Friday, April 11, 2014

The Fajita Del Mar Conundrum

Chipotle Shrimp

Have you ever experienced an imbalance in the solar system or a paranormal occurrence when ordering a meal at one our fine Baytown restaurants?  I might not be correctly identifying what we experienced with any degree of accuracy.  It could have been a dub-step in the space-time continuum, or some bizarre sequence of miscommunication on a grand scale; whatever it was, it has never happened before and hopefully, won’t happen again.

My Bride and I had a hankering for some delicious Mexican food and it may be argued that the large restaurant on the main drag with the big sign and the beautiful architecture doesn’t serve authentic Mexican food, but it does indeed, according to my discerning palate. 

We elected to sit out on the patio, as it was about 75 degrees F. out with a nice breeze and low humidity.  “Wow, it is really nice out here,” I said, looking around and my beautiful bride agreed.  It was our first time under the open sky and we liked it already – we just didn’t have a clue that Jupiter, or Mercury, or maybe even Saturn was pulling a strong magnetic invisible force against us.

“I’m starving!” my bride exclaimed.  I knew for a fact that all she had for breakfast was one banana and I forsook from my normal healthy breakfast of boudin, mustard, and onions and ate oatmeal with walnuts and raisins.

“I could eat an entire rack of endangered Sumatran rhinoceros ribs with a side order of whooping crane,” I remarked and thumped my rib cage for effect.  “Where are the chips and dips?” I said; looking around, ready to begin tough-grubbing.  I casually noted the arrival of a steady stream of customers, including an entire tour bus, but not to worry.  We were already seated.  Our chips were surely on their way.

Now on the million other occasions we’ve been there, the chips usually arrive before you can get seated real good and pull out your Smartphone to check your social status.  Fifteen minutes passed and the waitress arrived and we told her we were ready to order.
I’ll be forthright and come out and say that I “don’t order anything I can’t pronounce!” which incidentally isn’t true, but I love to say it to anyone who will listen. 

However, we were literally starving, so I cut out my usual witty anecdotes and butchering the King’s Spanish, I ordered a numbero unoh, and pointed at the chipotle shrimp.  My bride is much more cultured than I and speaking what sounded to me like Castilian Spanish, gave offered her request.  The African-American lady taking the order was impressed, I could tell.

“Uh, we never got the chips and dips, ma’am”  I said and nodded my head side to side, which due to the fact that I was famished, made me nauseous and a bit dizzy.

She assured me she would get on it immediately and departed to get us “some dip”.  Another ten minutes passed and the chips miraculously appeared in the hands of one of the wait staff.  I say that because I didn’t see them until they were standing by the table with the delicious appetizer.
We had just about consumed the bowl of tortilla chips and dip when our food arrived at the hands of a new waitress – well, my food arrived.  My bride’s meal was not what she ordered.  Aghast, the waitress announced she would return with the correct meal.  “Uh, we never got our drinks also.  One sweet tea and one unsweet tea, ma’am.”

“Heavens!  I’ll be right back!”  To her credit, she bounded off like a kangaroo, except in a figurative sense.  Ten quick minutes later, her delicious Tex-Mex victuals arrived and five minutes later our drinks.  I could feel a strange quiver of paranormal activity, or maybe some of those CO2 emissions I’ve read so much about in the atmosphere, but ignoring the skin tingles, continued to dig into my numbero unoh meal with gusto.   

As the new waiter set down the drinks, we noticed there were no delicious packets of artificial sweetener on the table, or that there wasn’t no “gwacklemoley or picro de gano”, as I attempted to pronounce it, accompanying my bride’s meal.

The eager to please bringer of our tasty food zipped off and came back about five minutes later and we completed our dining experience without further atmospheric or 6th dimensional disturbances.  I can safely attest that none of these things have ever happened in this finery to my personal knowledge and the food was totally satisfying and delicious.  The obvious answer was the wait staff was simply over-whelmed by the incredible number of patrons – or something very strange was happening in...the Force.

Enter the manager.  When this fine gentleman caught wind of our culinary dilemma, he personally came to our table and explaining the circumstances as extra-ordinary, promptly reduced our bill to the point that it embarrassed my bride.  She placed a ten dollar bill on the table as a generous tip and we left, fat and happy.  Will we be back?  You better believe it!


Anonymous said...

You lost me a del mar, no me gusta el marisco. However, sounds like a win-win if you are patient with the waitstaff for sure. I have a soft spot for waiters and waitresses when they make the effort and I tend to adopt them and over-tip, if that's possible. JC

Anonymous said...

Great article in the paper this morning. DDC

. . . . . said...

The Del Mar is our go-to to-go order when the boss is buying. I've found most restaurants on the Gulf Coast aren't used to serving patrons on their patio, since there's only about 3 days a year anyone wants to sit out there. They probably don't even have the patio tables numbered and listed on their waitstaff marker board! LH

Anonymous said...

Their shrimp en-brochette (spelling?) are just about as good as Pappasito's, which is something I never thought I'd say. I order that every time I go. JL

Anonymous said...

I love that place! CB

Christine said...

Thanks for being so patient and positive with your waitstaff! Too many people fly off the handle at the first sign of anything less than impeccable service, even when some of it may be out of the waiters hands. It too have a soft spot for people in those jobs. I've been there and my son is currently at that very establishment working to pay for his car! Great post, thanks for the read!

It can only happen while shopping!

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