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The Cereal Bowl, Cleveland Park - Closed


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#1 cheezepowder

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 09:14 AM

Examiner article says, "At least one D.C. store (Rader would not reveal the exact location) will open by the end of this year, and the area is being targeted as a major focus area because of its walkable nature, Rader said."

A bowl of cereal is what I used to make when I wanted to do the most minimal amount of "cooking" at home so I don't see myself going out for one. But maybe it's more for the kid crowd (like gummy bears on cereal? yuck).

#2 mdt

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 09:29 AM

Examiner article says, "At least one D.C. store (Rader would not reveal the exact location) will open by the end of this year, and the area is being targeted as a major focus area because of its walkable nature, Rader said."

A bowl of cereal is what I used to make when I wanted to do the most minimal amount of "cooking" at home so I don't see myself going out for one. But maybe it's more for the kid crowd (like gummy bears on cereal? yuck).

This has got to be one of the most stupid-ass things that I have read lately.

#3 Waitman

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 11:32 AM

(Background music: "Nevermind")

Dude 1: Dude, got a match?

Dude 2: Yeah. Oh man, where did I put them? Better use the stove.

(From the kitchen)

Dude 1: Man, your pilot light must be out. Oh wait, I was turning the knob the wrong direction. (Beevis-like laugh) (pause) Shit, I caught my hair on fire.

Dude 2: Did you get it out, dude? That shit stinks.

Dude 1: Yeah. I'm OK. It's the hot new hairstyle, get it? (Beevis and Butthead-type laughter)

Dude 2: Hot new hairstyle. That's cool.

Dude 1: (walking back into the living room, rifling a ceral box) "Hey dude, you're out of Lucky Charms."

Dude 2: Oh man we're out of Lucky Charms? That sucks, man. Dude, you should see your hair.

Dude 1: I know, gimme your hat. There..(closes eyes in intense concentration) Wouldn't it be great if there was a place where you could, like, just buy whatever cereal you wanted and they'd, like, serve it in a bowl and shit, and you could get like, banana's and like 2 percent or 1% percent or, like, that shit your girfriend drinks?

Dude 2: Soy?

Dude 1: Yeah, soy. And it would be like a restaurant and all, so you wouldn't even have to like wash the bowls and stuff.

Dude: 2 You never wash the bowls, man.

Dude 1: Sometimes I do....Don't you like hate it when the Cheerios kind of glue themselves to the bowl and you can't get 'em off with your fingernail and then they like come off when you're trying to eat something else.

Dude 2: My girfriebnd freakin' hates that. She's always like naggin' me about the bowls. And like vegetables and shit.

Dude 1: See, so like if we had that cereal restaurant, she wouldn't be on your case.

Dude 2: Yeah, you're right. We should like do that.

Dude 1: Yeah. (pause) Do what?

Dude 2: Start the cereal restautant...got any matches?

Dude 1: Got any Pearl Jam?

"Don't go braggin' about how cool and clean your kitchen is. 'Caus if your kitchen's so cool and clean, ain't nothin' cookin'!"

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#4 brettashley01

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 12:12 PM

This has got to be one of the most stupid-ass things that I have read lately.

It may be stupid-ass but it's money-making. I am pretty sure the company started on/near a midwestern college campus, which is genius, because I really could have lived on cereal and coffee my freshman year. Sure would beat jumbo slice as a late-night snack, and there never are any good, quick breakfast and/snack options in college cafeterias besides the usual starbucks and candy.

ETA: Perhaps it wasn't the Cereal Bowl itself, but I clearly remember reading about this concept and its launch near a college campus. It seems this particular company was launched in Miami. I don't think they're one and the same (then again, I could be mistaken, or on an allergy medication induced acid trip).

#5 Heather

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 12:26 PM

It may be stupid-ass but it's money-making. I am pretty sure the company started on/near a midwestern college campus, which is genius, because I really could have lived on cereal and coffee my freshman year. Sure would beat jumbo slice as a late-night snack, and there never are any good, quick breakfast and/snack options in college cafeterias besides the usual starbucks and candy.

College was long ago and far away, but I dimly recall small refrigerators in dorms room, where it was possible to keep milk cold, and bowls nicked from the dining hall, and boxes of cereal stashed in closets. Are such thing no longer possible on today's college campuses? Or are the current batch of coeds so inept in the kitchen that even making cereal is beyond them?

#6 mdt

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 12:33 PM

It may be stupid-ass but it's money-making.

Possibly making money at one location does not mean that going nationwide is going to be profitable. That said, I am not surprised that they got funding for this venture.

$4 for a large bowl of cereal?! YHTBFKM.

#7 cheezepowder

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 12:41 PM

According to this article, it seems there are not one, but at least three cereal ventures out there:
Cereality http://www.cereality.../exp_stores.php from the addresses, the locations seem near colleges
Cereal Central, formerly Cerealicious but then got sued by Cereality according to the article http://www.cerealcentral.net/
Cereal Bowl http://www.thecerealbowl.com/

#8 brettashley01

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 01:50 PM

According to this article, it seems there are not one, but at least three cereal ventures out there:
Cereality http://www.cereality.../exp_stores.php from the addresses, the locations seem near colleges
Cereal Central, formerly Cerealicious but then got sued by Cereality according to the article http://www.cerealcentral.net/
Cereal Bowl http://www.thecerealbowl.com/

Yup, I was thinking of Cereality.
And, sure it's fine to keep small boxes of cereal, milk - but on an urban campus, with messy roomates and late night munchies, it's not practical to keep many varieties on hand, and encourages infestation.

#9 Spiral Stairs

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 02:23 PM

On the upside, there's a ready-made, media-friendly moniker for the first employee of one of these stores who goes on a killing spree.

The Cereal Killer
Lisa Simpson: What's inside of you?
Nelson Muntz: I dunno. Guts...Black stuff... And about fifty Slim Jims.

#10 Al Dente

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 02:28 PM

Coming soon to a neighborhood near you, Al Dente's House of Toast... ;)

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#11 Barbara

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 04:23 PM

The Cereal Killer

Diane Mott Davidson wrote "The Cereal Murders" in 1993. She writes a series of murder mysteries starring Goldie the Caterer. Some of us have too much time on our hands. ;)

#12 smokey

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 09:10 PM

Coming soon to a neighborhood near you, Al Dente's House of Toast... ;)

I'll serve my world famous boiled water right next door.

#13 ol_ironstomach

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Posted 29 June 2007 - 09:45 PM

I'll serve my world famous boiled water right next door.

I've been trying unsuccessfully to remember where I'd read an article a couple of years ago about the new blighttrend of restaurants that serve banal childhood comfort foods of the 1970s like cereals, Tang, Chef Boyardee canned goods, and so forth. Gaaah. Boiled water might not be that far behind!

Dave Hsu
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#14 Meaghan

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Posted 30 June 2007 - 08:40 AM

Boiled water might not be that far behind!

It's that damn tea. The Tea Bag Factory.

#15 mhberk

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Posted 02 July 2007 - 01:00 PM

I remember watching the thing about Cereality on Unwrapped on the Food Network and thinking to myself "why didn't I think of that!". If someone was explaining this concept to me or if I was reading an article about it, I would probably be thinking the same thing that others have posted in this thread. But this thing is an unbelievable money maker and HUGELY successful! The concept is genius, their margins are through the rough, and it's one of the those places that will stay busy at whatever campus they put one on.
(Sitting for lamb chops)

Lamb: Ple-e-e-se Li-i-i-sa I thought you lo-o-o-oved me, lo-o-o-oved me
Marge: Whats Wrong Lisa? Can't get enough lamb chops?
Lisa: I can't eat this, I can't eat a poor little lamb.
Homer: Lisa get a hold yourself!! That is lamb, not A lamb.

#16 cheezepowder

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 07:53 AM

So it turns out that the Cereal Bowl is coming to Cleveland Park. The WBJ article cites the Supercuts address, but the Cereal Bowl website lists the address where the Starbucks used to be.

#17 deangold

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 09:06 AM

The Starbucks space has the for lease sign taken down and the super cuts space still has its up as of yesterday.

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#18 Anna Phor

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 06:05 PM

Wow. Just wow. I looked at their "menu". I don't think you could make that shit up if you tried.

The neighborhood is crying out for a place to sit down & have a cup of coffee (Firehook is fine, in summer, but there's not enough indoor seating to make it a viable coffeehouse to sit with a friend for coffee for an hour or two), and we get this?

#19 DonRocks

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 09:29 PM

Wow. Just wow. I looked at their "menu". I don't think you could make that shit up if you tried.

That's only because you haven't done the following:

1) Go to their website
2) Click on "About Us"
3) Then click on "Experience"
4) Read the first sentence.

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#20 Adam23

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 10:15 AM

In my mind, Foggy Bottom seems like a way more appropriate location than Cleveland Park for this. I wish them luck.
But then again for basically $5 for a bowl of cereal, they don't need to sell much.

#21 DPop

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 01:45 PM

In my mind, Foggy Bottom seems like a way more appropriate location than Cleveland Park for this. I wish them luck.
But then again for basically $5 for a bowl of cereal, they don't need to sell much.

I know the guy who is opening this franchise and he tried desperately to get a space in both Foggy Bottom and Georgetown. They actually secured spaces both times, but due to the devilish commercial landlords and the price bidding wars they have between perspective tenants, they eventually lost out. After losing out and getting frustrated in both of those attempts, they settled on the Cleveland Park location, which was not ideal but had several advantages, including already been built out to support a restaurant facility (all other locations they'd looked at had not) and it was in a busier area in Cleveland Park, whereas everything they saw and could afford in AM and G'town was off the beaten path.

For obvious reasons I hope this place succeeds, but unfortunately I feel the same way about it that most of you in this thread do. I think in the right location (on or very near a college campus), in the right area (very little other good food options for breakfast), a place like this with margins as high as they are would do very well. I think, however, that moving into the Cleveland Park location was a desperation move after working on this for over 3 years and they are kind of settling and hoping that the parents in the area bring their kids in for Cinnamon Toast Crunch and Marshmallow bowls for $5. If not, I wouldn't assume that this would be a long term venture, and Cereal Bowl corporate would probably shut them down and focus their resources on opening up on another college campus.

#22 Pat

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Posted 07 December 2009 - 02:50 PM

I wonder how much individual stores can deviate from the concept. I noticed, for instance, that all of the hot cereals seemed to be oatmeal-based. What about Cream of Wheat? Grits? Other grains people eat hot for breakfast? The aging baby boomers are a good market for hot grains, but is oatmeal alone going to bring in enough people in the demographic that wants hot cereal?

Not being right on top of a college campus, they're going to have to pull in, say, both 30-something parents and their kids and maybe the grandparents. Most of the concoctions on their menu are way heavy on the sugary cereals, which is great for a late night study (or whatever :angry:) snack, but they may have trouble pulling in enough people in that neighborhood for Lucky Charms mixed with Cap'n Crunch and Cocoa Pebbles. If they can cover a wide range of healthy to sugary sweet to guilty pleasure childhood memory, they might be able to pull it off, even in that area.

#23 SeanMike

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Posted 08 December 2009 - 12:06 PM

1) Go to their website

That is the most annoying website I've been to in a long, long time.

http://www.scofflawsden.com/
The Scofflaw's Den, Cocktails and Cigars
It just keeps going, and going, and going...
 


#24 Anna Blume

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 12:48 PM

Not being right on top of a college campus, they're going to have to pull in, say, both 30-something parents and their kids and maybe the grandparents. Most of the concoctions on their menu are way heavy on the sugary cereals, which is great for a late night study (or whatever :angry:) snack, but they may have trouble pulling in enough people in that neighborhood for Lucky Charms mixed with Cap'n Crunch and Cocoa Pebbles.

I agree w everything Pat has to say, especially regarding the horror that menu would evoke for your average Cleveland Park-parent who presses down on the blue and yellow line to seal plain, low-sugar Cheerios in narrow plastic bags for snacks before heading down Porter Street with Max or Olivia in the stroller.

There are lots of apartment buildings along Connecticut Avenue stretching from Woodley Park to Tenleytown whose occupants range from college students to young professionals. While they prefer to get loud and rowdy with beer, pizza, burgers and booze, I could see how a sugar-high might appeal to those who wrinkle their noses at Sweetgreens. There is something about those bowls of cereal that reminds me of Cold Stone Creamery which has done well in the neighborhood.

As for oatmeal, Le Pain Q. also sells the stuff if not w glistening, canned pie filling straight out of the can. It's a tried-and-true menu item and no matter how much The Cereal Bowl calls itself and its founders creative, as earlier comments indicate, they offer few signs of originality.

I've always found distinctions between creativity and originality worth exploring...

#25 Adam23

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 02:46 PM

I agree w everything Pat has to say, especially regarding the horror that menu would evoke for your average Cleveland Park-parent who presses down on the blue and yellow line to seal plain, low-sugar Cheerios in narrow plastic bags for snacks before heading down Porter Street with Max or Olivia in the stroller.

I don't really think the sugary cereal aspect will keep the Cleveland Park parents out of this place. Cereal, regardless of sugar content, is a pretty low calorie food. 1 cup of Froot Loops with 1/2 cup of skim milk is a reasonable 160 calories, Lucky Charms is 150, Cinnamon Toast Crunch is 170 and Frosted Mini Wheats is 240 (higher calories being the result of higher complex carbohydrates and protein content NOT sugar). So assuming this place sells bowls that are three times the labeled serving size, we are still talking about 500 calories, which is reasonable. As for sugar, everything is relative. Your typical apple juice that CP parents love to feed their kids has twice the sugar per serving than Froot Loops and three times as much as Cinnamon Toast Crunch. It would appear that each of these bowls of cereal they are planning to sell probably has about the same number of calories and half the sugar as a tall Chai Tea Latte with Soy at Starbucks. This place may actually be a good option for the health conscious CP parents and I think they serve Kashi and granola and all that good stuff too.

#26 FunnyJohn

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 03:25 PM

I'm sorry, but I have to ask what I consider to be an obvious question -- how close to this place is the local medicinal marijuana dispensary?

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#27 Pat

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 06:40 PM

I don't really think the sugary cereal aspect will keep the Cleveland Park parents out of this place. Cereal, regardless of sugar content, is a pretty low calorie food. 1 cup of Froot Loops with 1/2 cup of skim milk is a reasonable 160 calories, Lucky Charms is 150, Cinnamon Toast Crunch is 170 and Frosted Mini Wheats is 240 (higher calories being the result of higher complex carbohydrates and protein content NOT sugar). So assuming this place sells bowls that are three times the labeled serving size, we are still talking about 500 calories, which is reasonable. As for sugar, everything is relative. Your typical apple juice that CP parents love to feed their kids has twice the sugar per serving than Froot Loops and three times as much as Cinnamon Toast Crunch. It would appear that each of these bowls of cereal they are planning to sell probably has about the same number of calories and half the sugar as a tall Chai Tea Latte with Soy at Starbucks. This place may actually be a good option for the health conscious CP parents and I think they serve Kashi and granola and all that good stuff too.

I think a lot of the objections may be due to refined sugars rather than to calories alone. Don't know what preservatives and additives are in Froot Loops, but those are some mighty interesting colors.

#28 hillvalley

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 08:25 PM

Wow, people. It's just cereal. Sometimes you need a bowl full of refined sugar with artificial color.

I think CP isn't as bad of a location as you might think. When the weather gets warmer I can see families taking walks to go get cereal as a snack after school (actually, I know one family who is excited to do this). Or if mom is sleeping late on Sunday, it's a great place for dad to take the kids to get them out of the house. If you've ever driven through CP during after school hours, there are always tweens milling around. I can see them hanging out there instead of the frozen yogurt place. And during those long waits for midnight showings of whatever is opening at the Uptown, a bowl of cereal could really hit the spot. Instead of being naysayers, how about trying to encourage a new, local business? Not everyone in CP can afford to eat at Palena or even Dino on a regular basis.
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#29 Heather

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 08:45 PM

I wonder how much individual stores can deviate from the concept. I noticed, for instance, that all of the hot cereals seemed to be oatmeal-based. What about Cream of Wheat? Grits? Other grains people eat hot for breakfast?

If they start serving Cream of Wheat I will be obligated to visit at least once. :angry:

(ETA: I swear I must be in the only parent in the US of A who doesn't give a rats you-know-what about my kids consuming refined sugar occasionally.)

#30 lizzie

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 11:09 PM

my kids (now 18 and 14) have always been able to pick any cereal (as long as it was on sale) but oddly enough gravitated toward Life, Rice Krispies and Crispix, while I have always loved Cocoa Krispies and Lucky Charms. No matter, I don't know that they and their friends would pay $6 or more for a bowl of cereal when they can get me to buy any number of boxes and they can make their own mixes at home. I see them finding their money better spent on frozen yogurt or ice cream mixes which we either do not have or do not have all the available flavor and topping options, at home. But, Rice to Riches in New York CIty seems to do ok selling only rice pudding, so I guess there is a potential audience for just about anything.

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#31 Arcturus

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 01:26 AM

This concept is everything that's wrong with American food culture. It's everything that many of us that cook for a living are trying to fix- that convenience, ease, and engineered mediocre palatability should be the cornerstones of a good meal. It makes me relentlessly, unmitigatingly, frothing-at-the-mouth angry. Food to me is about sharing the fruits of our labor and passion to the guests, not opening a dispenser and letting the masses graze.

Have we as a society reached the level of laziness that opening a box, pouring the contents into a bowl, and pouring a liquid over top is now too much work? We now have to leave the place where we would normally do that, and then spend the time and energy getting to another place to pay more for someone else to pour our cereal for us? That we, as a society, care so little about the process of creating and constructing good, decent food, that we're going off to pay far above market price for refined sugar, refined grains, and milk? Unfathomable.

The "food" being peddled at this joke of a foodservice establishment is the easiest food that there is to prepare, period. It's designed to be easy enough for Suzie homemaker, with her used-once saute pans, to prepare while holding a child in her arms. It doesn't matter to me if it's cereal with stuff in it, or mixed into ice cream, or with other cereal- it's ridiculous. Unless I'm facing certain death, I will never eat there.

-Adam Litchfield

 


#32 tampadcvisitor

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 02:07 AM

Equally disturbing is the recent trend (in this thread and Mad for Chicken for example) of people on Don Rockwell casting stones at businesses that are not even open, or ones that are, that they have not step foot in. As not only a longtime reader of this forum, and a frequent visitor to this website; but also to the DC area and the restaurants you have to offer it is unbecoming behavior. I've loved going to Palena, Dino, Cork, Gibson, Vidalia, PX, Eve, Majestic, Equinox, Art & Soul, Ray's Hell burger and many other places that I found on this board, and it would sadden me to not continue to visit this wonderful board. I was just asking about how far away Trummer's was for my next visit.

Even though I can easily make a pot of coffee at my own house (or use my Keurig), I also sometimes go to the independent coffee shop next door. Even though I have 3 pots of coffee at work, I sometimes stop at Starbucks next door to the office....and if I had kids and was in Cleveland Park, I am sure that they might want to go to The Cereal Bowl and have a good time making mixtures of cereal. It's not targeting highbrow, elitist foodies and it's also not the end of the world.

#33 Heather

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 06:05 AM

It's designed to be easy enough for Suzie homemaker, with her used-once saute pans, to prepare while holding a child in her arms.

Easy on the "Suzy Homemaker" BS there, Chef. I don't think she's their target market, anyway.

While I agree that the prices are ridiculous, the concept of this place fails to make me "frothing-at-the-mouth" angry. Is it any more or less clever than getting people to buy hamburgers that cost $10-15? It is designed to part wealthy, possibly stoned college kids from their cash. Good luck to them.

#34 KMango

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 07:27 AM

This concept is everything that's wrong with American food culture...

One word: diversity

Ok, more words...

A passionate perspective is one thing. Being so intolerant of other preferences that one becomes blindingly angry is another.

America, the grandest diversity experiment the world has ever seen.

There is plenty of room for The Cereal Bowl, and room for people who will never set foot there (like me).
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#35 Rovers2000

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 08:24 AM

Have we as a society reached the level of laziness that opening a box, pouring the contents into a bowl, and pouring a liquid over top is now too much work?

As a bit of a counter to this, are we as a society this uptight that something as simple as the opening of a small business causes us to be "frothing at the mouth angry"?

I can safely say that I can't think of a reason I would ever set foot in this establishment. But, as someone who believes in a capitalist society, I would never get riled up over an entreprenour taking a shot with a small business, whether I believe in the product or not. If this place succeeds, kudos to them for taking something that should clearly result in high margins and making it work.

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#36 Arcturus

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 09:43 AM

Let me be clear, I support the opening of small businesses (I work for one), and the opening of this one is no different. It's the concept that I see as indicative of a greater issue indicating the way food is viewed in America. I'm certainly not "intolerant of other preferences," nor do I have any sort of issue with home cooks (in fact I encourage people to do so and love it when I hear it), there's just something about the concept of going out to buy a bowl of cereal that resonates deeply with me. It strikes a nerve, if you will.

I almost feel as if eating actual food is becoming a lost art form- something to be sampled every so often in between visits to premade commercial troughs. I understand the convenience and price aspect, and how it appeals to the target demographic. However, the hamburger comparison is a bit skewed in my opinion- the labor and effort that goes into creating a very good hamburger and bun is far more than what will ever be opening a box of cereal. The cooks and chefs that work with and prepare food from scratch work immensely hard, long hours and put our bodies through hell to do so, so understandably we tend to take a great deal of pride in what we do.

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#37 Heather

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 09:54 AM

The cooks and chefs that work with and prepare food from scratch work immensely hard, long hours and put our bodies through hell to do so, so understandably we tend to take a great deal of pride in what we do.

I am well aware of that. But as a business venture, who is to say that the owners of the Cereal Bowl don't have as much invested in their business - in time, emotions, and money?

(And just as an aside, I have both worked full-time (in kitchens, even) and been a "Suzy Homemaker." Guess which gives me more time to shop and cook for my family?)

#38 Arcturus

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 10:42 AM

I am well aware of that. But as a business venture, who is to say that the owners of the Cereal Bowl don't have as much invested in their business - in time, emotions, and money?

(And just as an aside, I have both worked full-time (in kitchens, even) and been a "Suzy Homemaker." Guess which gives me more time to shop and cook for my family?)

I'm certainly not trying to take anything away from the human aspect of the business- like I said, I'm all for small businesses opening. It's the concept that irks me.

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#39 laniloa

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 05:55 PM

I never had sugared cereals growing up so think of them as a treat. Every now and then I'll have some as a snack. I can't see paying these prices for that opportunity though. If I felt the urge to mix types, I can pick up one of those 8-packs of different flavors for half the price of one of these bowls. Maybe if I'm out and about and wanted a little something sweet I could see checking it out. Given the restrictions on restaurants in the Cleveland Park overlay, I would have preferred to see something I would frequent rather then something I might check out once out of curiosity. Who knows, maybe I'll set one foot in the door and fall in love with the place.

#40 Anna Phor

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 07:40 PM

As a bona fide Cleveland Park parent, it's not so much eating refined sugar and food color number 5 that I object to*, but I wouldn't take my kid there because there isn't anything that *I* would eat.

And yes, it's nice that there's a new business opening, but I really don't think this is sustainable. I don't think it will last more than a year (by the by, Cold Stone Creamery has been closed now for more than a year I think--I wasn't particularly fond of them, either). I think a neighborhood coffee shop would make more money and be a better long-term tenant for the space. But nonetheless, I wish the owners the best, and a little dramatic high dudgeon shouldn't dissuade them.

*okay, well I do object to my son eating this, but he's only 5 weeks old. I was quite proud of the fact that I made cereal myself this morning, with the child in arms. (Couldn't get the plastic sleeve back in the box, though.)

#41 leleboo

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 07:49 PM

but he's only 5 weeks old. I was quite proud of the fact that I made cereal myself this morning, with the child in arms. (Couldn't get the plastic sleeve back in the box, though.)

Congratulations! Yeah, I think this morning was an epic win for you. :angry:

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#42 washingtony

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 11:39 PM

I think a neighborhood coffee shop would make more money and be a better long-term tenant for the space.

Not that I wouldn't love a coffee shop in the neighborhood, but the fact that two coffee shops have closed in the last three years in just that one block has to mean something about the viability of the business there.

I really don't understand the neighborhood. It's seems like a tough place for businesses, in part perhaps because of the NIMBYism entrenched in a lot of the locals. (See, e.g., the Giant on Wisconsin; see also, the Argentinian restaurant that was looking at the old McDonalds space about two years ago). Coffee shops don't last, big chains like Starbucks, Coldstone and 7-11 move out, historic buildings are demolished to make way for a drug store two blocks from another drug store, but somehow mediocre restaurants last.

Of course there are a lot of great things in the neighborhood, from the Upton to Vace to a lot of great upscale restaurants. But a coffee shop just doesn't seem in the cards.

#43 bookluvingbabe

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Posted 11 December 2009 - 11:39 AM

As a bona fide Cleveland Park parent, it's not so much eating refined sugar and food color number 5 that I object to*, but I wouldn't take my kid there because there isn't anything that *I* would eat.

And yes, it's nice that there's a new business opening, but I really don't think this is sustainable. I don't think it will last more than a year (by the by, Cold Stone Creamery has been closed now for more than a year I think--I wasn't particularly fond of them, either). I think a neighborhood coffee shop would make more money and be a better long-term tenant for the space. But nonetheless, I wish the owners the best, and a little dramatic high dudgeon shouldn't dissuade them.

*okay, well I do object to my son eating this, but he's only 5 weeks old. I was quite proud of the fact that I made cereal myself this morning, with the child in arms. (Couldn't get the plastic sleeve back in the box, though.)

Congrats! (I did much better with eating breakfast when I started babywearing.)

Nothing to add about the Cereal Bowl other than I can't imagine going as a parent. I wouldn't have gone as a college student. $5 for a crappy bowl of cereal that I wouldn't eat for free in the dining hall versus $5 for a steak and cheese sub from Armands? Or pooling our money and getting greasy delivery from Blue Diamond? I just don't get it. And that's okay. There are lots of places that thrive in spite of my not getting them.

#44 Pat

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Posted 11 December 2009 - 03:01 PM

NY Times article on cereal marketing, which touches on reasons that cold cereal does not appear on restaurant menus. This is not the most fascinating article ever but, in light of this discussion, it caught my attention.

#45 trufflesniffer

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Posted 11 December 2009 - 04:54 PM

I'm sorry, but I have to ask what I consider to be an obvious question -- how close to this place is the local medicinal marijuana dispensary?

That's f...ing funny!! As for the earlier post about how well Cold Stone Creamery is doing in Cleveland Park...it's been closed for months.!

#46 mbucher

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Posted 11 December 2009 - 06:38 PM

Congrats! (I did much better with eating breakfast when I started babywearing.)

Nothing to add about the Cereal Bowl other than I can't imagine going as a parent. I wouldn't have gone as a college student. $5 for a crappy bowl of cereal that I wouldn't eat for free in the dining hall versus $5 for a steak and cheese sub from Armands? Or pooling our money and getting greasy delivery from Blue Diamond? I just don't get it. And that's okay. There are lots of places that thrive in spite of my not getting them.

Thanks for the greqat memory. I totally wiped Blue Diamond off my memory from days at AU, also Campus Delivery and the Right Wing.......

#47 Michael Landrum

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Posted 11 December 2009 - 08:38 PM

I can think of any number of fine-dining trends and practices that are equally, if not more, infantile at heart and in nature but that suffer from the additional sins of being self-delusional and self-glorifying, masturbatory, disdainfully irrelevant, and with even more of a rip-off mark-up than the innocent if not entirely innocuous cereal. The other main difference being that cereal is something that people actually enjoy and don't just pretend to.

Two simple things to remember which are often overlooked in the hospitality business, regardless of price or quality: 1) A restaurant, despite what the chef or owner wants it to be, is first and foremost a public, social, identity-driven gathering space; and 2) Exclusive by definition excludes and is therefore necessarily exclusionary.

More and more I am finding this to be the DC theme song, so...Get out your golden calculators and lean a little bit closer...

#48 Arcturus

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 12:23 AM

I can think of any number of fine-dining trends and practices that are equally, if not more, infantile at heart and in nature but that suffer from the additional sins of being self-delusional and self-glorifying, masturbatory, disdainfully irrelevant, and with even more of a rip-off mark-up than the innocent if not entirely innocuous cereal. The other main difference being that cereal is something that people actually enjoy and don't just pretend to.

Two simple things to remember which are often overlooked in the hospitality business, regardless of price or quality: 1) A restaurant, despite what the chef or owner wants it to be, is first and foremost a public, social, identity-driven gathering space; and 2) Exclusive by definition excludes and is therefore necessarily exclusionary.

More and more I am finding this to be the DC theme song, so...Get out your golden calculators and lean a little bit closer...

I'll bite. :-)

Elaborate?

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#49 Michael Landrum

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 01:53 AM

I'll bite. :-)

Elaborate?

Hmmm...an asparagus spear in a test tube; truffled pop corn,; foie gras ice cream,; cotton candy (or other carnival-based food) anything; "watch me eat a worm" organ dishes; unsafe, amateur, Brady Bunch-style "Hey, let's make some charcuterie and we can save the prom!" playing with sausages in the basement; all that erector set and surgical tweezer plating with micro this and mini that; a mushroom gelee shaped in a mushroom-shaped mold so it will look like a "mushroom" on the plate (kinda like Beavis and Butthead's butt-shaped tatoo of a tatooed butt that they wanted to get tatooed on their butts; Mr. Wizard Junior Chemistry Set (not recommended for children under 11) powders and foams; "adult" grilled cheese sandwich apps for $12.95...

Do I really need to go on? There's still dessert lists to go into.

Compared to all this, a restaurant serving cereal certainly comes off as more honest, less precious and maybe even a bit more adult.

Of course, one should always keep in mind what Steve Martin went through to get a reservation at the hottest restaurant in town in LA Story. The restaurant? Pronounced "Lideo." Spelled "L'Idiot."

#50 Arcturus

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Posted 12 December 2009 - 09:17 AM

Hmmm...an asparagus spear in a test tube; truffled pop corn,; foie gras ice cream,; cotton candy (or other carnival-based food) anything; "watch me eat a worm" organ dishes; unsafe, amateur, Brady Bunch-style "Hey, let's make some charcuterie and we can save the prom!" playing with sausages in the basement; all that erector set and surgical tweezer plating with micro this and mini that; a mushroom gelee shaped in a mushroom-shaped mold so it will look like a "mushroom" on the plate (kinda like Beavis and Butthead's butt-shaped tatoo of a tatooed butt that they wanted to get tatooed on their butts; Mr. Wizard Junior Chemistry Set (not recommended for children under 11) powders and foams; "adult" grilled cheese sandwich apps for $12.95...

Do I really need to go on? There's still dessert lists to go into.

Well, I get the idea, but the case for any of that being infantile is subjective, I'd think. What about any of that makes it infantile in your point of view?

-Adam Litchfield

 





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