LSU quarterback Joe Burrow is still basking in the glow of leading the Tigers to the 2020 national championship, but his future is growing closer by the day. The NFL draft is in late April, and with the QB-needy Cincinnati Bengals picking first, we have a good idea of where Burrow might end up.
Burrow went to high school in Athens, Ohio, and spent part of his college career at Ohio State, so we know he’s got love for the Buckeye State. But a tweet from 2018 reveals that he may not enjoy Cincinnati’s signature dish, Skyline Chili.
If you listen hard, you can hear the entire city of Cincinnati gasping in horror. Here’s the hard truth, though: Burrow’s right.
If you’re not familiar with Skyline Chili, here’s a rundown: a plate of plain spaghetti is drowned with Cincinnati chili (a meat chili that is heavily spiced with cinnamon), and then topped with a massive amount of finely shredded cheddar cheese. Sometimes chopped raw onion or kidney beans are added on top of the chili, but either way, the cheese stays in its shredded form and is not melted.
What you’re essentially eating is wet spaghetti topped with cinnamon meat sauce. If you’ve ever wondered what would happen if a sentient pumpkin pie tried to make chili, Skyline is your answer. It tastes like someone dumped a box of Red Hots candy into a pot of tomato sauce. So of course you want ladle that all over a plate of plain, mushy spaghetti.
Despite all this, the biggest question is: Who thought this concoction would be made better by dumping unmelted plastic bag cheese on top of it? At one point in our history as humans, a person decided “this cinnamon-flavored meat and tomato pasta dish definitely needs cold shredded cheese.”
Here’s the kicker. With the spaghetti and meat sauce and cheese piled onto a plate, you practically need written instructions to figure out how to eat it without getting it all over the table and yourself. Who doesn’t love a meal that requires 25 napkins and blueprints, right?
Burrow is not alone in his dislike of Skyline Chili, but it’s the city’s signature dish for a reason: Plenty of people love it. Skyline has over 150 locations in four states, and there are a number of other Cincinnati chili-based restaurants like Empress Chili and Gold Star Chili. It’s one of the best-known regional foods in the country and it has many devotees.
Despite Burrow’s stated position on Skyline, fans will almost certainly embrace him if the Bengals choose to draft him. Bengals fans are some of the most hearty and dedicated football fans you’ll find anywhere. They support a team that lost five straight wild card games, and then quickly slid down into “hilariously bad” territory, and that’s just in the last decade. They understand pain, so they will no doubt understand and love a quarterback who isn’t fond of their city’s signature dish.
Of course, Burrow should also be wary and stay alert. Many fans will try to convince him that Skyline isn’t so bad, or that it’s actually wonderful, and wouldn’t he like to try some and see if he likes it more than he did before? Stand firm, Joe. Just say no.
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