365 Restaurants, 2 Kids, 1 Giant Fiasco
If you’re a regular reader of this blog or know us, you’ve probably picked up on the fact that Ogre is totally wrapped around Mina’s finger. He cannot stand to see her upset, crying, or hurt. All three of those things happened yesterday when she told him she wanted to eat at “Lovehorns” with him and he had no idea what she was talking about. I told him that she had said something to me about that when I picked her up from school and I also had no idea what she was talking about either, but at least I didn’t make her cry! He accused me of rubbing salt into his wounds. Hence, tonight’s dinner choice: Love and War in Texas. He figured out sometime last night at dinner that it was the restaurant she was talking about.
I was starving from not eating dinner last night at work and only eating breakfast before crashing and catching up on my sleep debt. Needless to say, I was ready to chow down when we got to the restaurant. The parking lot was packed so much so that I thought there would be a wait. Ogre dropped me off to put our name on the list and when I walked up I was seated right away. It seems there would be live music on the patio (with a cover charge) and that might have been where everyone was. Anyway, I was sitting for quite some time before the rest of the Phipps team showed up. Enough time for me to order everyone’ drinks except Ogre’s and to order an appetizer -I went with the Texas 1015 Onion Rings (1015 Tumbleweeds).
When they finally showed up, Ogre set Benjamin down, who decided that the place he had been sat down at would be where he would stay so I ended up being blocked in to my spot. We were going to let him sit like a big boy without his clip on chair, but he indicated that he wanted to sit in his chair so we set it up for him. Our waitress came by again to get Ogre’s drink order and he opted for the 2 pint Shiner Black. When I asked Mina if she was happy to be eating at Love and War in Texas, I realized why she thought it was Lovehorns, she was hearing “Love and War in” as “Lovin’ Horn.” First order of business, though, was for me to take a picture of her with her sticker that she got when they walked in.
A short while later our Onion Rings arrived. Mina said they looked like a flower. Ogre was still needing to peruse the vast menu. The menu is interesting because a lot of the entrees are named for historical places and events in Texas such as The Brazoria County. Mina decided that she would be having steak tonight. Probably would’ve been a good choice for Ogre and I, also, but we were still reeling from Monday night’s expensive meal. Benjamin kept reaching for the onion rings and then telling me and signing his special sign for hot. Ogre cooled one off for him. I noticed that the onion rings were actually pretty spicy as was the cayenne pepper cream sauce. Didn’t stop Benji, though. Ogre was pretty annoyed with Benjamin’s antics of taking an onion ring, dipping it in ketchup or ranch, sucking off the dip and eating some of the breading, setting it on his plate and grabbing another. I didn’t know what the big deal was, it’s not like we were going to finish all those onion rings anyway. And anytime Ogre would prevent him from taking a fresh onion ring, Benjamin would decompensate. Ogre told me that my nonchalance was why he was doing it in the first place. Eh.
When she came back, we ordered our entrees. Ogre ordered the Buffalo Fajitas del Rio and I went for the Spicy Shrimp Juanito (I subbed the Texican Rice for the Cilantro Lime Rice). Mina wanted the Sirloin Steak (we subbed the baked potato for broccoli). Mina continued on coloring her picture and Benjamin continued making a disaster area in front of him.
We did not have to wait too long before our entrees came out. I must admit I was disappointed to see that my shrimp dish looked like shrimp sitting in salsa surrounding a bed of rice. Benjamin was super excited to see the steam rising from Ogre’s fajitas.
Ogre and Mina were also pretty stoked with their dishes and Ogre offered to cut up Mina’s steak and then complained when she said that she did want it cut up.
I gave Benjamin some broccoli, rice, and asked Ogre to give him some of his beans. We also gave him a tortilla to munch on. Benjamin ate it all up and pulled the bowl of cayenne pepper cream sauce towards him to dip his tortilla in, which was pretty gross to watch. He finished up the sauce completely, at times, whining for water because it was spicy.
During dinner, Mina brought up the State Fair again, doing a wonderful impression of Big Tex while wearing Papa’s hat (not a cowboy hat, it’s actually a Filipino hat!).
Mina was doing a great job and finished up all of her broccoli and the portion of steak that we set out for her. In fact, she, herself, was surprised at her achievemt. Ogre, of course, is always a good eater. This time, Mommy was the one not doing such a great job eating. I ate up half of the shrimp and most of the rice, but I just wasn’t into my dinner tonight.
I asked Mina if she wanted to get dessert here or at the ice cream store and she said the ice cream store, so we finished up dinner and planned to go there after we left the restaurant. I asked Ogre to take Benji to the bathroom to clean him up while Mina finished her last couple pieces of steak.
When we walked out of the restaurant, Ogre had me wait with Mina while he got the car (apparently, they’d parked quite a ways away). While he and Benji were gone, Mina told me that her throat hurt and then about 15 seconds later said that she felt like she was going to throw up. About 15 second after that she was puking into the bushes. Ugh!! No ice cream tonight…
I was not too impressed with anything we had here. Starting with the appetizer, the 1015 Tumbleweeds (Onion Rings) were not that great. The breading was limp and the onions were very coarsely chopped so that the onion slices were pretty thick. This made for a chewy onion ring, which I am not a fan of. These were slightly spicy. The cayenne pepper cream sauce was basically spiced up ranch, but I love ranch, so I thought it was good (and so did Benjamin!).
We all tried each other’s entrees. Ogre inspected my Spicy Shrimp Juanito (described as Shrimp Scampi…Texas style). He had some salsa for his Buffalo Fajitas, and, yes, it was in fact, shrimp sitting in salsa. It just wasn’t very interesting or very good. Ogre’s Buffalo Fajitas Del Rio were a little too tough for my liking, but both Ogre and Mina thought it was good. Mina also liked her Sirloin Steak. Overall, Ogre and I thought the food was average at best.
The kids menu had a nice variety of food for $5.95 ranging from chicken nuggets, nachos, quesadillas, a hamburger, a sirloin steak, among other items.
Our service today was good. Our waitress was attentive and interacted very sweetly with Benjamin. I think he liked her a lot. He tried to hand her his plate when she was standing at the other table. We had to distract him and put the plate down for fear of it landing on the floor! Luckily, she came over after she was done talking to the other table and he was able to hand her his plate.
The food came out at a nice tempo so that Benjamin was not left to be bored and fussy, yet, we were able to enjoy the appetizer. We certainly did not feel rushed either.
This is your average kid friendly restaurant. It has a children’s menu and they hand out crayons and a paper placemant with coloring and activities. Mina asked if it was a “loud” restaurant and I told her it was; she was happy about that. No one can hear your kids being loud, crying, or both. If you like this sort of Tex Tex food and Texas ambiance (which is great, by the way), this would be a good place to take the family.
Ogre just wanted to clarify that the Mina sickness in the bushes incident is in no way related to our meal. She appears to have caught some sort of stomach bug.
The total: $52.82 (includes a $6 34 oz beer -Ogre says, “that’s some cheap beer”)
Childsplate.com chronicles our journey to find the perfect family restaurant. We are looking for restaurants with excellent food and a great attitude towards kids, even the whiny, cranky ones! We will be headed out to a different restaurant every single day to provide ourselves (and you) with some entertainment and good information about DFW area restaurants. We hope you will visit frequently and use our experiences to create some fun dining experiences of your own! Watch out, DFW, the Phipps family is going out to eat!