention. Do it because we can do better.
Over to you.