Wisdom Teeth Rambles: Six Fast Casual Joints I Need Now

DISCLAIMER: I did two things right after my wisdom teeth removal. 1) Write this blog. 2) Shoot this Oscar-winning film:

DOUBLE DISCLAIMER: If you’re not having fun by the second concept, it really doesn’t get any better. Just click a banner ad and hope it makes you download Flash Player.

*Clears Throat*


You know what’s broken and will NEVER be fixed? Applebee’s. Fast-casual dining. If these joints spent half as much time launching fresh concepts as they did stapling surf boards and jerseys to walls, Millennials might actually show up. So, instead of just complaining about it, I’m providing solutions—six of ’em! Passive-aggressors, take note! Here. Take ’em. Call me when they’re done. Let’s get started.


Magma: “Just cork it!”

Magma is a volcano-themed fondue restaurant with a charitable edge. Which are sooOoo hot right now! And no, this isn’t your average 501(c)(3); Magma’s number one cause is corking Mt. Saint Helens—for good. And unlike the Melting Pot—where you spend half the time wondering why you’re paying to cook your own food for 3 hours—Magma trades payment for Parish. That means a collection basket is passed around the restaurant the whole night until you feel awkward enough to throw in a few singles. It’s for Washington…state. Just do it.

Gordan Ramsey calls it, “A hot concept, KABOOM!” *****


Someone has the right idea.

This sleepy spot in the heart of OTR hands you an Ambien Extra Strength with your menu. If you make it through your appetizer, the rest of your meal is free. Everyone loves a challenge. And, If you don’t make it to the after-dinner mint, someone named the “Sandman” crawls out of the freezer and calls all of your ex’s.

That girl you kissed under the bleachers is 9th grade call it, “Legitimately terrifying!” *****


Today’s study is tomorrows stew, Jane! I’m getting arrested.

This Sub-Saharan joint pulls the rug from under Jane Goodall by serving all sorts of gorilla dishes that are actually just pork. People want what they can’t have—and all that Harambe coverage gave me a few ideas. Things move quickly at AFRIKA thanks to a sandstorm that rolls through every 20 minutes. Better get in, get your ‘rilla, and get out because—take it from me—the last thing you want when you’re on a date is sand in every hole of your body.

The Cincinnati Zoo calls it, “Wish we thought of that!!” *****


No soul. No freedom.

This hometown favorite is a  real throwback. Upon entering, your party is screamed at by four possibles “moms”: The Pushover, the Bestie, the Dance Mom, or the Casey Anthony. Moms are randomly selected, no refunds. After a scripted argument, you get SENT TO YOUR ROOM. After you think about what you’ve done, a hot meal is slid under your door in about 30 minutes or NEVER. Casey’s kinda savage. Also, there’s no dessert until after you apologize—or sneak out of your window and into your boyfriend’s car. We’re all about realism. Also, the bill comes out of your allowance.

Your real parents call it, “See ya at Christmas!” *****

The Nursery

Separation is natural, Cali.

This culinary twist on your childhood nightmare splits up your party with a simple coin-flip. Heads: Enjoy your meal! Tails: You’re forced to hang out in the basement with the nuns until someone who flipped heads picks you out of an oversized crib and invites you to eat with them. Watch out, many circles frequent the Nursery as an excuse to ditch their ‘dud friends.’ Sounds kinda nice.

Your friends say, “We adopted someone hotter!” *****

Hatch it!

World’s largest egg, or pointing to it? Please respond.

Maybe this concept is egg-actly what you’re looking for. *BARF.* Your experience begins when you—and party of 20 strangers who also bought a Groupon—pay an $800 cover fee no sperate checks, please to hatch your very own mystery meal. Once you empty your pockets, you’re greeted by an ominous, 30-foot black egg and sitting under a dim lightbulb. Things get real serious when a woman—who’s blowing into a recorder she borrowed from your fifth grade music teacher—hands you a warm washcloth and commands you to, “Scrub. For. SUPPER.” After about 2 hours of complete hell incubuation—and just when the wait staff thinks like you’re about to DIE—they press a secret button they could have pressed 90 minutes ago. And BOOM. The egg hatches, and what is it? You’re SO hungry. EVERYONE MOVE.


It’s a trough of mayonnaise and 19 straws. One person’s going to have to use their HANDS.

Stacy from Home Depot says, “I was in-and-out faster than the Melting Pot!” *****


*Wipes drool*

Soooo uhhhh….

This blog is lovingly dedicated to Grant Rost <<< That guy who took EXCELLENT care of me while I was high as a kite—including letting me throw up in his laundry basket. And making me go golfing with him. And answering all my dumb questions during Dunkirk.

Don’t Forget Your VIDEO OF THE YEAR Jaekle Jam:



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