BK sent me some coupons. Score! There being little else to do around here in the winter, I like to eat in the dining room, rather than wait in the drive up line, get the food, and watch it turn into a block of ice as I drive home.
Monday: tried one BK, where the dining room has been open. Door locked. Tried another BK. Door locked. Tried a Mickey D’s a couple doors from the second BK, that has been open in the past, including Thanksgiving Day. Door locked.
Today: received coupons from Wendy’s. Score! Tried a nearby Wendy’s, who, their web site says, has the dining room open. Went there, and their semi-permanent “dining room closed” sign was out. Drove to a Tim’s a few miles away, whose dining room was open a couple weeks ago. Door locked. With the Wendy’s coupons in hand, tried another Wendy’s, which has been reliably open for several months. Door locked.
Two days in a row, three places in a row, have had their dining rooms closed.
Hard to believe that WalMart can pinch employees away from burger flipping, but that seems to be the case. Maybe the dining rooms will reopen after the stupid season is over?
The Culvers Deluxe meal, mashed potatoes substituted for fries, is pretty much the only fast food I eat, probably twice a month. It is a tasty burger, and the mashed potatoes are good,too. The dining area is always open, they appear to be always fully staffed, or close to it ( granted, twice a month isn’t a deep dive into their operations ). The employees are always polite and seem to enjoy their work somewhat, so I’m thinking they are treated halfway decent. It is almost always busy, the drive thru seems to always have a line snaking around the building, but can always find a booth inside.
I wanted to buy stock in them, but they’re a private company out of Wisconsin, so no luck with that.
That is a bit fancy for me. You have heard of people with “champagne taste and a beer budget”? I have a beer taste, which fits nicely with my cheapskate tendencies.
I actually try to stay away from hamburgers. Mostly visit Wendy’s, Tim’s, and Arby’s for various offerings with grilled chicken or roasted turkey. But now, it’s almost impossible to patronize Wendy’s or Tim’s, and Arby’s is nearly out of roasted turkey. Managed to score a turkey sandwich at Arby’s Monday. Today, I saw that the chicken wrap was back, in place of the turkey wrap, so had that. To my shock and horror, it wasn’t the roasted chicken they had six months ago, but deep fried chicken nuggets, with the veggies and cheese. Today, I checked the Arby’s corporate web site and noticed a banner at the top of the page: “DUE TO SUPPLY, TURKEY UNAVAILABLE ONLINE. LIMITED AVAIL IN-STORE.”
So, I am limited to Mickey D’s or BK burgers, if I can get in the dining room, or Arby roast beef.
You sort of missed the point: there’s nothing much to do around here in the winter. Going out for lunch gets me out of the house, and exercises the car. I like to think my constitution is fairly robust, but the current 29 degrees F outside, it not my idea of a good time.
that meal I referenced is approximately $8, which as far as I know is similar to Wendy’s or BK. Do a once a month dine out at a restaurant or bar, in which you’re paying up for a supposedly better meal, and I like the Culvers burger better than any of the restaurant/bar burgers, and it’s about 1/2 the price of those. But they don’t serve alcohol at Culvers, lol… The restaurant/bar tab easily reaches $50 or $60 for two, and it is just casual but supposed to be a couple of steps up from fast food.
Home cooking tastes better, anyways, and drinks are also a lot cheaper at home,lol, so I don’t miss going out to eat. I guess that is one good thing that came out of the covid pandemic, a lot more healthy eating.
The Mikey D’s that had it’s dining room closed Monday, but open on Thanksgiving Day, offers $16.25. Another one, which is remodeling it’s dining room right now, offers $16.50. The Arby’s where I ended up both Monday and Today, offers $14, but they have reliably had their dining room open.
The cost of living in Michigan is lower than several other places in the country.
Ha! This is likely caused by something much stronger than a repressive communist totalitarian state. It is likely caused by something that is close to a “law of nature” … that’s the “law” that if an enterprise can’t provide a profit, it can’t exist. None of these places are closing down just because they want to or just because they can’t find labor. They are closing down because if they open up, and pay the required price of labor, and pay the increased prices of raw materials, etc, they can’t earn a reasonable profit. And perhaps some of the bigger ones (McD?) are remaining open because they are trying to ride it out so that they still remain when times get better?
And it has little to do with capitalism. In China and Russia, the same “law” applies, if the guy can’t turn a profit at his food stand or his restaurant, that food stand or restaurant will not exist. It really is akin to a law of nature.
I’m watching, hoping, that my favorite Deli is going to reopen, last week he, Paul, had to close, can’t find help, the help he had either found better jobs or whatever, he’s stuck, has been trying to hide for many weeks now… His parents originally began the business at another location, they retired long ago, now in their 90s, and he’s done great, until the Covid mess, but he persisted, take out only, but a few outdoor tables… Costs have skyrocketed, we talk a bit if he can, a case of lettuce was ~$20, now $95, maybe more, and a lot is garbage, even at that price, he had to toss one delivery, couldn’t serve it… I’m not sure what he’s paying the help, but likely pushing $20 or more, and still can’t get help… The few left, really just the key, Emily, really good at all of it, his right hand, is now stuck as well as the couple others I last saw there… My normal visit is on Wednesdays, DW goes to lunch with old lady friends, I go to the Delli… Today, I thought he was going to Open, didn’t happen… Another nearby deli, isn’t really, just a sandwich mill… Maybe In/Out, but in the end Jack won, burger n Jalapeno poppers… McD’s others are open, but we do have a good BBQ Ribs, Sandwich shop across town, may have to head there next week…
Mid 50s is nice. It was in the mid 50s last Saturday, so I took my last turn around Greenfield Village for the season. The Village has no more daytime hours until mid April. The commercial building on the right once housed the Wright brothers bicycle shop. The Wright family home is just beyond it. The second building on the left is where the Heinz condiment company was founded. The Edison research complex is around the corner on the right.
I don’t know know what’’s going on where you are, but I believe you’re overstating it. There’s a McDonald’s just up the road: fully open, regular hours. Had lunch at the Wendy’s yesterday, fully open, regular hours. There’s a Burger King across the street, fully open, regular hours. The lines snake around Starbucks and there are cars parked out front, presumably from people sitting inside. You can’t get near the Chick Fil A for the lines of traffic going in.
Picked up lunch at 5 Guys for a friend last week fully staffed, a half dozen people inside eating. Went to Domino’s last night, fully open, full staff. Mrs. Goofy and a friend went to Bravo last night, no problem.
Every restaurant I have gone to - fast food and otherwise - is open and doing business. And they’re paying $14-$18/hr and seem to be doing fine.
While I live in south Florida, and do recommend it to many people as a good place to retire, I have to say that the terrain is rather uniform here. Sure, it’s quite nice, beaches, lakes, palm trees, etc. But very few places that are like what is depicted in your photo - a place with history, that still appears old-but-also-new, and hearkens back to previous generations.
I’m probably overstating it, but hyperbole is sometimes a useful tool to illustrate something. The crux of the point is that nobody shutters their business if they could be making enough money by keeping it open.
I wonder if it may have to do with small differences in average ticket (the “check” in restaurant parlance) levels? I know the chick-fil-a here always has lines around the parking lot, but I suspect that their ticket level is at least $1, probably $2 higher than most other fast food places. Maybe that makes all the difference. And as I mentioned, McD is huge and has economy of scale and may also be willing to ride out the storm because they’ve been through cycles like this before and know they always come out stronger than the competition (not to mention that their gross profit is indeed growing again since a decline in 2020).
There is a BK here that closed recently. The building stood empty for a few months, but then there was a flurry of construction and remodeling, and suddenly a new Starbucks opened. A very nice, big, new starbucks. Seems to be doing well, good location with lots of people driving by on way to/from work, and a few office buildings right nearby (short walking distance). A couple of decades ago (in the 90s), I worked in a building that had a starbucks right downstairs and the guys would go there each afternoon for coffee, DESPITE having pretty good free coffee in the office!
And, of course, like everything else, it is partly regional. Maybe the cost/revenue/profit structure is different in Michigan when compared to TN or FL?
Sounds to me like Steve is in an economically depressed area. if it’s bad enough, some businesses simply can’t generate enough business to stay open. They need to close. It can be hard for business owners to make that decision.
If a couple of those fast food joints shut their doors, the remaining ones might be able to survive. i suspect that’s the problem rather than “no one wanna work”.