I opened the LA Daily News today to see that Encino's Weiner Factory, opened since 1971, may be replaced by a.... Pinkberry?!
(The photo is from Roadfood.com. It's a great site - check it out.)
Foster Freezes, mom & pop hardware stores, small theaters that once showed double features; Googie motels, diners and coffee shops have been plowed down, boarded up and replaced by the same old stores we can find in Any Mall USA. I don't even like the mall, and now I can't avoid it if I try. It surrounds me. Where the Topanga Theater once stood, more Westfield Mall is creeping over.
Look, even with the heat, the growing traffic, our gang problems - I've been defending the Valley. I figure let people put the Valley down, they just haven't taken the time to look for the cool little finds. But now, so many of those little places are going away. For what? Pinkberry?
My daughter and I passed a Pinkberry in Pasadena one day, and she decided to ask for a sample spoon taste to see what the big fuss is. Being a smart person with critical thinking skills, she's been turned off by the hype by celebrities like Paris Hilton, but she's open-minded and decided to taste for herself. So I went along, too, and gave the trendy goop a try. Other than leaving a bitter aftertaste in my mouth, I found nothing appealing. Which, I have to say, just confirmed to me this stuff is thriving on its trend-factor. Okay, okay... I know, I only had one bite. But I'm stubborn. I'm sure some people truly like it. But is it worth tearing down a neighborhood-loved, decades-old hot dog stand that's proven itself to be able to keep the customers coming? And, besides, doesn't Pinkberry have enough stores (according to Wikipedia there are 28)?
In one corner we have Weiner Factory (with 11 Yelp Reviews) - see how it's rated. In the other corner we have Pinkberry (with 11 Reviews). Okay, so some love Pinkberry, too - I understand; though I tend to agree with Julie E's review. This is hardly a serious study. But, hey! Hasn't Weiner Factory proven itself by serving its devoted customers for almost forty years?
And think about this, Weiner Factory has never needed to court hungover celebutantes who carry dogs around in little bags to stay in business. Heck, most of these so-called-celebrities are anorexic - what the heck do they know about food? If you ask me (and I know you didn't), for that reason alone Weiner Factory should stay put.
That's my rant for the day. Thank you very much! (said in my head like Latka Gravits, who I'm sure would prefer Weiner Factor over some sour, frozen, processed, trendy goop)
*Guess I'm not alone. This is another reason I love Yelp. They're an opinionated bunch.