Wylie Dufresne's cheap eating habits, and his fondness for Pret a Manger

I don’t recall ever seeing the balsamic chicken and avocado sandwich at Pret’s in London, where I have gotten sandwiches a few times…

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We were amused that most Pret’s in London invariably had an EAT’s a few metres hovering nearby. We originally surmised they were both under the same corporate umbrella.

Finally came to the conclusion EAT was riding on Pret’s demographic coatails, like Jamba Juice to Starbucks.

Julia Child praised McDonald’s fries more than once.

I was soooo happy when I found out Wylie Dufresne loved American cheese, because I always have too. I’m also a sucker for Popeye’s, it’s like the one fast food place I will go to.

I’m a big fan of Pret, too, especially in England… but the same damn sammich every. single. day?


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More about the memories it triggers less about the actual sandwich ?

Yes, but in those days they were still made with beef tallow and were excellent. I doubt she would have been as enthusiastic about them today.

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4 times a week? The same memory of him and his daughter sharing a sandwich?

Maybe. I’d grow tired of it even if I had shared that sandwich with George Clooney once '-D


Agreed – It was an heroic achievement to serve quintessential pommes frites on such a monumental scale daily, and at those prices. Elitism for everyone.

“The deli menu at the Gramercy Food Market, a 24-hour bodega at the corner of East 22nd Street and Second Avenue…”

I used to live in that building. The bodega was a Smiler’s at that time. And I also eat the same breakfast every day (but I make it myself).

I love articles like this! Many years ago when he had wd-50 a good friend worked in the kitchen and i would meet him and the kitchen crew (which included sam mason at the time) when they finished service- wylie and often his dad too (who would work front of the house) came along to whatever nearby dive bar. Friendly and very passionate guy.

Pret is everywhere in nyc now, close to my office too although i’m not a regular they do have a good selection of tasty sandwiches and such.
I also work in a creative industry and subscribe to the theory that some creatives need simplification and routine to focus their energy on other decisions

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It’s interesting that the “food-lovers” in the Kitchn article are all women, and they all eat a very minimal, low calorie lunch, but Willy’s routine breakfast and lunch are nice and hearty. He also seems to actually enjoy his food; the women in the Kitchn article, not so much.

Not the best example, there are more/other articles and studies and such about the phenomenon of creatives who need routine and predictability a number of fashion designers ( like narciso rodriguez, armani, and many you will never know the name of) actually have a kind of uniform they wear every day even though their profession is to create and design clothing- so kinda the same thing for Wylie where he has predictability and less decision making.
Not actually about what the meals are or the calories but the control of a variable to focus on what he needs to.
Just saying i get it and can understand why he would do this.

Oh, I get it. I can go days eating the same thing over and over again. One week I want nothing but tomatoes and arugala, then the next week nothing but soft-boiled eggs will do. And sometimes I buy a new dress or jeans or something and want to wear it everyday, which starts to look goofy on social media. :slightly_smiling_face:

I don’t think about it, though.

Finding good eats does take quite a bit of time.

That was my thought too.
I know many people who are passionate about what they create but the creation isn’t really apart of their day to day personal habits. The creative challenges are a thing seperate from personal wants.


Cf. Mies van der Rohe isn’t the only exponent of the Less is more creed, (and he wasn’t commenting about something to eat).

And again:

Chef Dufresne might be cut from the same cloth? Or as we’ve experienced, when there’s work to be done, get to work.


Aha! Yes!! The paradox of choice that’s what i had read/listened to and was trying to put my finger on…

In a different context, similar concern invoking what to eat: