What Makes the Perfect Stoner Restaurant?

What Makes the Perfect Stoner Restaurant?

It is an age-old problem we have all faced: the clock has rolled over to 2:30 a.m., you and your buddies are high as shit, and the appetite begins to creep in. It is the unmistakable temptation of this flower. Slow in the beginning, it’s not long until the hunger consumes you and you see that you would kill to get a milkshake, a fist full of mozzarella sticks, such as three tacos, and a piece of Hawaiian pizza. But where does one go to meet this desire? How could you possibly address this range of desire?

Believe it or not, there was a short time in Berkeley, California where a restaurant existed to serve this exact purpose. It was a late night (open 6:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m.) restaurant that served, as the name implies, food specifically designed to feed the cannabis cravings of old hippie burnouts and red-eyed school students alike. The menu ranged from mashed potato taquitos to deep-fried strawberry cheesecake bites, to brisket-covered french fries, to assorted candy, and much more. They had a section specifically for budget dining called the “I’m Broke” menu where you could purchase one Otter Pop or a scoop of buttered corn. Munchy Munchy Hippos was a stoner oasis, but it was a star that burned too bright. It has since closed down, leaving a chili-cheeseburger-sized hole in all of our hearts.

But, Munchy didn’t die in vain. It has provided a blueprint for what makes an superb stoner restaurant. For each of the four categories below, an eatery will be awarded points based on how well it meets qualifications. The points are then added up, with the greatest possible score awarded being 50.

Menu – 20 Points

Yes, large pieces are great, and of course, greasy food reigns supreme, but consider the value of customization. The more you are able to Frankenstein your meal, the better. The joy of adding eggs and bacon into a cheeseburger, or blending a slice of pie directly into a milkshake, cannot be overstated. Furthermore, while not a requirement, a value menu is a nice bonus; cheap eats are appreciated by everyone.

Convenience – 15 Points

Straightforward, but so crucial. Walking distance is great, but easy access by public transportation is nice also. Delivery can be clutch, but a very long wait period is a slow kiss of death, and a sneaky fee or delivery minimum popping up at checkout after poring over a menu on Grubhub for 25 minutes is the single most frustrating experience in all of human existence.

Environment – 10 Points

All of the things you would ordinarily expect to make up a good environment at any restaurant (clean, friendly support, etc.) apply here, with two crucial additions. First is the “chill” variable. Even if you aren’t somebody who suffers from the occasional paranoia or anxiety when stoned, it’s important that people there (both employees and customers) aren’t prone to turning a judgemental eye towards you and your friends when you start laughing hysterically, or when you come in smelling a little… herbal. Second, the staff has to be tolerant of long or possibly confusing orders. It’s surprisingly disheartening when your petition to substitute the roast beef in your French Dip with a piece of fried chicken is met with a sigh or an eye roll.

Food Quality – 5 Points

Last, and definitely least, is the actual food quality. We’d all like to pretend that our criteria when stoned aren’t as low as they are, but there is a reason no one eats Jack in the Box tacos sober. Of course the better the food is, the better the experience, but at a certain point, so long as it isn’t going to make you sick, the quality matters a great deal less than it probably should.

Now that we have a proper scoring manual, let’s hold it up to some old standbys and see how they fare.

Menu: Some variety, but it’s basically the exact same 8 ingredients re-packaged 100 times unless you are at a “Cantina” which adds weird booze choices. Decent value throughout the board. (13/20)

Convenience: Almost all fast food has the benefit of many places and quick service with the caveat that delivery is rarely an option without the pricey aid of delivery services such as Postmates. The Bell fits that mould. (13/15)

Environment: Taco Bell rarely has as much seating as, say, a Wendy’s, but it’s often nicer than an average fast food restaurant. (9/10)

Food Quality: What is the competition here? Chipotle? Del Taco? T-Bell is first in its class by a mile.

Total: (40/50)

Denny’s

Menu: That is where Denny’s shines. They also have very affordable rates for all the food you’re getting. (19/20)

Convenience: Denny’s are rarely accessible by anything other than car, so unless you’ve got a designated driver or wish to throw down for a Lyft, you’re out of luck. Only points earned here come from being open 24 hours, 7 days a week. (5/15)

Environment: Standard diner, which is a solid vibe. Only issue here would be gruff, irritated truckers casting a critical gaze your way, or a family traveling through the night with kids that give you looks that make you feel guilty for being so high in public.   (7/10)

Food Quality: “Food” in appearance and name only. If you don’t know what to order (or what to keep away from) you could ruin a good night. (1/5)

Total: (32/50)

Menu: Nothing special in terms of selection or customization, but a well-rounded lineup of pizza, wings, and assorted bread treats nonetheless. The cornerstone of the operation, the Hot-N-Ready, is lowkey among the best value items in the fast food game. (14/20)

Convenience: Pizza spots are always likely to get a boost here because of embedded delivery, and the Hot-N-Ready earns them big points for eliminating all possible wait time for pickup orders. Points deducted for much fewer places than the competition (14/15)

Environment: Rarely a dine-in option, which may actually be a blessing. (3/10)

Food Quality: Sneaky good because of their garlic-powder-drenched crust. (4/5)

Total: (35/50)

Keep this evaluations tool in your back pocket. Next time you find yourself with a late-night itch, use our useful manual as your munchy compass. You won’t regret it.

Released at Sat, 30 Jun 2018 00:00:20 +0000

Posted in: News

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