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Monday, February 18, 2013

Which sport reigns supreme in each major league city? - Hardball Talk

Three of the more interesting cases:

Philadelphia: I really don’t know. All sports, to be sure. But it may very well be a baseball town more. There are no shortage of Philly people here, so you tell me. Gun to my head I say the Phillies and Eagels are close, but I don’t know if that’s been the case for all that long a time.

...

Minneapolis: I assume the Vikings. Gleeman should weigh in, though. Youth hockey may trump it all.

Milwaukee: It’s over 100 miles to Green Bay, but I bet it’s still more Packers than Brewers. If you disqualify the Packers for distance it’s the Brewers by default. Still a great baseball town, though. It’s not the Brewers fault that people go Packers crazy.

still hunting for a halo-red october (in Delphi) Posted: February 18, 2013 at 09:07 PM | 176 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. vortex of dissipation Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:21 PM (#4371628)
Seattle: I really don’t know, but given that they’ve sent away a baseball team and a basketball team to other cities in the past, the Seahawks probably by default.


Sounders.
   2. JRVJ Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:28 PM (#4371630)
This is a very interesting discussion. The city I know best is Philly, and I think that it's really open between the Phillies and Eagles.

The Phillies clearly were on the rise until the 2012 season, when they disappointed Philly fandom. But then the Eagles s-ucked even worse, and while the Phillies are not as strong as they were, they do have a chance to go to the playoffs if Halladay-Lee-Hammels are what they were in 2011 (and if Utley is Utley, and if Howard is not a carcass, and if the OF produces something, etc., etc.).

The one relevant fact that I see is that the Phillies did prove that they are a financial superpower (or phrased differently, that the Delaware Valley has revenue streams that can be tapped in such a way that the Phillies can be in the upper financial reasons of the industry). And since their TV deal is up in a couple of years (I think in 2015), that bodes VERY well for the Phillies long term.
   3. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:30 PM (#4371632)
For Green Bay, Wisconsin, I'm going to say kickboxing.
   4. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:32 PM (#4371633)
I was surprised to find, upon arriving in MPLS, that this is at least as much a baseball town as a football town. The Twins have a very deep and solid following.
   5. Into the Void Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:33 PM (#4371634)
I disagree with Oakland. I would go Warriors > A's > Raiders.
   6. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:37 PM (#4371637)
Detroit: Great baseball town, but they seem to live and die with the Wings more. My relatives who live there all do anyway. I could be persuaded that Detroit is primarily a baseball town, though.

Nope it's the Wings. Tigers are a strong second though.

Lakers of course lap the field here.
   7. Tom Nawrocki Posted: February 18, 2013 at 11:41 PM (#4371639)
Denver: Skiing. Unless you're limiting it to spectator sports, in which case it's clearly the Broncos.
   8. Cooper Nielson Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:16 AM (#4371649)
Craig's choices seem to be pretty good. My two cents based on places I've lived:

DETROIT: Underrated as an all-sports town, Detroit/Michigan supports all of its teams pretty well, even the Lions (they kinda hate-watch them, but they still watch them). Hockey probably wins in terms of hard-core fans, but I think there might be more breadth of support for the Tigers -- especially when they're good. I think Robert is right that the Tigers are a "strong second."

SAN FRANCISCO: I lived there from 1995-2000 and at the time it was definitely a 49ers town, even though the Giants were better and demographically it would seem that San Franciscans would be more partial to genteel, intellectual baseball than macho, warlike football. Obviously since I left SF, lots of things have happened -- PacBell/AT&T Park was built (I was there for one season) and the Giants won two World Series. So I wouldn't be surprised if SF is now a baseball town. But the Niners are good again...

OAKLAND: Gotta be the Raiders, even though the A's have been more successful and never left for Los Angeles. A's fans are great, but not numerous. Casual/front-running baseball fans probably prefer the Giants now.

TORONTO: Yeah, no doubt it's the Leafs.
   9. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:56 AM (#4371654)
cleveland = browns
   10. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:59 AM (#4371656)
I think KC is secretly a baseball town, and it definitely was 20 years ago. I don't know if the Royals decades of suckitude have killed that off for good. But from 1975-1988, there was no one tailgating for Chiefs games, and Royals games were the cool place to be. It will be interesting to see how people respond if the Royals ever got good again. The Chiefs have burned a few bridges during the Pioli era - if the Royals had capitalized by being good, they could have won the town over again.

The professional sport Atlanta follows the most is SEC football.

I think if the Cardinals ever had an extended losing period (they've frankly had an amazing run of about half a century), the town would be a hockey town. The Blues are huge there.
   11. Curse of the Andino Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:05 AM (#4371659)
The Orioles got a lot of affirmation late in the season when a number of their players were cheered quite loudly by the crowd at a late-September Ravens game. It's not close (and even when Camden Yards sold out every night, it wasn't the same fans).
   12. Curse of the Andino Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:08 AM (#4371661)
The professional sport Atlanta follows the most is SEC football.


This is also true of Tampa (though they are torn between the Gators/FSU; they stand united in their hatred of Miami).
   13. puck Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:08 AM (#4371662)
Denver: Skiing. Unless you're limiting it to spectator sports, in which case it's clearly the Broncos.

Is it skiing? I seem to know of a lot more cyclists, runners, hikers.
Yeah, for spectator sports no one's close to the Broncos.
   14. puck Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:10 AM (#4371664)
Sounders.

How do their tv ratings compare to the Seahawks? I'd be surprised if it's close.
   15. Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:13 AM (#4371666)
Detroit is underrated is an all-sport city. The Wings might be number one in the city but that's because they are so well-run that they've been really good for like 25 years. I don't know that they'd have a ton of support if they ever struggle. The Lions have one playoff victory and they are still very well-supported. I actually think if the Lions could ever be consistently good, it'd be a football town.
   16. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:16 AM (#4371667)
In terms of pro sports, other than St. Louis and maybe Boston (baseball), and Pittsburgh and Washington (football), pretty much every city's preferences are determined by the relative success of their teams, and pretty much every city's preferences go in cycles. Go through the list of Major League cities and try to find any other than those four who haven't switched preferences over the years.
   17. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:46 AM (#4371671)
So I wouldn't be surprised if SF is now a baseball town. But the Niners are good again...


Nah, it's always the Niners. They are like the Red Wings in Detroit. They've been good for long periods at a time over many years and have support of the entire bay area. People in San Jose and Walnut Creek are Niner fans. Not necessarily Giant fans.
   18. Tim Raines Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:54 AM (#4371672)
The Lions are the clear number-one team in Detroit. Hockeytown? More like Frontrunnertown. When the Wings were bad, you could shoot a cannon through Olympia without hitting anybody. It's the same with the Tigers. The Pistons might as well not even exist when they're down. But Detroit cares about the Lions, even when they're bad. When they win a championship again, the celebration will dwarf anything we've seen for the other teams.
   19. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:08 AM (#4371674)
I think I know more Detroit sports fans than any other variety except Philly and Pittsburgh, and they barely ever say anything about the Lions. During football season they talk more about UM football than the Lions. This has been the case for as long as I can remember knowing these people. (10 years?)

Assertions about what would happen if the Lions had a great team sound kind of like speculations about what will happen to Portugal when King Sebastian returns.
   20. Into the Void Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:14 AM (#4371675)
Nah, it's always the Niners.


I don't know by what criteria these types of things can be judged on besides attendance but living in the city, people seemed way more excited about the Giants being in the World Series than the Niners in the Super Bowl, and the Giants were just there two years ago. I think with the Giants recent success they've become a bit more popular. Though maybe it has to do with the Niners moving soon.
   21. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:17 AM (#4371677)
How do their tv ratings compare to the Seahawks? I'd be surprised if it's close.


It's definitely a Seahawks town, but the Sounders may be a solid #2. If the Mariners ever did something interesting it might be a different story.
   22. BrianBrianson Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:24 AM (#4371679)
In terms of pro sports, other than St. Louis and maybe Boston (baseball), and Pittsburgh and Washington (football), pretty much every city's preferences are determined by the relative success of their teams, and pretty much every city's preferences go in cycles. Go through the list of Major League cities and try to find any other than those four who haven't switched preferences over the years.


Toronto? Toronto?! TORONTO?!?! Now, the Raptors have never really had success, but the Jays couldn't get passed 'em (and the Argos certainly can't, despite a ton of success, though perhaps they're a special case).
   23. Jim Wisinski Posted: February 19, 2013 at 03:51 AM (#4371690)
Chicago: This is an interesting one. I feel like it’s a Bears city, but I’d like to hear arguments on it. Walking around there in the summer and the city just reeks baseball, so it’s probably closer than I imagine.


I think the most accurate way to put it would be that Chicago is a baseball town but its most popular team is the Bears because fan loyalty isn't split between two teams like it is with baseball.
   24. clowns to the left of me; STEAGLES to the right Posted: February 19, 2013 at 04:03 AM (#4371691)
And since their TV deal is up in a couple of years (I think in 2015), that bodes VERY well for the Phillies long term.
iirc, the phillies own the channel that broadcasts the bulk of their games, so unless i'm missing something, their revenue may very well be maxed out there.
   25. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: February 19, 2013 at 06:38 AM (#4371698)
Didn't we have this conversation recently?

Detroit is underrated is an all-sport city. The Wings might be number one in the city but that's because they are so well-run that they've been really good for like 25 years. I don't know that they'd have a ton of support if they ever struggle. The Lions have one playoff victory and they are still very well-supported. I actually think if the Lions could ever be consistently good, it'd be a football town.

So much this. If the Lions were ever any good, they would own Detroit. Own it. (Imagine if the Lions had been as successful as the Red Wings the last two decades: perennial contender, numerous playoff wins, a Super Bowl title or three. Detroit sports radio would never talk about anybody else, ever.)

It would be interesting to see what would happen to the Red Wings' level of support if the team drifted into mediocrity, as they seem to be doing this mini-season. Not their 70s/80s level of suckitude -- just mediocrity. Hell, they haven't even been able to sell out playoff games lately.

Nobody cares about the Pistons.

And the Tigers -- well, they've been solid contenders for six of the last seven years now, and should be for at least the next couple. This has never really happened for this franchise before; the only other time you could've said, "Detroit can win the World Series" for more than a few years would be 1983-88, or perhaps in the 1930s. They're winners, and they play in a relatively new ballpark. Let's win it all this year, boys...bless you.

   26. John Northey Posted: February 19, 2013 at 07:10 AM (#4371699)
Toronto #1-#10 is the Leafs, Leafs, Leafs, Leafs, Leafs, Leafs, Leafs, Leafs, Leafs and Leafs. Then comes the Jays, then probably the Rock (Lacrosse - the actually sell out the hockey arena for this), Toronto FC soccer, Raptors and Argos. I'm kind of surprised we don't see more media coverage of the lacrosse team as there is a clear fanbase there. Raptors climb when they are in playoff contention to the Jays level but when they suck (as they have for awhile) there are a niche market just like the Rock are.
   27. The District Attorney Posted: February 19, 2013 at 08:04 AM (#4371705)
then probably the Rock (Lacrosse - the actually sell out the hockey arena for this)
Did not know that. I guess people smell what they're cooking.

Didn't we have this conversation recently?
Yeah. My question is, which cuisine reigns supreme in each major league city. My guesses:

Baltimore - crab cakes, Boston - chowdah, New York - bagels, Tampa Bay - the Early Bird special, Toronto - moose, Chicago - wind, Cleveland - regret, Detroit - bullets, Kansas City - barbecue, Minneapolis - lutefisk, Dallas - beef, Houston - more beef, Los Angeles - self-satisfaction, Oakland - can't afford food, Seattle - coffee, Atlanta - grits, Miami - mojitos, Philly - cheesesteak, Washington - pork, Cincinnati - chili, Milwaukee - cheese, Pittsburgh - steel, St. Louis - bad beer, Denver - weed, Phoenix - dust, San Diego - not a real place, San Francisco - Rice-a-Roni
   28. Bitter Mouse Posted: February 19, 2013 at 08:42 AM (#4371709)
Minneapolis - lutefisk,


It is the "local" food most talked about, but I have lived here many years (in three stints - the latest since 1991)and I have never even seen it.

Oh and the Twins have a special place here for winning two championships, but it is a Vikings town.
   29. Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:03 AM (#4371711)
Go through the list of Major League cities and try to find any other than those four who haven't switched preferences over the years.
Other than when they didn't exist, the Browns have been a dominant #1 in Cleveland at least since the mid-to-late 1950s. The Indians and Cavs have traded places at #2, largely based on who's less putrid at any given moment.

The Reds have always been a solid #1 in Cincinnati, though the Bengals have never been really good at the same time the Reds were really bad. The NBA and WHA have come and gone, but it's always been Reds>Bengals>everything else.
   30. Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:13 AM (#4371717)
Also, Cleveland food is very Slavic. Hungarian and Polish, primarily.
   31. TerpNats Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:20 AM (#4371720)
With a sustained run of success over the rest of the decade (and a World Series title or two), the Nationals could very well dent into the Redskins' dominance. The Skins largely copped top honors by default, having at least a 30-year plus edge in residency over the other teams (the Bullets/Wizards moved from Baltimore in 1973, the Capitals began play the following year; neither has been a dominant franchise save for the Bullets in the late '70s). You can make a good argument that the D.C. area has more interest in college basketball (Maryland men and women, Georgetown, George Mason and to a lesser extent George Washington and American) than in the NBA or NHL. College football interest should also increase in 2014, after Maryland leaves the putrid ACC for the more high-profile Big Ten.
   32. BochysFingers Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:53 AM (#4371725)
SAN FRANCISCO: I lived there from 1995-2000 and at the time it was definitely a 49ers town, even though the Giants were better and demographically it would seem that San Franciscans would be more partial to genteel, intellectual baseball than macho, warlike football. Obviously since I left SF, lots of things have happened -- PacBell/AT&T Park was built (I was there for one season) and the Giants won two World Series. So I wouldn't be surprised if SF is now a baseball town. But the Niners are good again...


Oh, SF is most definitely the Giants' town now. Even with the Niners going to the Super Bowl, the enthusiasm didn't come close to the Giants' run in 2012.

OAKLAND: Gotta be the Raiders, even though the A's have been more successful and never left for Los Angeles. A's fans are great, but not numerous. Casual/front-running baseball fans probably prefer the Giants now.

The Raiders have their die hard core group, but if I had to rank the East Bay's preferences right now:

Giants>A's>Warriors>Raiders
   33. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: February 19, 2013 at 09:58 AM (#4371728)
How do their tv ratings compare to the Seahawks? I'd be surprised if it's close.

Ratings and average attendance are horrible ways of measuring popularity though. They depend far too heavily on relative scarcity of the games. I mean, if we are going to play that game, baseball is going to come in dead last almost everywhere.
   34. Der-K thinks the Essex Green were a good band. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 10:18 AM (#4371736)
How much will being a Big Ten doormat help the program, Terp?
   35. will Posted: February 19, 2013 at 10:26 AM (#4371742)
"iirc, the phillies own the channel that broadcasts the bulk of their games, so unless i'm missing something, their revenue may very well be maxed out there."

No,the bulk of the Phillies games are on a Comcast-owned sports channel. Comcast does not own the Phillies(yet).
   36. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 10:46 AM (#4371751)
Probably safe to say that aside from a few cities - Los Angeles, Boston, New York,Toronto, St. Louis, maybe Cincinnati - football is going to be king.


Baltimore - crab cakes, Boston - chowdah, New York - bagels, Tampa Bay - the Early Bird special, Toronto - moose, Chicago - wind, Cleveland - regret, Detroit - bullets, Kansas City - barbecue, Minneapolis - lutefisk, Dallas - beef, Houston - more beef, Los Angeles - self-satisfaction, Oakland - can't afford food, Seattle - coffee, Atlanta - grits, Miami - mojitos, Philly - cheesesteak, Washington - pork, Cincinnati - chili, Milwaukee - cheese, Pittsburgh - steel, St. Louis - bad beer, Denver - weed, Phoenix - dust, San Diego - not a real place, San Francisco - Rice-a-Roni


San Diego - fish tacos

St. Louis - toasted ravioli

Chicago - deep dish pizza

Milwaukee - brats

Toronto - poutine? Or is that just a Montreal thing? Tim Horton's?

Pittsburgh - stuffed sandwiches

Cleveland - pierogies

Dallas - Tex-Mex?

San Francisco - Italian? Sushi?
   37. SoSH U at work Posted: February 19, 2013 at 10:49 AM (#4371754)
I think the most accurate way to put it would be that Chicago is a baseball town but its most popular team is the Bears because fan loyalty isn't split between two teams like it is with baseball.


That's my assessment, supported by the non-binding Moradini-Kittle-Ditka Test I conducted a few years back.

   38. Der-K thinks the Essex Green were a good band. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 10:54 AM (#4371759)
SF - mission burrito?
   39. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: February 19, 2013 at 10:56 AM (#4371762)
I lived in San Francisco in the mid-90's, and the 49ers were BY FAR the biggest franchise around. Similar to the Redskins in DC. So I find it fascinating that the Giants have surpassed them.
   40. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: February 19, 2013 at 10:59 AM (#4371765)
There's a lot of great food in San Francisco, but it's hard to identify a food that's strongly identified with the city. Maybe cioppino? Sourdough?
   41. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:06 AM (#4371768)
With a sustained run of success over the rest of the decade (and a World Series title or two), the Nationals could very well dent into the Redskins' dominance. The Skins largely copped top honors by default, having at least a 30-year plus edge in residency over the other teams (the Bullets/Wizards moved from Baltimore in 1973, the Capitals began play the following year; neither has been a dominant franchise save for the Bullets in the late '70s). You can make a good argument that the D.C. area has more interest in college basketball (Maryland men and women, Georgetown, George Mason and to a lesser extent George Washington and American) than in the NBA or NHL. College football interest should also increase in 2014, after Maryland leaves the putrid ACC for the more high-profile Big Ten.

The Redskins moved to DC in 1937, and from that day forward there hasn't been a single year that they haven't "owned" the city, even when they were the NFL's laughingstock in the 50's and again in the Snyder era. The Griffs/Shorts/Lerners never seriously challenged that supremacy until 2012, and even during the 70's when the Bullets were among the elite of the NBA, they only sold out their regular season games against the Knicks, Celtics and Lakers. Maryland basketball suffers from the same problem that any team other than the Redskins does: It's way too dependent on team success. For the Nats to make a breakthrough, it's going to take a long run of playoff appearances and at least one or two championships.

   42. Dag Nabbit is part of the zombie horde Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:08 AM (#4371770)
I think the most accurate way to put it would be that Chicago is a baseball town but its most popular team is the Bears because fan loyalty isn't split between two teams like it is with baseball.

Given the lack of fan support for the White Sox, I don't see this as that good an argument.
   43. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:09 AM (#4371772)
I lived in San Francisco in the mid-90's, and the 49ers were BY FAR the biggest franchise around. Similar to the Redskins in DC. So I find it fascinating that the Giants have surpassed them.

I can't see what's so surprising about a team with 5 recent Super Bowls dominating a city's attention, or what's unusual about that team being given a run for its money by a team that's won 2 World Series in 3 years, playing in a jewel of a ballpark. That sort of transition could happen just about anywhere.
   44. Random Transaction Generator Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:17 AM (#4371778)
Toronto - poutine? Or is that just a Montreal thing? Tim Horton's?


Poutine is Quebec-based.

For Toronto cuisine, it's REALLY hard to nail down as it's the most diverse city in the world, and with that comes an insane selection of food choices.
You could easily make a case for Chinese/Thai/(Other Asian), Italian or Greek (the Danforth area is a Mediterranean feast), West Indian (especially during Caribana).
But if you really had to pick one, I'd default to Tim Hortons coffee & donut/bagel.
   45. Bitter Mouse Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:21 AM (#4371783)
There's a lot of great food in San Francisco, but it's hard to identify a food that's strongly identified with the city. Maybe cioppino? Sourdough?


Very much Sourdough in my opinion. But yeah SF is my favorite city inthe world and the food is great.
   46. zonk Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:31 AM (#4371790)
I think the most accurate way to put it would be that Chicago is a baseball town but its most popular team is the Bears because fan loyalty isn't split between two teams like it is with baseball.

Given the lack of fan support for the White Sox, I don't see this as that good an argument.


I'd personally split the difference...

I would agree with Jim - Chicago is first and foremost a Bears town. No team gets as much and as deep city-wide attention as the Bears, and when/if the Bears are good - it tends to outshine everyone else.

Once upon the time - and frankly, on the way if not all the way back since Dollar Bill passed - the Hawks were somewhat immune to this... They had their loyal - and for hockey in the US, deep enough - niche and nothing disturbed that. I get the sense that over the last few seasons - the support has gotten wider, but I'm not so sure the depth is all the way back (probably getting there, though).

The Bulls are city's favorite bandwagon team; once Jordan left, the UC became pretty much a place for people to entertain clients during basketball season.

I think that if you were to strip out the 'scene' folks -- I would suspect that the Sox and Cubs really aren't all that far apart in terms of support (and I say this as a Cubs fan), it's just that virtually every 'casual' fan in the city tends to go north side. My bet would be that if you had some sort of litmus test -- let's say, name the everyday lineup, starting rotation, manager, and say -- top 3 prospects; the Cubs and Sox probably come out near even on the numbers. It's really more a matter of the fact that pink hatters, trixies, and frat boys head to wrigleyville almost exclusively (and I say that as a not-completely reformed frat boy).

It pains me, but I guess I'd say that Chicago is probably best described as a football town... not to the extent it overshadows baseball, but if you had to rank 'em - hard not to put the NFL at #1.

Oddly enough, despite tons of effort by Northwestern to make the Wildcats 'Chicago's B1G10 team'... despite the fact that Evanston is very easily accessible by CTA, despite playing games occasionally at Soldier Field and Wrigley (with a regular series supposedly to come), despite a relatively decent number (for its size - NU is only about 8k undergrad, with the Law and Med campuses in Chicago adding another k or so) of alums in the area, and despite having a pretty solid ~15 years now of fielding competitive -- or better -- teams, Wildcat football just hasn't caught fire. It's actually rather difficult to find a regular NU bar to watch fb and bb -- but you'd have no problem finding ND, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Michigan/MSU, IU, et al watering holes.
   47. Flynn Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:34 AM (#4371793)
The Niners have spent most of the past decade being terrible, bigoted and whining about public money for a stadium before decamping to Santa Clara. It's a Giants town now and will be for years to come.

As for food, the burrito, sourdough, cioppino, Joe's Special, crab Louie, crab in general, and the martini are pretty good food items that come from San Francisco. Better than many other cities!
   48. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:39 AM (#4371797)
Baltimore - crab cakes, Boston - chowdah, New York - bagels, Tampa Bay - the Early Bird special, Toronto - moose, Chicago - wind, Cleveland - regret, Detroit - bullets, Kansas City - barbecue, Minneapolis - lutefisk, Dallas - beef, Houston - more beef, Los Angeles - self-satisfaction, Oakland - can't afford food, Seattle - coffee, Atlanta - grits, Miami - mojitos, Philly - cheesesteak, Washington - pork, Cincinnati - chili, Milwaukee - cheese, Pittsburgh - steel, St. Louis - bad beer, Denver - weed, Phoenix - dust, San Diego - not a real place, San Francisco - Rice-a-Roni


This is such a bad list that it cannot be left uncommented on.


Baltimore - crab (not sure if crab cakes, since crab boils are just as, if not more, imitiably regional)
Boston - chowder is not a Boston-particular dish. If anything, more identified with Portsmouth. I'd say, however, that clams in general are very Boston. But not the chowder preparation.
New York - bagels are a fine choice; historically, oysters (believe it or not).
Tampa Bay - grouper sandwich
Toronto - [Dont know, have never been, but wouldn't be surprised if something from its immigrant communities]
Chicago - vienna beef; could be italian beef.
Cleveland - doesn't have a regional delicacy I'm aware of, but slavic cuisine in general.
Detroit - middle eastern food. Mmmmm, Shatila.
Kansas City - barbecue or steak
Minneapolis - personally the folks from there I know eat way more hotdish than lutefisk
Dallas - steak,
Houston - sort of lies at the intersection of many food traditions. Chili, mexican. I understand from my friend there's are surprisingly strong Cajun influence there now.
Los Angeles - fast food / burgers
Oakland - I think we can make an allowance for East Bay in general, right? In that case, locavorism
Seattle - coffee
Atlanta - I actually think of Atlanta more as the locus of chain dining than a focus on southern food. Though if anything, soul food.
Miami - latin food.
Philly - cheesesteak / or diner food
Washington - Another tough one, as it lies at the intersection of lots of regional cuisines but isn't really whole-hog part of any. Ethiopian food?
Cincinnati - chili or custard
Milwaukee - fish fry. Sausage.
Pittsburgh - polish food
St. Louis - toasted ravioli or the concrete/blizzard
Denver - too young to have a cuisine. if anything, big game?
Phoenix - border food / sonoran cuisine.
San Diego - fish tacos
San Francisco - bread (i'm partial to dungeness crab, but that's just me I think)
   49. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:44 AM (#4371798)
With a sustained run of success over the rest of the decade (and a World Series title or two), the Nationals could very well dent into the Redskins' dominance.


With a sustained run of success over the rest of the decade (and a World Series title or two), the Nationals any major league franchise excepting, probably, the Blue Jays could very well dent into the Redskins' the currently dominant franchise's dominance.
   50. SoSH U at work Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:50 AM (#4371800)
As an addendum to the previously mentioned M-K-D study, here's the most popular license plates for the five Chicagoland professional sports teams (in the order they became available). Anecdotally, the top team is not surprising, as I see far more Hawks plates than any of the others.

Blackhawks 7,266
Cubs 3,771
Bears 3,026
Bulls 1,083
Sox 1,862
   51. zonk Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:50 AM (#4371801)
Chicago - vienna beef; could be italian beef.


Concur... I'm always amazed at how difficult it is to get a really good italian beef outside of Chicago, considering it's not exactly a particularly difficult thing to get right. If Vienna also includes dogs - then absolutely concur. The toppings get the most press as being uniquely Chicago - but people overlook the importance of a good dog to start with (though admittedly, the evils of ketchup on a dog are a lot more fun to argue about).

Good deep dish/stuffed is a close second, but unlike a fine dipped beef -- I've been able to find acceptable quality of stuffed pizza outside of Chicago.

EDIT: I might also give a shout-out to being able to find a good polish sausage, but that's a bit tougher to plant a flag on without unraveling the wide variety of sausages and clearly defining the turf.... obviously, good brats are plentiful in Wisconsin, you can find a good Italian in plenty of places, and lots of smaller burgs do a pure polish sausage well. Still, I think Chicago ought to be at least in the discussion for jack-of-all trades "best sausage", with blue ribbons in at least a couple variants.
   52. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:50 AM (#4371802)
"Grits" is a good guess for Atlanta food, but the fact is Atlanta has fantastic food of every sort, because Atlanta is located in a central area to a region that produces fresh produce year round.
   53. The Fallen Reputation of Billy Jo Robidoux Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:51 AM (#4371804)
Keep in mind the Packers played some home games at County Stadium in Milwaukee until the mid-90s. For Milwaukee I'd say Packers > Brewers > Bucks > Admirals > Wave > whatever the arena football team is.
   54. TerpNats Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:52 AM (#4371806)
How much will being a Big Ten doormat help the program, Terp?
Maryland certainly won't be a regular Rose Bowl contender, but the Terps will become more competitive than people think. Edsall just came off with a surprisingly good recruiting class considering Maryland's recent struggles, and playing in the Big Ten rather than the ACC should boost the talent on hand in College Park. At the start, expect Maryland to be slightly better than Indiana, Purdue and Minnesota, then gradually rise in the Big Ten pantheon.

Oh, and for D.C. cuisine -- the half-smoke, of course, direct from Ben's Chili Bowl (U Street and Nationals Park).
   55. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:53 AM (#4371808)

Concur... I'm always amazed at how difficult it is to get a really good italian beef outside of Chicago, considering it's not exactly a particularly difficult thing to get right. If Vienna also includes dogs - then absolutely concur. The toppings get the most press as being uniquely Chicago - but people overlook the importance of a good dog to start with (though admittedly, the evils of ketchup on a dog are a lot more fun to argue about).

Good deep dish/stuffed is a close second, but unlike a fine dipped beef -- I've been able to find acceptable quality of stuffed pizza outside of Chicago.


Agreed on all counts. It is remarkable how hard it is to find italian beef outside Chicago. I never can understand why.

"Grits" is a good guess for Atlanta food, but the fact is Atlanta has fantastic food of every sort, because Atlanta is located in a central area to a region that produces fresh produce year round.


Yeesh . . . I've always found Atlanta food to be pretty gross, even compared to other southern cities (not a patch on Birmingham, for instance, despite being richer and larger)
   56. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:55 AM (#4371810)
Maryland certainly won't be a regular Rose Bowl contender, but the Terps will become more competitive than people think. Edsall just came off with a surprisingly good recruiting class considering Maryland's recent struggles, and playing in the Big Ten rather than the ACC should boost the talent on hand in College Park. At the start, expect Maryland to be slightly better than Indiana, Purdue and Minnesota, then gradually rise in the Big Ten pantheon.


I agree with this. Particularly once the program gets its finances together, I think there's no reason why Maryland shouldn't be a mid-tier B1G program; though if the realignment is (as they are hinting) geographical, Maryland will be stuck in a damn hard division.
   57. Greasy Neale Heaton (Dan Lee) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 11:57 AM (#4371814)
For Milwaukee I'd say Packers > Brewers > Bucks > Admirals > Wave > whatever the arena football team is.
Probably nonexistent.
   58. chris p Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:00 PM (#4371818)
Denver - too young to have a cuisine. if anything, big game?

beer? coors is in golden, the american craft beer thing practically started in boulder, and new belgium is in fort collins.
   59. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:01 PM (#4371820)
Concur... I'm always amazed at how difficult it is to get a really good italian beef outside of Chicago, considering it's not exactly a particularly difficult thing to get right. If Vienna also includes dogs - then absolutely concur. The toppings get the most press as being uniquely Chicago


agree with this. In Milwaukee it is easy to find, in Indy, it has proven elusive. I'm really surprised the Italian Beef hasn't fully taken hold the way a cheesesteak has coast to coast.

re: Milwaukee, definitely fish fries and frozen custard to go with Sausage.
   60. The Chronicles of Reddick Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:03 PM (#4371821)
Oakland - I think we can make an allowance for East Bay in general, right? In that case, locavorism


What is locavorism? Oakland would be Caspar's hot dogs.
   61. Eddo Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:03 PM (#4371822)
I think that if you were to strip out the 'scene' folks -- I would suspect that the Sox and Cubs really aren't all that far apart in terms of support (and I say this as a Cubs fan), it's just that virtually every 'casual' fan in the city tends to go north side. My bet would be that if you had some sort of litmus test -- let's say, name the everyday lineup, starting rotation, manager, and say -- top 3 prospects; the Cubs and Sox probably come out near even on the numbers. It's really more a matter of the fact that pink hatters, trixies, and frat boys head to wrigleyville almost exclusively (and I say that as a not-completely reformed frat boy).

I'll cosign this assessment. Zonk's pretty spot-on in every regard, actually.

As an addendum to the previously mentioned M-K-D study, here's the most popular license plates for the five Chicagoland professional sports teams (in the order they became available). Anecdotally, the top team is not surprising, as I see far more Hawks plates than any of the others.

Blackhawks 7,266
Cubs 3,771
Bears 3,026
Bulls 1,083
Sox 1,862

The Blackhawks' domination of licenses plates makes sense; generally, die hard Hawks fans are Die Hard Hawks Fans, with every other sport coming in a very distant second.

With the baseball/football split, you get a lot of people who grew up both a Bears fan and a Sox or Cubs fan, and don't really favor one sport's team over the other. I know that's how I am, and how very many of my friends are (on both sides of the Sox/Cubs aisle).
   62. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:04 PM (#4371825)
Yeesh . . . I've always found Atlanta food to be pretty gross, even compared to other southern cities (not a patch on Birmingham, for instance, despite being richer and larger)


Then you're doing it wrong. There are hundreds of great places to eat in Atlanta, at all price ranges.
   63. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:08 PM (#4371830)
At the start, expect Maryland to be slightly better than Indiana, Purdue and Minnesota, then gradually rise in the Big Ten pantheon.

Good luck with that, but those don't seem to be particularly realistic expectations. There's nothing the "B1G East" has to offer that the ACC didn't. (And a lot that it doesn't, most notably the basketball rivalries with Duke and Carolina.)

The B1G's foray into DC and New Jersey is a play on cable TV channel bundling (*), which is doomed to fail and end. It's the perfect example of buying at a top, so we have to hand it to Maryland and Rutgers for selling at a top.

(*) Which is to say, that when Maryland and Rutgers have to bring in people actually interested in them, as opposed to the millions of NY and DC homes who temporaily have to buy a bunch of other stuff to get the Big Ten Network, or who have to pay for the Big Ten Network even though they never watch it, the play will be exposed as the folly that it is.
   64. Tom Nawrocki Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:09 PM (#4371831)
Denver - too young to have a cuisine. if anything, big game?


Chipotle.
   65. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:11 PM (#4371833)
Then you're doing it wrong. There are hundreds of great places to eat in Atlanta, at all price ranges.


You need to get out more. I ####### love food, and I love eating, and I love eating everywhere. and Atlanta is definitely below average as American cities go in terms of food. Hell, its below average in its own state; I generally have much better food elsewhere in Georgia, as long as decor isn't your thing.
   66. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:11 PM (#4371834)
So much this. If the Lions were ever any good, they would own Detroit. Own it. (Imagine if the Lions had been as successful as the Red Wings the last two decades: perennial contender, numerous playoff wins, a Super Bowl title or three. Detroit sports radio would never talk about anybody else, ever.)

Thirded. Detroit would blow up if the Lions ever made a serious run. Go back and and rewatch the home playoff game against Dallas in 1991 -- Summerall and Madden regularly noted how loud it was in the Silverdome and there were times you can barely hear them over the din.
   67. zonk Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:14 PM (#4371837)
The B1G's foray into DC and New Jersey is a play on cable TV channel bundling, which is doomed to fail and end. It's the perfect example of buying at a top, so we have to hand it to Maryland and Rutgers for selling at a top.


Given how well Delaney and company handle network creation to start with and really exceeded anyone's expectations, I'm not betting against anything they do... Given the B1G's struggles on the gridiron, the fact that the conference is probably making bigger TV buck than much more successful (on the field) conferences has to mean something.

I'm not saying that bundling ISN'T doomed in the long-term, but I very much expect that the conference is well/better positioned to adjust and adapt as necessary... that's the beauty of essentially building it yourself as opposed to essentially sourcing it via contract. I know they switched a year or so back from a 51% conf majority share to FSN 51% majority (which I didn't like), but the conference still has, I think, a far greater control of its media distribution destiny than any other conference.
   68. Mike A Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:40 PM (#4371851)
Atlanta has a ton of great restaurants, same as pretty much any big city. It's not up to top-of-the-line San Fran, NYC, or Chicago standards, but it's in that mid-tier. I'm not sure there's a real 'cuisine' here, though. It's not really a Southern town, though there are a few decent Southern restaurants. There's a lot more great ethnic fare than one would expect. Also BBQ. Hmmm. Can we call 'The Varsity' a type of cuisine?

Atlanta is, as noted, a college football town first and foremost. It's 90% of what they talk about on sports radio. The Falcons have probably overtaken the Braves recently. The Braves have a pretty strong following, though the fanbase is more the Southeast than Atlanta proper (thanks to all the transplants). The Hawks haven't garnered much interest since they traded Dominique away. And hockey...well, there's a small but loyal fanbase and unfortunately the teams were never good enough to expand that fanbase.

So....College Football > NFL > MLB > NBA > NHL.
   69. Coot Veal and Cot Deal's cols=“100” rows=“20” Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:42 PM (#4371854)
Washington - Another tough one, as it lies at the intersection of lots of regional cuisines but isn't really whole-hog part of any. Ethiopian food?


Oh, and for D.C. cuisine -- the half-smoke, of course


and Ledo pizza... extra cheese and pepperoni.
   70. Tippecanoe Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:43 PM (#4371855)
Denver - too young to have a cuisine


I believe "prospectors" is the most well-known cuisine in the area.
   71. BrianBrianson Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:45 PM (#4371857)
As much as one might like to pretend that the signature cuisine item of Toronto is Dim Sum, or such, it's very clearly a maple dip and a double-double. No way around that truth.
   72. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: February 19, 2013 at 12:51 PM (#4371860)
With a sustained run of success over the rest of the decade (and a World Series title or two), the Nationals could very well dent into the Redskins' dominance.

With a sustained run of success over the rest of the decade (and a World Series title or two), the Nationals any major league franchise excepting, probably, the Blue Jays could very well dent into the Redskins' the currently dominant franchise's dominance.


I was only referring to Washington in my comment, but the generic point is also unarguable.
   73. Ryan Lind Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:05 PM (#4371869)
As much as one might like to pretend that the signature cuisine item of Toronto is Dim Sum, or such, it's very clearly a maple dip and a double-double. No way around that truth.


Except that is completely ridiculous because Tim Hortons is nothing close to unique to Toronto. They are ubiquitous all across the country. It would be like saying the signature cuisine of any particular yank city is a big Mac and large fries.

Maple dip and double double may well be the Canadian signature,but like in so many things, Toronto can #### right off in claiming it for itself.
   74. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:06 PM (#4371871)
I think the most accurate way to put it would be that Chicago is a baseball town but its most popular team is the Bears because fan loyalty isn't split between two teams like it is with baseball.

Given the lack of fan support for the White Sox, I don't see this as that good an argument.


Agreed. It's a great baseball town (and a great basketball town), but the Bears are so obviously and clearly #1 it's not even a question.

The Bulls are city's favorite bandwagon team; once Jordan left, the UC became pretty much a place for people to entertain clients during basketball season.

And yet, the Bulls still consistently led the NBA in attendance in the period post-MJ and pre-Rose. So while there's plenty of bandwagoning (and that happens for colleges when NU or NIU or UI are rarely successful at something), the Bulls are not as bandwagonny as you say here, IMO.
   75. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:07 PM (#4371872)

"Grits" is a good guess for Atlanta food, but the fact is Atlanta has fantastic food of every sort, because Atlanta is located in a central area to a region that produces fresh produce year round.


Well sure. NY isn't just all bagels either. Its what your city is "known for."

I once half-heartedly came up with a menu for a baseball-themed restaurant once with a sandwich representing each MLB team. I think it was something like:

Baltimore - Crabcake sandwich
Boston - Lobster roll
NY Yankees - Lox on bagel
Tampa Bay - Grouper sandwich
Toronto - ???

Chi. Sox - Italian Beef Sandwich
Cleveland - Polish boy
Detroit - Gyro
Kansas City - BBQ Brisket Sandwich
Minnesota - Fried Walleye sandwich

Anaheim - California avacado on croissant
Oakland - ???
Seattle - Smoked salmon sandwich
Texas - Steakburger

Atlanta - Fried chicken sandwich
Florida - Cuban sandwich
NY Mets - Pastrami on rye
Philadelphia - Philly cheesesteak
Washington - Pulled pork sandwich

Chicago Cubs - Chicago Dog
Cincinnati - Chili dog
Milwaukee - Bratwurst
Houston - ???
Pittsburgh - Stuffed panini
St. Louis - Chicken parm with toasted ravioli

Arizona - Tex-Mex club
Colorado - Denver omelette sandwich
LA Dodgers - Banh mi
San Diego - Fish taco sandwich?
San Francisco - Crab on sourdough
   76. Answer Guy Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:09 PM (#4371875)
We might see "Boston = baseball town" really put to the test now with the team about to go thru a rough patch with the city/metro area's other three Big Four franchises enjoying various levels of prosperity. Pretty much anyone can root for a consistent winner, and while any franchise needs fair weather fans (or else there's no incentive to win anything - see Maple Leafs, Toronto or Cubs, Chicago) it'll be interesting to see how it plays out.

The last stretch the Red Sox were mostly not in the running, the Bruins and Celtics were awful and the Patriots were wildly inconsistent.

Similarly, my theory remains that Boston isn't a particularly strong football market. At some point the Patriots will be bad again. Now fans will have the 2001-20xx stretch (3 SB wins, 5 wins, 7 AFC title games and counting..) to be nostalgic about, something that wasn't true during those years the franchise was thinking of leaving which might sustain them.

Hockey..well, after years of alienating fans, maybe the B's have turned it around. Jeremy Jacobs isn't particularly liked, but lots of folks in New England have hockey in the blood and that has to count for something.
   77. Shredder Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:13 PM (#4371877)
I'm always amazed at how difficult it is to get a really good italian beef outside of Chicago, considering it's not exactly a particularly difficult thing to get right.
I find this to be a weird quirk of a lot of regional dishes, especially given the ease of travel over the last 50 years. I had never even heard of Italian Beef until I moved to Champaign. I've still never seen Goetta anywhere, though I've heard of it. Poutine is starting to make its way south and west, though I still only really see it at foodie type places, and it doesn't appear to have originated as a real high end delicacy. You would think the appeal of fries, gravy, and cheese would be pretty universal. Same with marinated sliced beef and sausage made from various meats and oats. though I suppose there are versions of those things in many places (I just picked up some bangers and white pudding at an English shop this weekend, and I suppose white pudding is a cultural analog to Goetta).

In some places these differences make more sense. Fish tacos in San Diego. Green Chili in New Mexico/Colorado. Chowder in New England. But you would think beef and bread (or bread crumbs) would be pretty universal.
   78. SoSH U at work Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:18 PM (#4371881)
Agreed. It's a great baseball town (and a great basketball town), but the Bears are so obviously and clearly #1 it's not even a question.

The Bulls are city's favorite bandwagon team; once Jordan left, the UC became pretty much a place for people to entertain clients during basketball season.

And yet, the Bulls still consistently led the NBA in attendance in the period post-MJ and pre-Rose. So while there's plenty of bandwagoning (and that happens for colleges when NU or NIU or UI are rarely successful at something), the Bulls are not as bandwagonny as you say here, IMO.'


Now, my experience is far more Chicagoland than Chicago, but I'd say that the Bears are the only team that everyone pulls for, but the passion for the baseball teams is equal to or greater than the passion for the Bears.

And I rarely meet anyone who cares about the Bulls.

   79. BrianBrianson Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:18 PM (#4371883)
Maple dip and double double may well be the Canadian signature,but like in so many things, Toronto can #### right off in claiming it for itself.


The same complaint can be made about a lot of the suggestions. When assigning cuisines to a city in the context of MLB teams, that Port Hope has more Tim Hortonses per capita is neither here nor there, eh? Even if Montreal were still around, they'd be better represented by Poutine at the Peeler's or something like that, so it'd still stick.
   80. SandyRiver Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:23 PM (#4371886)
even during the 70's when the Bullets were among the elite of the NBA, they only sold out their regular season games against the Knicks, Celtics and Lakers

In the '60s they didn't even sell out to those teams. When I was at Hopkins, four of us walked in for a Bullets-Lakers playoff game and were able to buy tickets for contiguous seats. Not center court, to be sure, but about 15 rows off the hardwood, behind one of the baskets. (IIRC, Jerry West got his usaul 40, and Gus Johnson - Bullets' flashiest player - shot about 25% from the floor and clanged every one of his foul shots as the home team went down.) I think even the old AHL Clippers outdrew the Bullets in those days. However, the town belonged to Johnny U and company, even after Robby arrived and the Orioles became good.
   81. Ryan Lind Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:24 PM (#4371889)
I have never once imagined Tim Hortons being associated with Toronto. With Canada, yes. Poutine on the other hand is rather obviously associated with Quebec specifically and not Canada in general. Although not Montreal precisely either.

Although I can just as easily get it here in vancouver, of course.
   82. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:30 PM (#4371895)
I've still never seen Goetta anywhere, though I've heard of it. Poutine is starting to make its way south and west, though I still only really see it at foodie type places, and it doesn't appear to have originated as a real high end delicacy. You would think the appeal of fries, gravy, and cheese would be pretty universal. Same with marinated sliced beef and sausage made from various meats and oats. though I suppose there are versions of those things in many places (I just picked up some bangers and white pudding at an English shop this weekend, and I suppose white pudding is a cultural analog to Goetta).



Even more bizzarely, for some reason breakfast sausage is a particular hotbed of regional differences. You've got your goetta, scrapple, taylor ham, sausage gravy - all within, what, a 300 mile radius?
   83. Rennie's Tenet Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:37 PM (#4371899)
Pittsburgh - stuffed sandwiches


I hope Primanti's can franchise to the world, but no. The origins of Pittsburgh's food wheelhouse run from Germany and Italy east to Poland and Lebanon. There's also a neverending quest for a good fish sandwich.
   84. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:43 PM (#4371905)
Atlanta has a ton of great restaurants, same as pretty much any big city. It's not up to top-of-the-line San Fran, NYC, or Chicago standards, but it's in that mid-tier. I'm not sure there's a real 'cuisine' here, though. It's not really a Southern town, though there are a few decent Southern restaurants. There's a lot more great ethnic fare than one would expect. Also BBQ. Hmmm. Can we call 'The Varsity' a type of cuisine?


If I had to pick an "Atlanta" specific food, in line with Chicago dogs or NY pizza/bagels, I'd probably go with either a Varsity chili dog or, per RoyalsRetro @75, a Chic-Fil-A chicken sandwich. But to your point, which was my original point, anyone who visits Atlanta and complains about the food just isn't looking very hard. (My new favorite low- to mid-priced fare is Bone Lick BBQ's ribs. On the higher end, dinner at Miller Union in early summer, when the spring harvests are coming in from the surrounding area farms, is unreal. And Curly's Fried Chicken is the best fried chicken I've ever had, anywhere.

Atlanta is, as noted, a college football town first and foremost. It's 90% of what they talk about on sports radio. The Falcons have probably overtaken the Braves recently. The Braves have a pretty strong following, though the fanbase is more the Southeast than Atlanta proper (thanks to all the transplants). The Hawks haven't garnered much interest since they traded Dominique away. And hockey...well, there's a small but loyal fanbase and unfortunately the teams were never good enough to expand that fanbase.

So....College Football > NFL > MLB > NBA > NHL.


The only point I'd make here is that college football so vastly outstrips anything else that it needs to be sort of in a zone of it's own. College football, most universally SEC football, is to Atlanta as the Maple Leafs are to Toronto. Yes, other sports draw well enough (barring hockey, which can only ever generate about 8000 loyal fans - enough to warrant the minor league team in Gwinnett, but not enough to support an NHL franchise) if they're winning, but nothing gets close to football Saturdays.

The Braves do suffer, attendance wise, from the very dispersed fan base.
   85. phredbird Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:44 PM (#4371907)
wow, no love for new orleans food in this thread? per square mile, the city has better cuisine than anywhere in the country except for maybe nyc and san fran.

as for dominant franchises, i think with the death of jerry buss and the general cr@pitude and surliness of the current laker squad, the lakers and the dodgers are going in opposite directions. its up to the dodgers to start winning.
   86. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:44 PM (#4371909)
I have never once imagined Tim Hortons being associated with Toronto.


Toronto is the only place I've ever seen a Tim Horton's. Toronto is also the only place I've ever been in Canada.
   87. Ryan Lind Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:54 PM (#4371917)
That's my point. Toronto is in Canada, therefore pick a Canadian stereotype and apply it to Toronto. It is like saying Wendy's is associated with Atlanta.
   88. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:55 PM (#4371919)
That's my point. Toronto is in Canada, therefore pick a Canadian stereotype and apply it to Toronto. It is like saying Wendy's is associated with Atlanta.


Not exactly. Unlike Canadians, all Americans aren't the same.
   89. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 01:59 PM (#4371924)
So....College Football > NFL > MLB > NBA > NHL.


Final thoughts on Atlanta as a sports town:

College Football >>>>> NFL/MLB > NBA >>> NHL

I think an MLS team would have a better following, if they played in the Norcross/Chamblee northern surburbs, than hockey. The Falcons are currently ascendant as the favored professional sport, but if the Upton Gambit pays off and Matt Ryan gets injured or something, the Braves could retake that title easily. The Hawks have far too much work to do before they get back into the hunt.
   90. Shredder Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:02 PM (#4371926)
But to your point, which was my original point, anyone who visits Atlanta and complains about the food just isn't looking very hard. (My new favorite low- to mid-priced fare is Bone Lick BBQ's ribs. On the higher end, dinner at Miller Union in early summer, when the spring harvests are coming in from the surrounding area farms, is unreal. And Curly's Fried Chicken is the best fried chicken I've ever had, anywhere.
Having grown up in Southern California, I'm a big fan of quality Mexican food, which isn't easy to find in Chicago. But last time I was in Atlanta (probably four years ago or so) there were two really good Mexican restaurants: Taqueria Del Sol and La Neuvo Laredo. Highly recommend both.
wow, no love for new orleans food in this thread?
There's no MLB team in New Orleans.
   91. Papa Squid Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:04 PM (#4371927)
I have never once imagined Tim Hortons being associated with Toronto.


Well, he was a Leaf for 20 years before becoming a donut god. :)
   92. zonk Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:11 PM (#4371935)
wow, no love for new orleans food in this thread? per square mile, the city has better cuisine than anywhere in the country except for maybe nyc and san fran.


Well, no major league baseball team, so they got left out ;-)

But if we're just talking food, New Orleans is most definitely in my top 5 nationwide... I will say this - I've only ever really had the regional fare in NO, so I don't know to what extent you can find the variety of what you might find in NYC, DC, Chicago, etc - but I'm such a fan of cajun/creole cooking that it's absolutely among my favorites.

I'd still take Chicago after everyone but NYC (admittedly, that's probably also hometown bias and just knowing the places) -- but depending on what I'm in the mood for, I'd probably flip a coin between NO and SF at #3...
   93. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:12 PM (#4371936)
But last time I was in Atlanta (probably four years ago or so) there were two really good Mexican restaurants: Taqueria Del Sol and La Neuvo Laredo. Highly recommend both.


Next time you're in town, try Bone Garden. And though it's Korean tacos and not Mexican food per se, Hankook Tacqueria is fantastic.
   94. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:13 PM (#4371937)
There's no MLB team in New Orleans.


Right. This is why we're not talking about Memphis BBQ or Oklahoma City fried squirrel, or whatever the hell they eat in Oklahoma City.
   95. phredbird Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:22 PM (#4371941)
wow, no love for new orleans food in this thread?
There's no MLB team in New Orleans.


oops, i wasn't reading closely and thought it had become a general discussion ...
   96. zonk Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:23 PM (#4371942)
What is OKC cuisine?

I guess I'd assume something in the area of steaks -- but you can get a good steak virtually anywhere and that's especially true of any place in between, say, the appalachians and rockies. Even most smaller burgs in the plains/midwest can boast at least one outstanding steakhouse.
   97. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:35 PM (#4371949)
What is locavorism?


Eating food that is local (usually grown within 50 or 100 mile radius) and seasonal.
   98. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:36 PM (#4371951)
If I had to pick an "Atlanta" specific food, in line with Chicago dogs or NY pizza/bagels, I'd probably go with either a Varsity chili dog or, per RoyalsRetro @75, a Chic-Fil-A chicken sandwich. But to your point, which was my original point, anyone who visits Atlanta and complains about the food just isn't looking very hard. (My new favorite low- to mid-priced fare is Bone Lick BBQ's ribs. On the higher end, dinner at Miller Union in early summer, when the spring harvests are coming in from the surrounding area farms, is unreal. And Curly's Fried Chicken is the best fried chicken I've ever had, anywhere.


Agreed with regards to fried chicken being as good an Atlanta food as any.

But the rest of your posts just illustrates the weakness of Atlanta food. Chili dogs; sure, the Varsity is famous, but half a dozen mid-tier US cities think of chili dogs / coneys as their local speciality. Is there any special feature of the Varsity dog compared to, say, a Detroit coney? I don't think so, really, at least in any material way. Whereas the Chicago dog (or the Albany steamed dog, to pick another example) are really different than what's going on elsewhere. The barbecue in Atlanta is OK compared to the North, but inferior to pretty much everywhere else in Georgia - famously, the one thing you can't get in Atlanta is top 'cue. You get the same problem as Charlotte.

And as for the locavore/haute southern stuff like Miller Union, I'm sure its tasty, but its derivative of something that was going on everywhere else in the country (with respect to the locavorism) or Birmingham (with respect to the haute-southern, which was really started by guys like Frank Stitt 20-30 years ago, or even up by DC at the Inn at Little Washington). Other cities have delicious restaurants for foodies as well, but they also have food that is unique or fresh or just at all distinctive. Atlanta is just food, boring food, and there are more and less expensive versions and some talented chefs but ultimately blah.
   99. Mike Emeigh Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:47 PM (#4371957)
Pittsburgh is a football town. It was a football town in the 60s when the Pirates were (mostly) good and the Steelers (mostly) weren't, and once the Steelers became good they left the Pirates in the dust. One could make a good argument that the Penguins have moved ahead of the Pirates, too, although that's mostly star power and it will be interesting to see what happens if they don't remain good.

-- MWE
   100. Up2Drew Posted: February 19, 2013 at 02:53 PM (#4371960)
It's a great baseball town (and a great basketball town)


Respectfully disagree ... I think Chicago's a horrible basketball town, Bulls' attendance notwithstanding. Northwestern averages less than 6,000 per game in basketball, despite playing in the third largest market in the country and having top-flight Big Ten opponents come into Evanston all winter long. I regularly attend DePaul games and their posted attendance figures are an outright lie - they have crowds in the range of 1,500 most nights against Big East opponents.

Basketball and hockey fan bases are extremely regional in Chicago. I live in the Southwest Suburbs - a city unto itself, sort of - and it's all Bears/Blackhawks/White Sox. The Bulls might as well not even exist. People tend to be either Sox fans OR Cub fans, Bulls fans OR Hawk fans. The Bears benefit from the fact that the Cardinals moved to St. Louis back in 1960 and, for some reason (*cough* Halas *cough*), an AFL/AFC team never replaced them. Everybody follows the Bears.

Oh, and by the way, the food is great here. We're chubby for a reason.
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