365 Restaurants, 2 Kids, 1 Giant Fiasco
I am going to preface this post by saying there was quite a bit of disagreement amongst the Phippsters for star rating and title of the post. I’ll get to that later. Oma was out of town this week, so we invited Grandpoo (these are Mina and Benji’s grandparents) to dinner with us. He and we have been wanting to try Peggy Sue BBQ for quite some time, in fact, when we went to County Line, our original plan was to eat at Peggy Sue, but my job got in the way. This time, I picked a day when I wouldn’t be on call. It was quite the car pool to get to the restaurant. I picked up Mina, we picked up Ogre, drove to Grandpoo’s house to get him and then headed to Lolo’s (their other grandfather) to pick up Benji, then FINALLY we were on our way to Snider Plaza.
Parking can be tight in that area, so Ogre dropped us off in front of the restaurant. The kids were immediately drawn to a little bench with built in little side tables (like you see in older schoolhouses). When we were told we could be seated, Benji raised quite the fuss. Next, we started to raise a little bit of a fuss. We had a total of 5 people and they wanted to sit us at small 4 top. They kept saying, “But it’s 4 and a baby right?” pointing at Benjamin. I tried to explain that we wouldn’t fit. So they showed us a small booth -again, not really going to work very well. They didn’t offer to put tables together and so we were going to try to make do with Ogre sitting at the end of the table. Luckily, the group left from one of only two large booths. We quickly packed up and moved to that table.
Mina, of course, had to go to the restroom right off. Ogre took her. I could see Ogre hovering by the bathrooms. While they were gone, we put in our drink orders. When they got back, Ogre said that Mina told him, “That was the smallest bathroom EVER!” He said it was so small, both of them couldn’t fit in there.
Benjamin was already asking for “dow, dow.” We gave him some sugar packets to play with. The waitress dropped off our drinks and ran off before we could put in our appetizer order. When she finally returned, we were able to order the Lonestar Roundup and went and ahead and ordered dinner. The kids were being loud so I had to tell them to “Shhh.” Benji just mocked me and laughed. Mina, my good girl, piped down. Ogre suggested that Mina and I split the full rack of Baby Back Ribs, Grandpoo ordered the Rib Combo, and Ogre ordered the Two Meat Plate with brisket and sausage.
Grandpoo and Ogre spent the two extra bucks to get the Salad Bar and both were very impressed with the selection and homemade dressings. Ogre was also able to grab some crackers from the bar to keep the kids busy with full mouths. Mina was also forcing Benjamin to be little red riding hood with her red napkin irritating poor Benji. The arrival of the appetizer distracted Mina and excited Benjamin. We cut up some of the sausage for the kids. Mina complained that the BBQ sauce was too spicy. There are also three other condiment bottles on the table. One was a sweeter, more mild BBQ sauce and the other was “ketchup.” She decided that the mild BBQ sauce would be an adequate dip.
Benjamin had another love/hate relationship with food. He liked the sausage, but it had a peppery kick to it that made him cry and grab his water, but after the heat went away, he’d go for more. He kept doing this until the spice dissipated or he acclimated to it so that he was able to eat and completely enjoy his sausage. He also requested some “di di” and we reluctantly obliged, by the time the entrees arrived, he was starting to just take his hands to feed himself ranch and BBQ sauce. Gross!
I cut up a couple of ribs for Mina and gave her some corn to eat as her “vegetable.” I also gave Benjamin some corn and toast and took away the “di di.” Grandpoo expressed some concern with the messiness of the Baby Backs. No problem for me, I eat ribs with a knife and fork. I have a thing with using my hands as utensils (I’m rebelling against my Filipino culture).
We had to encourage Mina to eat the corn and she complained that it was because she couldn’t scoop it off her plate despite giving her a spoon. I offered her the little bowl to eat out of. She was happy with this decision until she bit her tongue. She was crying and kept crying until Grandpoo made her (and the rest of us) laugh by pretending to cry, too. Her tears quickly turned to laughter. Even Benji was laughing!
We warned her that we were going to keep moving through dinner. Ogre offered her some ketchup out of the red opaque condiment bottle and she took it, but once she tried it she informed us that it wasn’t ketchup. Ogre tried it and said it was, it was just some other brand, probably. I tried it, too, and it was not like any ketchup I’ve ever tasted. Hmmm, a ketchup bottle mystery.
Everyone finished dinner, except Mina, and we were about to order dessert. The dishes were now piled high on our table as no one had been by to clear dishes. Our waitress came by and cleared half of the dishes, we told her we did want to order dessert and she disappeared. We waited and waited until finally another guy showed up to clear the rest of the dishes and get our dessert order.
We asked this guy about the “ketchup.” He said, yes, it was ketchup, but that he agreed it tastes a little off. He described it as “sour.” I asked him if they made it in-house and he said no. He didn’t have much else to say about it except that he doesn’t care for it. Neither did we.
There are three desserts and we ordered one of each and a scoop of ice cream for Benji. Mina and I were going to share so I asked for an extra cup for Mina. Lucky for her, she finished her dinner. Our waitress returned with our desserts and handed me an empty bowl. I told her I wanted a cup or a glass for Mina and not a bowl, I know she heard and understood me and she seemed like she was going to get another glass for me. The guys started in on their desserts. No one except Benji seemed overly thrilled with their desserts and there were some discussion about the fried pie. Mina and I continued to wait for her glass. Finally, Ogre took her drink cup and poured the contents out of it so we could use it. Thank goodness that he did because that glass never did come.
Inconsistent across the board is the best was to describe today’s food experience. It started out very promising. Everything on the Lonestar Roundup was excellent. It comes with 2 torpedos (cream cheese deep fried jalapenos), 2 brisket quesadillas, and 2 sausages. The guys also said that the salads were very good. Ogre mentioned that he thought the salad at Offshore’s Nextdoor was better, but that this was still pretty good.
I’ve discussed this before, but it’s important to keep in mind how subjective BBQ is. I like my BBQ sweet and/or vinegary (like Memphis or Carolina BBQ). Therefore, I loved the Baby Back Ribs, they are glazed in brown sugar and they are sweet. Too sweet for Grandpoo’s taste. I thought my ribs were nice and tender, they could’ve been a little more meaty, but it was just enough for Mina and me. Grandpoo commented that they were too dry. What impressed me the most about the ribs was that the sweetness seemed to be infused into the meat and not just “surface deep.”
In addition to the Baby Backs, Grandpoo’s dinner came with Spare Ribs, he and Ogre thought they were above average. Ogre’s dinner had the same type of sausage from the appetizer, so he obviously liked that. His second meat was the brisket, which I’m still confused about why he chose it since it says it’s “lean” meat on the menu. All of us like our brisket on the fattier side. He said that the brisket was below average: too dry and not tender -perhaps it also needed to be cooked longer.
Then there were the sides. I ordered corn and fried okra. I’ve never had bad fried okra, I tell Ogre that it’s virtually impossible to mess it up and today’s was no exception. Mina wanted corn over broccoli, I anticipated that the corn would come from a can and I think I was right about that. Not very good corn. Grandpoo took one bite of the pinto beans and set it aside, he told me later that it might’ve been the worst pinto beans he’s ever had. His other side was mashed potatoes and he didn’t comment about them. Grandpoo is pretty vocal and opinionated, so if it was bad, I’m sure I’d be writing about it. Ogre also got fried okra; he said that his other side, the potato salad, was average at best. He says it tasted like cold potatoes (not very much dressing or bacon flavor (on menu described as a traditional recipe with bacon).
When we walked in, Grandpoo noticed an article posted on the wall about their Fried Pies, he heard they were really good here. Ogre ordered it and thought the Fried Cherry Pie was good and that he particularly LIKED the deep-fried crust. Grandpoo tried it and thought it tasted like it was fried in rancid grease. I didn’t try it so I don’t know who was right. Grandpoo ordered the Peach Cobbler, I know that he said it was very “cinnamon-y” and that he left quite a bit of it behind, so I don’t think it was spectacular. I ordered the Rootbeer Float (IBC root beer and Blue Bell Vanilla ice cream so I’m sure you can imagine how it tastes). No complaints from me or Mina. And, Benji? He devoured the ice cream completely and asked for “mo mo, yeah.”
It’s been awhile since we’ve had such poor service. From beginning to end, it was bad and, really, it just kept getting worse. There was the fiasco with the seating, initially. That was only rectified by good timing on the departure of another table. Our waitress was slow to get our dinner order and checked on us only once. We had to flag her down for drink refills. She did not ONCE clear a dish off the table (including the appetizer dishes, which I even piled for her) until we were done with dinner and when she came to do that, only cleared off half the dishes. And it’s not that she was so inattentive, she gave off a pretty bad attitude and was a little snippy at times.
And, the icing on the cake, not bringing back a glass for Mina. That about sealed it for me with the poor service. Service 1 star, at best.
They have a very nice kids menu that comes with the above entrees and one vegetable. They have a nice variety of veggies to choose from also, which is great for the pickier kids. They don’t have any crayons or paper placemats, so bring your own entertainment! Overall, average kid-friendliness.
The toal: $70.58 (3 adults)
Dallas Observer “BEST OF” 2008: Best BBQ: check out the first comment on their site, hahaha!
I would have given this place 3 stars based on the fact that food was overall average and my dish was excellent. It has average kid friendliness. However, the poor service would have made it a barely 3 stars. Ogre and Grandpoo thought it should get 2 stars. Ogre cites that it is average food (and a lot of it was below average -particularly the side/vegetable dishes), average kid friendliness, and very, very poor service. I could see his point, so I agreed and gave it 2 stars.
The title was also his idea. I think it’s a little harsh myself. This place is in no way awful. I think it’s decent little BBQ joint. Ogre says he would go if someone suggested this restaurant as place to eat, but would never bring it up as a suggestion. I’d go and since, in my opinion, there aren’t too many good BBQ places in Dallas, I’d probably suggest it every once in awhile if it ever came up (and Ogre wasn’t around!)
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!