In recent years, the commercial pizza game has seen a dramatic shift. Gone are the days when a gooey slice the size of your face will suffice. Pizza lovers have grown tired of the triangular-shaped grease stain left behind on a paper plate. Flour-dusted lips and oily fingers just don’t cut it anymore. Don’t get me wrong, there will always be an audience of cheese addicts to support establishments like Enzo’s and CollegeTown Pizza.
When Jin Kim and Jeesoo Lee opened Masita this past winter, they (like the rest of us) had no way of knowing what was right around the corner. The coronavirus hit restaurant owners incredibly hard, and many Ithaca businesses were forced to close their doors and regroup. Kim and Lee, having only been open for a month, were at a major disadvantage, as they lacked the dedicated fanbase of other established restaurants. Fortunately, Masita was not their first rodeo. Back in South Korea, the two women were longtime business partners and owned multiple successful restaurants together.
No matter how many history books are written about the year 2020, the cool kids 30 years from now will not understand why a middle-aged underwear man and a doofy Staten Island kid being bored at home was so intensely and painstakingly, hilarious. I hope they never do.
While it certainly isn’t a “cure” for quarantine, ACNH provides those fortunate enough to play it with much-needed respite from the turmoil in which we are currently embroiled; a blank canvas upon which anyone — young or old, experienced or new — can paint a stress free picture of life, however fleeting it may be.
My first Gimme Coffee experience was in November of my freshman year. A friend suggested we meet at Gates Hall to do work and get caffeinated, and I instantly became a fan. In fact, that friend and I proceeded to create “Gimme Coffee Fridays” for the rest of the year. We began to explore Gimme’s other cafes around Ithaca and appreciate the differing atmospheres of each and the consistently high-quality beverages. Gimme Coffee really cares about the quality of their coffee beans, the presentation of their drinks and the satisfaction of their customers.
When I first went to Rulloff’s, located on 411 College Ave back in February, I thought I would be saying goodbye to the bar and restaurant since its building is set for demolition at the beginning of this summer to make room for an apartment complex. Unfortunately, we would instead be saying goodbye to Rulloff’s, like many other restaurants, as a result of the current COVID-19 pandemic. Plastered on its doors now are signs that read, “Due to the coronavirus crisis Rulloff’s is closed until further notice.”
When I dined there, I asked if Rulloff’s would open another location, and the waitress told me they honestly don’t know. However, the answer being “yes” is less likely given the new and upsetting reality all restaurants now face. Whether it was trips to Insomnia Cookies to take a study break, post-prelim boba runs, Chatty Cathy dates with my roommate, frequent and spontaneous stress-prompting trips to Mango Mango or celebrations at Koko — Collegetown restaurants have always been there for me during my time at Cornell.