This is a soapbox post. Some of you won’t like it.
For the most part, I’m anti-chain.
I like authenticity, not ‘let’s take the fettucine alfredo & add a fried chicken breast stuffed with more cheese & ham.” By the way, how is a dish with 74 grams of fat ok? I’m looking at you, Olive Garden ‘Tour of Italy.’
I enjoy food prepared and served by local people, not corporations.
But sometimes I can’t avoid eating in a chain so I try to be choosy. California Pizza Kitchen doesn’t gross me out. I stick to the smashed pea and barley soup (although the sodium is off the charts) and/or the arugula salad with asparagus (even though they serve asparagus out of season–boo).
And it’s cheap.
Bottom line: just because something is popular doesn’t mean that it’s good. When I have a choice, I eat local. Give it a try, yo.