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Opinion: The Most Important Food Innovations Across North America



Look, there’s some very VERY important things happening in the world right now. Without minimizing any of them, it’s also important to know that switching up the subject to something like dinner can certainly do you some good. Sound appealing? Then you’ll love this opinion piece from our NCSD Community Manager, Danny W on what The Most Important Food Innovations Across North America are. You still might get in an argument, but at least it’ll only be over a sushi burrito. 


Methodology: This is an opinion piece of Yelp’s North County San Diego Community Director.

Louis’ Lunch by Jason P. (on Yelp)

Hamburgers – There are several claims to the creation of the hamburger, but in my opinion, Louis Lunch in New Haven Connecticut’s story has the most legs to it. Just Wikipedia “hamburger” and you can decide for yourself. Whoever was behind it definitely needs their own holiday. 

Frozen Margaritas – If you suspected that 7-Eleven Slurpees were part of the inspiration behind this masterful creation by Mariano’s Restaurant, you would have thought right! Grab some chips and salsa and a take selfie in front of their “Home Of The First Frozen Margarita” plaque. Both of those are complimentary!

Sushi Burrito – This movement started back in 2008 in Yelp’s home city of San Francisco. It’s easily the most divisive mention on the list and while Sushiritto fans aren’t exactly throwing boat parades or waving flags, they’re definitely passionate about what they believe in.

Avocado Toast – I’m a Californian and a Millennial so I’m pretty sure if I didn’t mention avocado toast than all 90’s TV shows would suddenly disappear into thin air.  Interestingly enough, avocado toast actually originates from Australia and first made its way to the states on Café Gitane’s menu. 

Cafe Gitane Avocado Toast by Doris C.(on Yelp)

Deep Dish Pizza – It doesn’t take a dietician to know that Chicago-style isn’t exactly good for your waistline. On the other hand, it can easily be justified that local favorites like Pequod’s put so much cheese into their pies that it qualifies as a workout when you pick it up. Right… right?

Buffalo Wings – Any good sporting event watch party owes a great debt of credit to Anchor Bar for the invention of these fan favorites. As for the employers across the country who see record call-offs the day after, well, they’re not as happy.

Dollar Slices – Not sure if this NYC staple necessarily qualifies as a food innovation or not, but at under a buck a slice, what have I got to lose by adding it?

California Burrito – In my opinion, adding french fries to any food improves it, but it hits particularly different with carne asada and San Diego tortillas. Most places that end in -ertos and are open late have a California burrito on their menu, but the true secret ingredient is a night of drinking beforehand. 

California Burrito Filiberto’s Mexican Food (on Yelp)

Jambalaya – Like many great memories that come from the French Quarter of NOLA, there’s no conclusive evidence of how exactly this dish came to be. If you’ve ever had this incredible concoction of sausage, seafood, rice and spices, you already know that it’s a religious experience. 

Totchos – Arguably, nachos could be on this list. Ever since Portland publican Jim Parker’s invention at Oaks Bottom Public House swapped out tortilla chips for tater tots back in 2006, the younger spud-sibling has stolen the show. 

Philly Cheesesteaks – Full disclosure: I’ve never stepped foot in the state of Pennsylvania and had an authentic cheesesteak from the likes of Tony Lukes, or some of the other famous places. That being said, there are few cities in America that don’t have one of these somewhere on a menu, and that speaks volumes about this iconic sandwich.

Philly Cheesesteak from The Original Tony Lukes by Jonathan E. (on Yelp)

Poutine – If you’re looking into relocating after the election results, file this dish in the ‘pros’ column for the town of Drummondville, Quebec. The restaurant Le Roy Jucep holds the trademark of  “l’inventor of de poutine” which I’m fairly sure translates in English to “really smart people, eh?”

       
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