The experience

Ritzy'sAhhhhhh.  I’m off today, I’ve had a massage, I don’t have a migraine.  The days I work, I pretty much am tied to the area so I can meet my response time.  Since I was not worried about being tied down, I thought it’d be fun to maybe do some shopping at Grapevine Mills or to see if the lights at the Gaylord were anything like they were in Nashville’s Gaylord Opryland.  We headed out to that side of town pretty early as we did not want to meet rush hour traffic.  We drove around Grapevine Mills as Ogre had some crazy idea that there was an Aquarium restaurant there (they have one at Opry Mills in Nashville that Mina LOVED).  We did not see one on any of the signs or when I looked it up on my Blackberry, so we aborted that idea.  There are a lot of restaurants that border Grapevine Mills and I thought that Ritzy’slooked kind of cute with it’s old school diner qualities.  It was either that or Saltwater Willy’s and we thought Ritzy’s would be less pricey. 

We walk in and were a little weirded out by the grass decor and spoons on the wall. 

 strange decor


strange decor


I found a place for us to sit and we started looking over the menu.  Even though I’d found us a table to sit at, the kids thought it was more fun to run around.  The restaurant seemed laid back enough that this did not seem to be a problem. 

messing around

I did make them settle down once Ogre went up to the counter order just so I did not have to dine with wound up kids, even I wouldn’t want to dine with my own kids when they’re all crazy.

Benji was ready to sit down once he found that there was “ah ah do” (apple juice) to drink.  Mina found it super cool to slowly spin and balance the metal post that we put our number on.  She was dancing to it and making us crack up. 

Then, she even got Benji to start dancing…


Benji made sure to let me know when he ran out of his drink and wanted more.  He said “mo mo ah ah do” and turned his cup over.  Thank goodness it was empty!



While we waited, I went over to check out the ice cream choices since now Ogre was sitting with the kids.  This was much to Ogre’s delight for some reason who thought it would be funny to capture me perusing the ice cream case. 

Mommy's skipping to dessert


Mina had to, of course, run to the bathroom and we let her go by herself after reminding her to make sure she could reach everything before she was “all in.”  When she got back, we realized we should have also reminded her to push up her sleeves as those were now soaking wet.

I knew that Mina had ordered a burger and pointed to Mina when the server said something about a burger.  My and Mina’s eyes grew three times when we saw this huge double patty burger placed before her!  WOW!  That’s quite the burger I said.  Then we realized that it was some kind of Pepper Steak Burger or something and that one was not hers.  Whew!  No way Mina was tackling that thing.  The rest of our order was on the tray including the correct burger for Mina.  Turns out he just had another customer’s burger on the tray.

yummy burger


The first thing out of Mina’s mouth was that this was the best burger ever!  Glad she liked it!  I was busy trying to cut up Benji’s hot dog before he got to frustrated that he had yet to eat anything!  Then I cut my own sandwich in half so I could handle it better and we all dug in.

The rest of dinner was pretty uneventful.  OH!  WAIT!  I did not even mention the two fiascos.  First, Benji almost tipped the table in his chair, I think he pushed off the bench with his foot because he’d be fine up until the time the table started to slowly tip back.  Ogre and I were able to stabilize the table in time for Benji not to be squooshed AND my drink did not spill.   For a little background, we recently discovered that one of the dogs must have chewed the buckle on his seat and they did not have any chairs in stock at Babies R Us, so we used this defective chair again and mid way through dinner, Benji slipped down through his chair!  It required a coordinated effort of Ogre and me to pull him back up into the chair and seat him properly. He was fine, but I told Ogre to throw the chair away as soon as we got home.  He even entertained the idea of “accidentally” forgetting the chair at the restaurant.  Lesson learned: don’t use defective clip-on chairs!

wipe face


Pfft, I can’t believe I wrote that the rest of dinner was uneventful.  Anyway, next up came dessert.  The kids got a scoop of ice cream with their kids meals and I ordered a sundae.  I had not even take one bite when Mina was begging to have a bite of mine.  Of course I let her and then out of the corner of my eye I see Benji looking desperately at my sundae.  “Bi?” he asked with eyebrows raised.  Of course.  He liked mine more than his and kept asking for more bites.  Then he proceeded to sneeze three times over his banana ice cream and Ogre asked me if I wanted some banana ice cream.  Gross.  You know that kind of thing grosses me out.  Not grossed out enough to quit on my sundae, though, I ate that baby up!  (and switched to a different spoon for Benji’s bites!)

Its an ice cream wig


The food

This is supposed to be kind of like a diner, I guess.  It reminds us of a more expensive with less choices Steak ‘n Shake.  I will give it that the quality seems better…

Puller Pork SandwichI ordered the BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich.  Don’t ask me why I ordered that in a joint like this.  I guess the problem is I’ll never order it in a true BBQ place because I’ll be getting ribs or brisket in that scenario.  Anyway, it wasn’t that great, but it was certainly edible and not bad.  The pork was tender enough, but not super tender.  I guess I’d say that it was average.


Grilled Chicken SandwichOgre ordered the Blackened Chicken Sandwich. While the chicken was not as tender as yesterday, he still thought that it was pretty good sandwich and complimented the honey mustard that came on it. 


Onion RingsOgre and I ordered a basket of onion rings to share, which they claim are world famous.  I don’t know about world-famous, but they were pretty gosh darn tasty.  Met my and Ogre’s stingy approval!  Nice and crisp and the onion does not slide out of the breading.


BurgerMina ordered a Cheeseburger with Bacon and stated that it was the best burger ever!!  I’ll just warn that Mina is pretty loose with her compliments, but she did like it and she’s pretty loose with her criticisms as well and did not have any tonight!


Hot DogWe ordered a hot dog for Benji and he ate almost all of it.  Both of the kids’ meals came with fruit, which seemed to be fresh and consisted of pineapple and melons.  Their meals also came with ice cream (strawberry for Mina, banana for Benji). 


Hot fudge sundaeSince they were getting dessert, I got dessert, too!  I ordered a sundae with Philadelphia Style Vanilla and Hot Fudge with whipped cream.  It was very tasty -the hot fudge really carried the sundae.  The kids thought it was awesome as well!

ice cream for Mina


The service

Quasi-counter service.  You order at the counter and get your own drinks, but they bring out your food to you and clean up after you.  The waiter that cleared our table as we were finishing up was very gracious to Benji handing him his dirty dishes. 


The kids

This place is definitely a kid friendly restaurant since it is casual and has a lot of food that cater to most children’s palettes.  No crayons or anything like that, but I wouldn’t necessarily expect that here and the tempo of the food is very quick.  They have a kids menu with all the traditional American child’s fare such as Chicken Tenders, Burgers, Macaroni and Cheese, Hot Dogs, etc.

We also saw that if you buy a Ritzy’s shirt for $4.99, that kid eats free everytime they were it to the restaurant.  Since the kids meals are 3.99-4.99, it ends up paying for itself pretty quickly -IF you think to wear the shirt and come here with some amount of frequency.

It’s somewhat of a cute restaurant to go to for a quick bite, but, I’ll be honest, Team Phipps would probably just head to Steak ‘n Shake.  Flame on!

The total: around 30 bucks (receipt is in the car)


Rants, Raves, and Ramblings

Yes, Benji is wearing the same clothes as yesterday.  He was changed in to his pajamas after his afternoon bath at Lala’s house and we did not change him out of his pajamas when we brought him to Lala’s this morning.  Typically, my parents will change Benji’s outfits once, or even twice while he’s over there.  For some reason (I think because he’s so gosh darn cute in these pajamas), they didn’t put on different clothes today.  But rest assured, it’s not the same day and we do bathe and change our children’s clothes, just not today.

Related Fiascos