From Slashfoods: Mayors Promise Free Cheesesteaks and Rock ShrimpThursday, October 23, 2008
If you follow baseball, you may have heard that the World Series starts tonight. If you live in Philadelphia (as I do) or Tampa Bay, it is probably all you're hearing. As is tradition, the political figures from those cities have placed their food bets. Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter has promised to pony up Philadelphia cheesesteaks, Tastykakes, Philly soft pretzels and Mac and Cheese from Delilah's Southern Café (Oprah's favorite). If the Rays win. In return, the mayors from St. Petersburg, Clearwater and Tampa, FL have offered a Florida Beach Picnic that will include coconut shrimp, stone crab claws and Cuban sandwiches.
I think this is a great idea. Food should be used for a celebration. What I find really interesting is the contrast of what these two areas think of as regional favorites. If Philadelphians lived in a warmer climate they would be eating healthier. In the food realm I think Florida is the clear winner.
Grey's Papaya is famous for their recession special:
Long before Manhattan eateries started lowering prices to bring in depressed (and recessed) customers, Gray's Papaya was famous for its amazing "Recession Special." Debuting in the 1990's, the special originally cost $1.95, but rose to its current price of $3.50 in the early 2000's. Consisting of a medium tropical beverage and two hot dogs, the combination of two perfectly prepared hot dogs and a medium fruit drink has become a New York institution and one of the city's best bargains.
Unfortunately, the arrival of a real recession has forced the hot dog retailer to raise the price on its special. In February, seeing the writing on the wall, Gray's founder Nicholas Gray began warning customers that a price increase was on the way. This week, it finally came to pass: the special has now gone up to $4.45.
Even with the increase of $0.95, the special is still a great deal, and a great way to weather economic hard times. Let's just hope that things get better before Gray's has to break $5!