Monday, September 19, 2011

Chuy's sets the bar but gets no love from foodies

Foodies are a funny lot and I hesitate to throw my name into that pot.  I've never found a group that so wants to hate on chain stores more than the food crowd.  And I'm not talking just fast food.  If there is more than one restaurant by the same name they will normally write it off without regard and I just don't understand why.  But they probably don't agree with the grumpy fat man either so to each their own I guess.  Let's talk Chuy's Tex Mex!

When I first moved down to Austin I ate at Chuy's every now and then but didn't think much of it.  Being from Tulsa I've feasted at my fair share of high quality Tex Mex restaurants.  Some chains, some local.  I've also found several bad ones.  You know, the ones that will serve you taquitos from Sam's Club and call it home cooking.  Fortunately those places never last.  Over the years I've come to love Chuy's for all it is and all it offers.  Where else can you get a potato chip crusted chicken breast or a big as yo' face burrito?  Well sure there are probably others that offer these items but Chuy's has been fairly consistent over the years.  I've had a few bad waiters and 2009 wasn't their best year for cooks but overall they do a great job.  Nobody's perfect but I get the sense that they are trying.  If you've been reading me for a while you'll know what I'm talking about.

This evening I had the lime and hatch green chile sauced cheese enchilada and chicken chile relleno.  It's part of their annual hatch green chile festival menu.  I always get sucked in to the festival and while the food is good and the flavors are still bold it's just not me.  I like the #1 combo and for me it always sets the bar.  The taco is full of spicy ground beef, the two cheese enchiladas are sauced with that wonderful chili gravy, those big chips dipped in queso sauce, the chicken taquitos... beans... rice... I'm full already.  I always consider getting the smaller dish but really for the extra buck why not enjoy all those flavors.  And don't forget the creamy jalapeno ranch with your chips. And the regular salsa is good too.  Nice and chunky with just the right amount of heat and twang.  They just do all their flavors right at Chuy's.

I've seen many terrible reviews about Chuy's but if you spend the time to read them it always seems to end with either the guy has a bad stomach and can't even take relatively light spiciness of the rice or they just want to push their favorite taco trailer that really isn't all that good anyway.  My point?  Foodies always have an agenda and are quite full of themselves when they tell you about their superior palate.  I rarely find those reviews helpful and that's one reason I write.  I try to give an honest description of the restaurant, the food and the experience.  If I'm not doing that then I'm not doing my job.  And that's where you come in.  If I'm not doing my job you should let me know.

And with that rant I'll see you tomorrow.

Chuy's (Arboretum) on Urbanspoon    Chuy's (Barton Springs) on Urbanspoon    Chuy's (North Austin) on Urbanspoon    Chuy's (Round Rock) on Urbanspoon

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