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Poke bowls at Manoa Poke Shop
Poke bowls at Manoa Poke Shop
Rachel Leah Blumenthal for Eater

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2017 in One Word: ‘Fast-Casual, Poke-Geddon, Overheated’

Local food writers sum up the restaurant world’s year in one word

As is Eater’s annual tradition, we’re closing out 2017 by surveying local food writers (including our own staff and contributors) on various restaurant-related topics, and we’re publishing their responses in these final days of the year. Readers, please feel free to chime in with your own thoughts in the comment section below.

Keep an eye on the Year in Eater archive page for other stories in this series.

Today’s next question: How would you sum up the 2017 restaurant world in one word? (See the 2016 responses here.)

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MC Slim JB, restaurant critic for The Improper Bostonian:

Overheated. There’s a lot of long-accumulating pressure on our scene right now: over-expansion, the resulting talent shortage in both front and back of house, national chains continuing to invade and thrive at the expense of far-better locally-owned indies, ongoing wage issues for workers, lingering public transportation problems that are especially hard on late-night employees, and a new focus on sexual harassment in a sector that is notoriously abusive, especially to female employees. I am bracing myself for a lot of these issues to finally boil over in 2018.”


Marc Hurwitz, founder of Boston's Hidden Restaurants and Boston Restaurant Talk, restaurant critic for Dig Boston, and more:

Bubble (and I think I say this every year).”


Jenna Pelletier, food editor of Boston Magazine:

Fast-casual.”


Jacqueline Cain, associate food editor of Boston Magazine:

Fast-casual.”


Catherine Smart, contributor to the Boston Globe and cast member of Milk Street TV:

Poke-geddon.”


Sam Hiersteiner, contributor to the Boston Globe and more:

“National: Roiled. Boston: Hardy.”


Dana Hatic, associate editor of Eater Boston:

Busy.”


Alex Wilking, contributor to Eater Boston:

Stuffed.”


Rachel Leah Blumenthal, editor of Eater Boston:

Seafood. From poke to sushi burritos to Vietnamese-Cajun seafood boils to frighteningly large lobster rolls, not to mention the always-popular dollar oyster deals around town, it was a fish-filled year.”


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