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Tom34's Profile

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Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

"offshoring tech support to other countries"

Interestingly enough this didn't work out so well for Dell.

about 9 hours ago
Tom34 in Not About Food

Good vs. Bad Pizza: Is there such a huge difference?

Ellis Island is the key to NYC/NJ/Phila pizza. Thats where they landed, NYC is where they worked at their relatives shop and with the graces of "you know who" they were eventually allowed to open a shop of their own, just not next to uncle Sal's.

"You know who" no longer has the iron grip it did back in the day but every Italian pizza shop owner I know got their start in NYC or their relative who taught them did. If you trace back far enough the original group is probably not that big.

about 11 hours ago
Tom34 in General Topics

Good vs. Bad Pizza: Is there such a huge difference?

Big Green Egg or a Weber Kettle filled with lump and a pizza stone will work.

about 11 hours ago
Tom34 in General Topics

Good vs. Bad Pizza: Is there such a huge difference?

Fresh made hand tossed dough, homemade sauce and top quality Grande cheese all put together by an experienced pizza person will vary a little from pizza parlor to pizza parlor but will usually be very good.

The stuff from the chains, not so good and often terrible.

about 11 hours ago
Tom34 in General Topics

How they prepare meats and fish at restaurants

I think some folks have hit on a few key things, IE side dishes being a particular concern. Sauces are another area of concern.

A thin oil coating on proteins is most likely for non stick & moisture retention. A good % of it is probably cooked off.

Sep 28, 2014
Tom34 in Chains

Is Five Guys Really the Best Fast-Food Chain?

I am not sure exactly where the cut off is but $10.00 can buy some nice ingredients and making/cooking burgers on a gas grill is both fast and easy.

Sep 28, 2014
Tom34 in Features

Is Five Guys Really the Best Fast-Food Chain?

My brother managed a BK back in the 1970's. Just like McD's, BK cooked to order or as close as you could come to it and it was juicy and delicious.

Between the need for speed and the health guru's they just aren't as good. I think 5 guy's burgers are better but not enough to justify almost double the price.

Roy Rogers was the bomb!

Sep 28, 2014
Tom34 in Features

Is Five Guys Really the Best Fast-Food Chain?

Not much more than a $5 - $6 McDonald's 1/4 lb value meal. Hell with coupons that arrive several times a month the above comes down to about $4.00.

5 guy's is $10.00 or better.

Sep 28, 2014
Tom34 in Features

Is Five Guys Really the Best Fast-Food Chain?

Maybe its just bad luck on my part but soggy fries are my experience too. On the other hand, never had bad McDonald's Fries.

Sep 28, 2014
Tom34 in Features

Continued Feedback on Moderation Changes, and More Guidance for Bloggers

Yeah, too many ways to fix this problem, if they see it as a problem!

Sep 27, 2014
Tom34 in Site Talk

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

I don't know. As I have said, IMHO, impact will be on a case by case basis with many factors coming into play.

Sep 27, 2014
Tom34 in Not About Food

5 Guys Burgers and Fries: Still don't see what the big deal is?

The answer is not so simple. Choice marbling scores range from small, modest or moderate. Many of the branded products such as CAB specify modest or higher where as the commodity choice includes the small marbling category. This means a case of commodity choice has a 1/3 chance of grading small which is just barely above select. Won't know until you break a case which is why many fine dining restaurants pay the up charge for the premium branded choice products.

As for the CAB burgers, there are several blends available, one of which was brought to market to compete with Lafrieda's custom blends which is a pretty high standard in the burger world.

Sep 27, 2014
Tom34 in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

I don't know John. What I do know is that for every high volume/profit FF store, there are 1 or more marginal stores. To some extent, I could see consolidation and maybe even more automation.

Case in point. A friend owns a Friendly's restaurant. Took him over a million dollars to get it up and going and he clears about $200K a year. This may seem like a big number to many people but factor in capital investment, extremely long work hours and the ever constant threat of a competitor opening a new shiny place near him and the picture is not really all that good.

In this case, lets just say significantly increasing wages and benefit costs make the restaurant unprofitable. Who is going to reimburse the owner who has his life savings invested in the business.

IMHO, studies on either side of this subject don't paint the full picture.

Sep 27, 2014
Tom34 in Not About Food

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

The same thing has happened at our local Homedepot.

Sep 27, 2014
Tom34 in Not About Food

Crabbing, Fishing, Hunting, etc. in NJ

She is a beautiful boat. Wide catamaran, extremely stable, little lower to the water for easier fish lifting and with close to 3000 Horsepower capable at cruising at 25 knots compared to the standard 12 to 15 knots most party boats cruise at.

Capt. John also owned several commercial boats and 1/2 of Viking Village. Unlike many Captains, he was always willing to burn diesel and throw as much chum as it took to show everybody a good trip.

Sep 27, 2014
Tom34 in New Jersey

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

The question for me is are the poor better off with abundant low wage jobs that get them out of the house working and then receiving help from government programs to make up the difference OR do we dramatically increase wages and benefit costs and "possibly" see those jobs vanish to "some" extent. I just don't think its as simple as many folks think.

Sep 26, 2014
Tom34 in Not About Food

5 Guys Burgers and Fries: Still don't see what the big deal is?

The CAB's come fresh, not frozen and they will hold about 2 weeks in the sleeves they come in. With proper care, a restaurant should never have to freeze them and they are the best pre-made burgers I have ever had.

Sep 26, 2014
Tom34 in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Call me an old fashion prude, but I don't think this is appropriate. "Mom Bakes Vagina Cookies For 2nd Graders"

When I was a kid the best we could do was a peek at dad's playboys which were very mild to say the least compared to whats readily available today. Couple key strokes today and kids can see just about anything in movie form so I don't think they would be shocked or gain any knowledge from porn cookies.

Having said that, IMHO, for a mother to bring something like those cookies into a school shocks the conscious. Makes one wonder what goes on in that house.

Sep 26, 2014
Tom34 in Food Media & News

Crabbing, Fishing, Hunting, etc. in NJ

Caught my first trout at age 3. After that it was bass, pickerel, carp, catfish, sunny's and just about anything that swims in a lake. When we got a little older my dad started taking us salt water fishing.

The season would start off winter floundering in wooden row boats with a kicker on the back rented from Baxter's in Ship Bottom, LBI. Then it was off to the Delaware Bay where we rented boats from Anderson's in Fortescue. Back then the weakfish & flounder were stacked up like cord wood. Eventually my dad bought a boat in the 1970's which we ran every weekend.

As we got older, dad brought us blue fishing mostly on the Miss Barnegat Light with the late Capt. John Larson at the wheel. I developed a friendship with Captain John and fished commercially 3 to 5 nights a week bringing thousands of lbs of blues to the market every week. Continued every spring/summer/fall while in college.

Have enjoyed blue water fishing, mostly in FL where the Gulf Stream is within easy reach. Super fresh Mahi Mahi is hard to beat.

Getting my daughters into Flounder fishing. Weakfish are all but gone in the Delaware Bay and blues have been scarce since Sandy. Hope the Stripers pay a visit this year.

Sep 26, 2014
Tom34 in New Jersey

Call me an old fashion prude, but I don't think this is appropriate. "Mom Bakes Vagina Cookies For 2nd Graders"

You just can't make this sh*t up!

Sep 25, 2014
Tom34 in Food Media & News

Continued Feedback on Moderation Changes, and More Guidance for Bloggers

I smell $$ for Chow.

Sep 25, 2014
Tom34 in Site Talk
1

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

Sadly enough you are correct but to "some extent" that is a supply and demand problem linked to a growing population of low skilled people who do not have a H.S. diploma / non fluff college degree or marketable trade skill.

Sep 25, 2014
Tom34 in Not About Food

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

Dramatically increasing the Minimum wage is a very emotionally charged topic as is providing healthcare for low skill low wage employees. As you correctly pointed out with what appears to be professional knowledge, it is a very complicated subject with many variables.

Sep 25, 2014
Tom34 in Not About Food

5 Guys Burgers and Fries: Still don't see what the big deal is?

Many of the bars in NJ serve an 8oz Certified Angus Beef burger w/fries for under $10. Many of the diners grind their own and the price is similar.

Sep 25, 2014
Tom34 in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

5 Guys Burgers and Fries: Still don't see what the big deal is?

In the category of FF burgers cooked well done, I would give the nod to 5 Guys over BK & McDonalds. On the other hand, I like McDonalds fries much better.

In my neck of the woods, at a bar or diner, $15.00 will get you a high quality 8 oz burger cooked to order with expensive toppings like bacon , big pile of fries & a soda and will also cover tax and 20% tip.

Sep 25, 2014
Tom34 in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

I don't think the level of wealth you refer to has much stake in this. FF Franchise owners "typically" do well if they have the right LLL but they rarely fall into the super rich class. One of the largest holders of stocks are pension funds which require returns on their investments to meet their obligations to retired workers. Growth is even more critical to 401's.

The big question is how much of an increase can the average FF restaurant or any business that has a low wage model absorb?

Price increases will be passed along to the patron which in this case is disproportionately people below the poverty level. Same group will also bear the burden of job losses.

Sep 25, 2014
Tom34 in Not About Food

Curent best vacuum sealer?

Thom Dolder's company PMG was one of the first sellers of the original Foodsaver and Thom worked closely with the engineers who designed it. He bought the rights to produce it after the channel style machines hit the big retail markets and he changed the name to Vacufresh & then Vacupack. Thom would be the guy to ask. He is easy to reach by phone.

Unlike today's cheap throwaways, those older machines, both the nozzle and the channel styles were designed to be repaired and with proper care could last a lifetime. Thom still sells parts for them.

Sep 24, 2014
Tom34 in Cookware

Curent best vacuum sealer?

The first generation was a nozzle machine that had a plug on the bottom, dial on the right for seal time and a dial on the left top for using the jar attachment. Air was drawn out of a nozzle in the center.

The second generation was a channel machine. PMG Vacupack may have some info on it. I am pretty sure it also had a knob on it.

Sep 23, 2014
Tom34 in Cookware

Leave Guy Fieri alone: Why he has nothing to do with the Food Network’s decline

I agree, I am just not into all that flash/noise/drama. My 2 daughters give me enough of that and their a lot harder to turn off than the idiot box.

Sep 22, 2014
Tom34 in Food Media & News

Leave Guy Fieri alone: Why he has nothing to do with the Food Network’s decline

Your dating yourself with Hazel. The problem with shock value is eventually it wears off & then what?

Sep 22, 2014
Tom34 in Food Media & News