One night I was out with some of the boys and we went to our favorite ribs joint across town. At that time there were not that many places for ribs in New York City so, we had to make do with what there was.
The mood was festive, the pitchers of beer and bourbon flowing, and stacks of ribs coming out of the kitchen in a seemingly endless stream. Baby backs, beef ribs, St. Louis ribs, all slathered in their signature sauce. As the bones began to pile up, we all became pensive. How could these ribs be so good? How could they be so fresh?? This is New York City, not Texas???
I posed a question to the table, “So, these ribs are fabulous. How do you suppose they get them?”
Everyone was quiet.
My buddy George thought for a moment and said, “Did you notice that tall parking garage behind this building?”
My friend Harry said, “Yeah, I live across the street. I see it every day.”
George went on, “I bet that’s how they do it.”
“I’m lost. What are you talking about?”, I said.
George wiped the barbecue sauce off of his chin and said, “Vertical Farming.”
Tony looked at him like he had three heads and said, “You’ve had too much Bourbon. Farming on the Upper East Side???”
George went on, “Think about it. A parking garage is perfect. You put the young, small, immature cows on the top level. As they get bigger and fatter you move them down a ramp to the next level. So, by the time they reach the bottom they are perfect. When an order goes to the kitchen, a cow is pushed down a chute, through the knives, and into the oven.”
The table was silent as George went for another rack of ribs.
This conversation took place in 1983.
Nearly thirty years later I come across this -
And this -
In all honesty, George was right. This is a perfectly feasible and great idea.
We were just ahead of our time.
Get with the program world!