I broke one of my cardinal rules the other day and went to lunch with a friend at a corporate hash house. I won't mention the name of the culprit but I'll give you a hint, it sounds like a fruit and an insect. It turned out to be a good thing, that is, to go against my moral dining compass, because the experience (and I use the word loosely) was everything I expected, irritating with sub-par food served in a cookie-cutter corporate designed restaurant.
Lets begin with the non-stop obnoxious music piped throughout the joint that I'm convinced is a a perfect table-turning ploy to irritate customers so they'll eat fast and leave. I ordered the French onion soup, I know, I know, how could I? Yes, it was made with a canned and overly salty beef broth but the alternative, broccoli and potato soup sounded like something served in an orphanage in Dickens's time. Of course, the soup was barley tepid under the molten globular of rubbery cheese that looked like silly putty and the broth-soaked slice of bread that came swimming in the bowl would've been perfect for my toothless Granny.
My friend and I decided to pass on the entrees and ordered a trio of appetizers, pork wonton tacos, cheeseburger sliders and dynamite shrimp. The wonton tacos were tasty but the pork was refrigerator-cold. The over-cooked sliders were were sloppily made and served true to their name, half on the dry, thick bun and half on the plate. The dynamite shrimp was dripping in grease and served without its dipping sauce. When asked for the fugitive condiment, our server brought over a dish full of even more oil to dunk our greasy shrimp into. Yummy.
This corporate silo needs to change their motto from, "There's no place like the neighborhood," to "There's no place for them in the neighborhood."
Hang on to your epicurean dignity,