You’re glossy of mane, resolute of purpose and firm of thigh; you know your béarnaise from your bolognese (or your Bovril, for that matter).
You know that cutting thick tranches from a cauliflower doesn’t justify calling them ‘steaks’. You know that serving small portions of assorted world cuisines doesnt equal ‘tapas’. You know ‘clean eating’ and ‘detox diets’ are 2017’s snake oil.
Equally, you know the filthy joys of the ‘morning after’ Dominos, the debased bliss of the 2am elephant leg doner.
In short, you are this blog’s ideal reader. You are a person of rare discernment. You care about food.
You can probably knock up a mean meal, too. But we all need to reach for a substitute every now and then. We can’t all be whipping up tristesse of rhubarb or a sous-vide broccoli tumescence every night of the week.
Which is when the takeaway sounds its siren song.
There was a time the clutch of takeaway literature was a mainstay of every home. The married have them cloistered in a drawer, the single clustered by the phone. Now, of course, they are all at hand on our smartphone screens: one caress of the Just Eat app and we are in business.
All of your favourite places- and a few others you’ve not heard of, too. All available cuisines, all in easy reach. Bangladeshi to burgers, pizza to Persian. O brave new world, that has such portals in it!
But this is the thing. Just Eat just might killing your favourite takeaway. Because that takeaway, though it benefits from exposure to a wider audience through Just Eat than it might otherwise enjoy- in a market in which margins are notoriously slim and failure notably high- Just Eat will carve themselves off a decidedly meaty chunk. Anything from 13% to 19% of your order. Granted, the Just Eat portal gives businesses access to many new customers. Thats a good thing. But handing them vital profit margins isn’t.
You may think- ‘oh I’ll order from a smaller competitor. Stick it to Da Man. Hungry House has a decent roster. Perhaps they trade on more favourable terms, despite their adverts featuring some of the most viscerally annoying human beings in the known cosmos.’
They are, you’ll be unsurprised to learn, the same company. Just Eat’s parent acquired them in November 2016.
So what’s the solution? I’m not suggesting we all go Amish and lob our smartphones in the nearest lagoon. But would it be so bad to pick up a copy of the latest menu and keep it somewhere safe? By the phone, if people still have landlines? In the kitchen drawer? If you find a new favourite takeaway, get them in your favourites. Give them your business directly. If you have a trusted regular, a faithful standby who know you, cut out that middleman. Put more of your money in their hands. You know it make sense.
This blog is a very simple thing.
I won’t try to sell you any hand lotion, exercise programmes, coffee syrups or Patagonian nose flutes. You won’t find tips on dating, ‘wellness’ or yoga mats.
I write because I love it (and food, as indicated by my increasing girth). Greed happens to be my Deadly Sin of choice, but at least it is never shy of providing me with subject matter.
A simple thing, then: all you get is me wittering on semi-coherently about places I’ve eaten at; hence a ‘restaurant blog’ rather than a ‘food blog’, although there are a few recipes scattered throughout.
From mezze to Michelin ‘fine dining’ and all points in between.