Gratzfood Episode 1: Chick’s Deli

Gratzfeed likes to consider itself a jack of all trades. We bring you music, sports, food, entertainment, current events and whatever the hell else we feel is necessary for your eyeballs to come across. While that’s not going to change anytime soon, there’s been a recent influx in food related content for a few reasons

  1. I love food
  2. Everyone else loves food
  3. I’ll take any excuse to eat food I can get

I realized that while food write ups are cool, I wanted to bring viewers an even closer look at the places I already know and love, or the new places that I’m trying for the very first time. I wanted people to understand the culture, the vibe, the ambience, etc. That’s why I enlisted the help of my close friend Steve Ziegler (shameless plug for Zig Media, -no seriously he’s damn good at what he does, you can watch the video and see for yourself) and set off to capture these places on camera for you all to see. For episode one I decided there was no better place to start than Chick’s Deli, located in my lovely (besides those taxes though am I right?!) hometown Cherry Hill, New Jersey.

Chick’s Deli is the definition of a hidden gem…literally. It’s located behind a main road, Route 70, in this little strip that nobody would see from just driving by. Heck, you could tell Joel Embiid his crush Rihanna was waiting for him there and he still wouldn’t be able to find it. In todays world, everyone is enamored with the superficial aspect of food, the ice cream that’s rolled, fancy looking plates with the little bowls of ketchup instead of the classic packets or bottles, the artsy drizzles that look like Picasso drunkenly decorated your dish. Chick’s forgoes the nonsense and focuses on what really matters, the actual food and it’s quality. No frills, Chick’s Deli is well, a deli, that specializes in hoagies, cheesesteaks and other sandwiches. The majority of their traffic comes from the lunch crowd, people picking up sandwiches for the office, construction workers getting a quick bite on their breaks etc. Rather than pumping out advertisements, they rely on word of mouth and if you ask them they’ll probably tell you it’s worked pretty damn well. For the record, this is not a food review. I have been going to Chick’s for years and have known their food is aces. Instead, this is a glimpse inside one of the areas favorite local gems, the people that make it go and of course the food they serve. Hope you all enjoy, cheers!

Gratzfood Review: Grand Mac

It’s probably not up for debate that there isn’t a more iconic fast food menu in item in America than the Big Mac. So when Mcdonald’s announced that they were introducing the ‘Grand Mac’, an even bigger version of the classic, Gratzfeed was promptly on the scene to investigate. Here we go.

What it’s called: Grand Mac

Cost: $7.39 for the meal (probably around $5.19/$5.39 for just the sandwich but it varies by market)

What is it exactly?: Literally the same thing as a regular Big Mac but bigger. If you don’t know what’s in a Big Mac by now that’s sad, but you can refer to this:

Verdict: It’s a bigger Big Mac. That’s it. I don’t know what I was expecting because it was never really advertised as something different but it’s literally just a bigger Big Mac. Having said that, Big Mac’s are awesome so naturally it was delicious. A lot of reviews I saw before trying it were raving about it but I don’t know if that’s warranted. Yes, it is delicious. But at the end of the day it’s just a bigger Big Mac and we already know how good they are. So how much bigger are we talking? Well, the patties and bun are essentially the same size, just in larger diameter. If the patties are thicker, it’s not entirely noticeable. I thought maybe we would be talking quarter pounder status or something since there was all this hoopla surrounding it but that’s not the case. I’ll put it to you this way, I was definitely full from my meal, but that was because I ate a medium fry too and had a drink. It’s very filling but it’s not some colossal type of monster where you should get your picture on the wall if you finish. I guess I’m also torn because I always like to think of a normal Big Mac as a satisfying sandwich, or at least it should be, but since I finished the Grand Mac without incident I’m thinking where was this before? It’s kinda like when McDonald’s started advertising their nuggets as “made with real white meat”. Yeah, I’m down for real meat but what exactly was going on before? For $7.98, I was full. I’m not complaining, nothing hits the spot like a Big Mac when you’re in the mood. It’s definitely a solid value as far as fast food goes, you will be satisfied. Just don’t go in expecting some behemoth that knocks you into next week.

Side musing: McDonald’s, for the sake of your own business please overhaul the criteria for your employees and overall standard for your restaurants. It’s no secret the fast food giant has struggled recently and everyone knows a lot of it has to do with the sudden fast casual boom. It’s pretty evident that you’re trying to compete with said fast casual restaurants so if that’s the case then step your shit up. Listen, I love ratchet, I think it’s funny and I love seeing people from all walks of life but if you think you’re going to attract the business of some Kale eating millennial named Austin just because the front page of your website says you’re committed to “sustainably sourced coffee” you’re sadly mistaken. Like I said, I don’t give a shit. But other people might be turned off when you get up to the counter and they say “U ready?” instead of “Next, how may I help you?”. As long as my food tastes good I don’t give a turd. I don’t give a fuck if the employees are arguing behind the counter and cursing because, as you can see, I curse too. I appreciate the fact that McDonald’s employs a diverse crowd and gives opportunities and I’m not expecting anyone there to be a former brain surgeon but when I hear words like “artisan” and “activity wristbands” on TV and then go into the place and get WWE Raw, it throws me for a loop. Or, ditch the wannabe healthy schtick and give the people more Grand Macs and crazy shit and just embrace the fact that you serve guilty pleasures. Nobody criticizes Popeyes for selling unhealthy food because they know it, they own it and they don’t try to be anything they’re not. Feel me?

Piggybacking off that: I can’t stress enough that not all McDonald’s are created equally. Some are so good and fresh and some don’t know when to take the fries out of the fryer. Some are clean and at some every single table is dirty. Consistency is key. When I go into Chick Fil A I know I’m getting (pretty much) the same chicken sandwich, smile, and “my pleasure” every single time. Specifically, the McDonald’s on Easton Avenue in New Brunswick might be the worst one of them all. Orders are wrong all the time, long waits, you name it. The lady there once got into a heated argument with my buddy Leo Bronshteyn when he received a 10 piece nugget instead of the 20 piece he ordered. She insisted he ordered the 10 piece. THE 10 PIECE WAS $4.69 AND THE 20 PIECE IS AN EVERYDAY VALUE OF $5 I COULD BE BLACKED OUT ON BATH SALTS AND ABSINTHE AND I WOULDN’T MAKE THE MISTAKE OF ORDERING 10. If you go into a new McDonald’s, it’s ultimately a toss up.

Last thing: Apparently only 1 in 5 millennials have had a Big Mac…sad! No but seriously, try a fucking Big Mac. I was a late bloomer to them too but c’mon if you can vote and rant about American politics then at least be a real American and try a damn Big Mac. #notmymillennials

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It’s still hard for a picture to give it justice, but you can see the Grand Mac is bigger than the classic Big Mac

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Don’t know why the cheese is danglin’ over like that all unmelted but there it is

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Bang bang there’s your Grand Mac, classic delicious taste, just a bit bigger