The experience

We waited for Mina to get back from music class with Oma and Grandpoo and waited for Benjamin to wake up from his late afternoon nap.  And we waited and waited…and waited.  Finally at 7:30, we decided we’d better wake him up.  By the time Team Phipps got it in the car, it was getting pretty late and we still needed to pick up a plant for Mina’s school at Home Depot.  This chain of events led us to a restaurant I’d probably never go into, El Paso on Central.  Ogre says this place has been around since he was a kid. 

We walked in and were seated right away and our drink order was taken before I could even sit down.  We looked over the menu while the kids played.  Benji piped up, “I want queso!”  We agreed that we’d order some queso and when the waiter returned with our drinks, we could see Benji eyeing his tray for the queso.  We ordered the queso and had to talk Benji down from a ledge as he was very upset that the queso had not arrived yet.

Luckily, the queso came out very quickly.  We asked for some empty bowls to dole out queso for the kids and Benji dug right in, dipping his chips in the queso, turning his chip upside down as he put it into his mouth so queso was dripping everywhere.  Benji is into this new thing where he likes to keep his hands clean, though, so every two minutes he would hold out his hands to Papa and say, “Wipe hand!”  Ogre blames my children’s obsession with clean hands on me.  I don’t think this is a bad thing, personally.

We ordered dinner and chatted while waiting for our food.  We forgot our camera and my cell phone, so we couldn’t take pictures today.  It was kind of nice to not worry about taking pictures and flashes going off!

Our dinner arrived and I mentioned that I ordered a cup of soup, not a bowl (which is what I got).  At first, the waiter tried to tell me that was a cup, I thought what the heck does a bowl look like then!  But then later told me I was right, it was a bowl, but they’d only charge me for a cup.  Fair enough.

Benji saw my chalupa with queso and said, “want some.”  I gave him a piece, he turned it over, licked it and put it on his plate.  Nice waste of food, Benj. 

Mina was not participating in dinner very much since she ate with Oma and Grandpoo earlier today, but did manage to eat a piece of the cheese quesadillas. 

We finished up dinner and decided that we’d skip dessert tonight and head home.

The food


We ordered queso to start (no surprise there!).   Ogre and Benji both thought it was pretty good.  Benji ate half the bowl himself.

I ordered a chalupa with queso and tortilla soup.  The chalupa with queso was good.  Not outstanding.  Just good.  The tortilla soup was pretty bland and uninspired.  I asked for the tortilla chips and avocado on the side and all that was left was chunks of not very tender chicken and tomatoes in broth.

Ogre ordered a two enchilada platter with an extapa (spelling??) and a chicken ranchera enchilada.  He thought it was tasty but the chicken was a little on the dry side.

The kids had cheese quesadillas and both of them liked it, but Ogre and I forgot to try it ourselves. 

The service

A little strange, really.  Our waiter must have been new.  I’m going to blame it on that because he was a pretty nice guy.  Ogre wanted to get two different enchiladas on his platter and he could not understand that and eventually had to call someone over to help him figure it out.  He also was a little forgetful about some requested items and instead of getting me the cup of soup brought me a bowl.  The food comes out at a good tempo.


The kids

It’s kid friendly.  No kids activities, but they have a kids menu and it’s very casual and laid back.

So, honestly, I don’t think we’ll be headed back, not because there was anything wrong with the restaurant, but I just think there are so many other better choices!

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