Happy post-Labor Day. ICYMI, here’s an incredibly engrossing profile of New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells from the New Yorker. Quotable quote:
A review of a bad restaurant seems to expand its writer’s reach more than an unhappy review of a book or a film. A restaurant can deceive, humiliate, and poison us in a way that "Zoolander 2" cannot. In the case of Guy’s American Kitchen, readers were shown two compelling, class-tinged power struggles: one involved an absent, wealthy celebrity and his exploited customers; the other set the institution of the Times against the institution of Guy. As Wells put it, "One would not think they exist in the same universe. It’s like Deadpool on ‘Downton Abbey."
In more food news today: how to get free Chick-fil-A breakfast; the pumpkin spice latte grows up; how to eat fair food without actually going to the fair; and sweet beignet action.
— Chick-fil-A is giving away free breakfast this week, in the form of a chicken biscuit, chicken minis, or the new grilled chicken breakfast sandwich. The catch? You have to download the chain’s new app.
— Dunkin’ Donuts is serving a kinder, gentler pumpkin spice latte. The chain is testing an unsweetened pumpkin "flavor shot" in DC, Baltimore, and Providence, meaning customers can get pumpkin-flavored coffee that presumably still actually tastes like coffee.
— Worlds are colliding: Mario Lopez a.k.a. A.C. Slater visited Chicago’s Saved by the Bell-themed pop-up restaurant over the weekend. (Amazingly, Lopez does not seem to have aged one bit since the show went off the air in 1992.) The pop-up runs through the end of the year if you want to check it out for yourself.
— Want ridiculous deep-fried fair food without actually braving the fair? Craigslist to the rescue: A guy in St. Paul will hop on his bike and deliver any fair food to hungry/lazy folks within a 5-mile radius. That’s almost as good as the tween who charged people money to wait in line at Franklin Barbecue.