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FOREWORD: Editor’s Letter on the Culinary Scene

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You could say it’s a testament to our rugged culinary individuality that in this franchised fast-food nation of ours, the little guys still command the most respect on the Main Line. Or maybe it’s just the fact that we’ve been so spoiled by homegrown pizza, steak and hoagie joints for so long that we’ve got zero tolerance for spongy crust, sickly sweet tomato sauce and pressed lunch meat trucked in from someplace that wouldn’t know a good slice of cappicola if you dropped 15 tons of it on the local strip mall.

Sorry, Jared. Mom and pop are more than all right around here. In fact, they’ve got your tasteless six-inch Subway Club right here.

And as the local Italian contingent continues to thrive, menus for many other types of restaurants are finding their way into our kitchen drawers as well. (Remember when anything Asian was exotic, and edible Mexican food could only be had out of a box? I do.)

What better time to celebrate the Main Line’s ever-expanding moveable feast than in February? Synonymous with the winter doldrums, it’s traditionally the month we give ourselves a break—laying low, snuggling up on the sofa and satisfying our cravings for pizza, cheese steaks and hoagies, lasagna, hot and sour soup, nachos, and other such portable comfort food. “But naturally, we don’t want to have to work too hard to get it,” says MLT associate editor Dawn Warden, brutally honest as always.

To make our lives easier, Warden has compiled a bounty of worthy takeout and delivery options for this month’s “Great Food to Go” cover story. From Thai to Tuscan, gut-busting to heart-healthy, Warden hit the road—and the phone—to track down an impressive array of choices.

Now go ahead and dial. You can always cook tomorrow night.

ALSO IN THIS ISSUE: “It was a challenge, to say the least,” says J.F. Pirro, a frequent Main Line Today contributor. Pirro is referring to the months-long process of researching and writing “In Memory of a Murder,” in which he returns to the scene of John du Pont’s well-publicized demise and tries to make heads or tails of the eccentric millionaire’s tarnished legacy. Pirro’s challenge? “I had to find what was new and tie it back to the Main Line, which has desperately tried to forget ‘it’ happened here. In my career, I’ve never exhausted as many sources on a single story, and the one lasting impression I have is just how harrowing, haunting and forever fresh the murder remains. In some cases, I had to step lightly. The Du Pont family name carries a lot of weight, and always will—especially in these parts.”

Pirro’s story is a powerful marriage of dogged, detailed reportage and succinct storytelling—the sort of substantial, entertaining read we strive to offer every month.

Enjoy.