Sunday, January 15, 2017

Index Update

My index of "Other San Antonio Restaurant Reviews (not Mexican, not Asian)" has been updated, finally. But now it's disappeared from the Contents list on the right of this blog. Until I figure out why and fix it, you can access it here.

(Actually, I know why; Google changed page formats on Blogger. I just have to figure out how to fix it.)

Monday, January 9, 2017

An Update

Josephine Street
400 East Josephine Street
(at 281)

When I reviewed this place five years ago, I said it was basically good enough food, with reasonable prices, excellent ambience, and very good service. Not so much anymore: while the effervescence of dining room -- complete with old-fashioned bar, juke box in the corner, and a real tree near the front -- makes for an enjoyable atmosphere at any meal; and while the prices are competitive for the sort of down-home Texas style cookin' you get, the food varied from disappointing to just barely okay. Nothing haute about the cuisine here, and that'd be just fine. Ordinarily.

But this last time, a few days ago, the service was pretty miserable. It took a long time to get menus, and then to get our orders placed. Then it took a long, long time to get the food. On the way to the table with our two plates, the waitress spilled watery sauce from my green chili chicken all over the floor and the table, and seemed unconcerned that both plates had, at some point, lain upon someone's chicken fried steak. They left cream gravy all over the table when she had to take them back to the kitchen because they'd gotten things completely wrong. And then a long time to get them back. By then, the food had cooled beyond the point of acceptability, but we were both hungry enough to eat it without further complaint (except, of course, to each other).


Green chili chicken is not a dish I'll ever order again. The tomatillo sauce is uninteresting. And I'll never get the fries again, either; they were limp and chewy, probably even when they were hot. My friend's Tony's chicken was a pounded and grilled chicken breast inundated with cheddar cheese and a few chives. Like I said, just okay. The Toll House Pie (a splurge for my friend's birthday) would have been pretty good if it weren't for the oddly jarring flavour imparted by the toasted walnuts.

THE CURMUDGEON'S RATINGS:
FOOD: 2 chili peppers (out of 5)
SERVICE: 1 chili pepper
AMBIENCE: 3 1/2 chili peppers
VALUE: 2 1/2 chili peppers
Josephine Street Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 

Friday, August 5, 2016

Oh, By the Way...

I hardly ever post restaurant reviews here anymore. Thank technology. Meanwhile, any recent thoughts on an eatin' place will be on Zomato.com. You can enjoy my wry, acerbic arrogance at www.zomato.com/passepartout22.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Sabrosas de Guanajuato
6825 San Pedro
(Just south of Oblate)

The very first time I ever heard the word "chilaquiles" was a small restaurant at the back of Jardín Unión in Guanajuato. A friend of mine, wanting to expose me to the local culture of his city, took me to El Penguis and ordered my breakfast. What I had this morning at Sabrosas de Guanajuato looked, smelled, and tasted exactly as I remember that breakfast many years ago.

In the interim, I've tried chilaquiles in perhaps three hundred different places, in Mexico and the US, and have learned that there are major regional variations in the dish, so that if you order it in Guanajuato, or Mexico City, or Laredo, or Bismarck, North Dakota, you may not get anything like what you expect.
What's that mean?
Last city inspection: November 2015
10 demerits

But the dish I had this morning was, like I say, exactly like what I would have gotten in Jardín Unión. And, style and memory aside, it was delicious. The fried tortilla chips (the actual "chilaquiles" for which the dish is named) were so perfectly cooked that you could cut them with a fork, yet still feel the crispiness when you bit into them. The salsa verde was piquant and tangy. The shreds of chicken had been slowly cooked for a long, long time and gave way readily in the mouth. And there was a generous dollop of sour cream to mix in, giving the dish that last bit of complexity in flavour, texture and temperature. It was served with good refried beans and two homemade tortillas (I chose flour because, well, ya soy gringo.)

If I had to choose between these and what I had all those years ago, I'd choose these; but only because the coffee at this restaurant is better -- that is, more to my liking -- than anything I ever got in Mexico. As was the service. Otherwise, I'd much rather be sitting in the Jardín.

Las Sabrosas de Guanajuato Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato