As I write, Hurricane Laura is swirling around in the Gulf about 200 miles south-southeast of Lake Charles. I hope that if you live in one of the areas directly affected, you are safe and will remain so. This may seem like an odd time for a humorous blog, but to be honest I don’t have the energy to write something with the sense of gravity that would match the situation and I hope that the snark below will be at least some sort of counterweight to life as we know it in general.
LITTLE CAESARS IS DELIVERING
I have been writing about food for long enough that I get press releases on a regular basis. A substantial number of these are about what I like to call “Batshit Crazy Diets,” or which offer me a chance to interview the author of a book that makes me wonder whether one problem with the economic model of publishing isn’t that publishers don’t know what people want to read?
I don’t really care – I get so much “spam” email overall that the press releases are a drop in the bucket, but I don’t really have any way to work with information about a restaurant opening in Los Angeles, Chicago or New York because my private jet is in the shop and also the pandemic.
And then sometimes I get the sort of press release that just makes me so happy to be alive. Such as the email I got from a publicist whom I’m sure is a lovely person. I will share that release in its entirety, because it is a thing of awful beauty:
Little Caesars made waves in the pizza world earlier this year when they announced that, for the first time in 20 years, the chain was going to be delivering its signature pizzas and Crazy Breads again. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic forced restaurants of all kinds to pump the brakes on their dine-in and delivery plans shortly thereafter, but Little Caesars has managed to dominate the COVID-era chain pizza landscape regardless.
Since the spread of COVID on US shores began in mid-March, Little Caesars has been the preferred pizza provider for residents in 24 states. No other pizza place comes close, with Papa John’s leading the way in just nine states and Domino’s in seven. With such a wide gap in preference, it seems likely that Little Caesars low prices ($5 pizzas) and unique “Hot & Ready” business model that can completely eliminate human interaction from the pizza pick up are key factors in the Detroit-based chain’s pandemic pizza wars success.
Y’all, the pandemic has a bright side! Little Caesars is delivering again! Moreover, like our pal Julius C in Gaul, they are DOMINATING the chain pizza landscape! Why the holy hell anyone would eat that cardboard-crust “pizza” is something I cannot explain, but I assume it is because there are places in this Great Nation that do not have local pizza restaurants.
Fortunately, we do have local pizza restaurants here, and thus we have no need to order from Little Caesars, whether they deliver or not.
And yes, I’m judging you if you like Little Caesars. I am judging you on so many levels. I am judging your palate, because Little Caesars is, in my opinion, just shy of mediocre. It’s edible, but so is toothpaste if you’re desperate and I wouldn’t recommend you eat either. Second, why the hell would you support a chain like Little Caesars when you have so many other options that produce far, far better food?
Off the top of my head I can name several local pizza restaurants that produce pies you will, if you have any sense, enjoy far more than Little Caesars or any of the other chains. Places like Oak Oven, Tavolino, Pizza Delicious, Ancora, Pizza Domenica and even places with multiple locations like Mid City Pizza and Theo’s.
And I am not writing this because I disapprove of the food at national chains generally. I am on record as saying that the sausage egg McMuffin with cheese is one of the most perfect things a human can eat. Chains produce great fried chicken, too. But for Pete’s sake stay away from Little Caesar’s unless you are 8 years old and having your birthday party at Laser Tag or you are 20 and too intoxicated to care what you’re eating.