This is one of the many excellent passages in Tyler Cowen’s book “An Economist Gets Lunch“:

Chinese food in America is not as good as in Sichuan province, but Sichuan province does not offer comparably diverse food options across the board. American food, and much of the trade-oriented, market-oriented Anglo world, is moving toward this “next best” status for many ethnic cuisines. No one of these cuisines is American food, but there is something strongly American about the combination of all those food choices in one locale. In many areas of life, America has been about perfecting diversity and choice, rather than about perfecting any single style. So if immigration restrictions limit the number of food choices, they are striking at the greatest qualities of American food.


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