Saturday, September 02, 2006

Thursday Thirteen--I know I'm late!

Carol at She Lives got me thinking about why we don’t eat out very often any longer. It might make me sound like a food snob, but the food in the greater west valley area of Phoenix just isn’t as good as the food in Orange County California where we came from. I can’t come up with 13 good places to eat here. I can’t even come up with 5……so I thought I’d list the 13 places that we thought were awful!

1.Friends of ours had been raving about this Chinese buffet(unnamed for good reason) in Mesa for 6 months before they took us there. The food was lousy and the restaurant was dirty—I could hardly find anything to eat that didn’t make me want to gag. Don’t people notice when restaurants are grubby?

2.Mexican restaurant where our friend’s daughter had worked for 10 years. The food was passable, but very greasy—not that I don’t like greasy Mexican food, but with my cholesterol problem, the guilt was overwhelming.

3.A new Chinese buffet in Avondale called Bamboo Palace. The food was excellent at first, but has gone downhill. Some of the food is not hot now, and we all know how dangerous food can be if it isn’t kept hot enough! Danger of food poisoning. They’ve also cheaped out on many of their dishes, so they are not good any longer.

4.Another new Chinese buffet in Buckeye right by the grocery store we go to. Don’t remember the name. We waited in anticipation for it to open, because it was a lot closer to home. My husband and I love Chinese food. It finally opened, we waited a couple more weeks for the crowds to thin out and guess what? It was awful! You know how good real Chinese food tastes? Well this tasted like the poor leftovers that had been kept in the fridge for days and reheated.

5.Chili’s is one of my least favorite places, but the one we went to in Goodyear was really awful.

6.Cracker Barrel in Goodyear. Home cooking? No way, I don’t cook this crap. It was greasy, tasteless and over-breaded and salted.

7.In N Out Burger in Avondale—the only good In N Out is in Corona California—I haven’t found one anywhere that can beat it!

8.Subway, at least the one we tried after seeing a commercial for their Tuscan Chicken sandwich advertised on TV, was hideous. On a foot long, I got 4 tiny pieces of chicken breast and the “roasted vegetables” were 3 or 4 slimy overcooked pieces of bell pepper. The bread was like—I don’t know how to describe it—puffed up and dried out. A complete waste of money. I moved everything to one spot on the sandwich and threw the rest away.

9.Don’t ever go to the Olive Garden and think you are going to get good Italian food, or to the Red Lobster to get good seafood. One visit to each of those resulted in a vow never to step foot in them again. Both of those places serve food that tastes like TV dinners at best. I like Macaroni Grill (aka Carrabba’s Italian Grill) for Italian and several places near the ocean for seafood. I will say that I did get a good piece of wild caught Coho Salmon from the Fry’s fish counter last week. I poached it and it was good hot as well as chilled the next day.

10. I never, never eat at Denny’s. Even though the food is not very expensive, it isn’t worth ten cents. Really, I’m not a food snob, I’m just careful with my food dollars and I know what I like. I’ll try someplace once, but if the food isn’t good, I’ll never go again.

11. I will rarely eat at Applebee’s. I learned the hard way that I must remember it is a coffee shop, not a fine dining establishment. Regardless of how good those specials look that they advertise on TV, don’t believe it. Stick to burgers, sandwiches and salads if it’s the only place in town to eat.

12. Fast food joints with drive-thrus are on my hit-list. McDonalds always gives me heartburn, but it’s a safe place to stop and go to the bathroom when you are traveling. Wendy’s—love their chili—hate everything else. At Arby’s never eat the roast beef (pieces/parts molded into something they thin slice—ick)! But their market sandwiches are quite good, with lettuce, tomato and fresh bread. If I’m gonna spend money, I’d rather wait and go to Baja Fresh, their food truly is Fresh and delicious and low-fat too!

13. No one should eat at truck stops. Truckers have the worst taste in food. Most of them smoke, so their taste buds are deadened. So they like the over-salted, over cooked, greasy spoon food. I travel from AZ to CA to visit my mother and am never tempted to stop. I bring my own snacks for the 4.5 hour drive.

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