Monday, October 28, 2013

Chimichanga’s - The Return of the Tormented Tortilla

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My Starter - jalapeno bullets

After last week’s visit to Kettering’s latest eatery, Chimichanga’s, that left Ann and I slightly underwhelmed, I was still looking forward to going there tonight with good friends Ian and Mags to see if things had ‘moved up a notch’.

When we arrived just before 7.30, the same very warm welcome awaited us, and we were quickly shown to our table for three just off-centre on the ground floor. This place is obviously doing something right, as once again, it filled-up quickly, and I’d say that it was 90% full downstairs after just one hour of us being there - on a Monday!

Things got off to a shaky start when we discovered that the menu did NOT feature any alcohol-free beer - and although there is probably not a great demand for this, we thought it should be there as an option. Our table was the same (small) size as the one that Ann and I struggled with last week - but now obviously there were three of us battling for space - which was only to get worse when the mains and all the side-accompaniments arrived. Drinks and starters arrived reasonably quickly, and unlike last week, I got a glass for my beer and my starter was piping hot - good news!

The waiting staff were very polite and smiley, but on serving the mains, they managed to confuse us all by putting the tortillas on our table and then immediately taking them away - Maybe they saw how cramped the table was and thought we needed more space!
Winking smile
The tortilla-torment continued, as when the lidded-container finally returned, it contained the SMALLEST specimens we’ve ever seen - no more than four-inches in diameter! Apparently, they had run out of the normal ones - Come on people, how can a Mexican restaurant run out of tortillas? I guess they don’t actually make them there on the premises then - and that’s a big disappointment.

Desserts came and went, and we finished off with coffee - all good. The paying-process was a lot quicker than last time, and we left at around 9.30.

Prices? We managed to get through two drinks each, starters, mains, desserts and coffee without the aid of a voucher, and the bill came to a smidge over £100. Maybe it’s me in ‘pensioner-mode’, but prices I think, are a little on the expensive side - especially for Kettering.

So, having now eaten here twice in the past seven days, would I eat there again? I certainly think the staff, in terms of their behaviour, have got it mostly right. They are very willing, positive and (tortilla delivery aside) professional. What does disappoint me is the food itself - Warm starters for me on our first visit, Warm mains for me on this visit - and the simple lack of tortillas, is just unforgiveable. Taste-wise, the food is OK/good, but not great - but maybe I’ve just been unlucky on both visits! In spite of all of this negativity, I think *I* would eat there again, but if I was taking guests, I think I’d go next door to Prezzo’s as I’ve found them to serve much better quality food.

I’m going to ring the Duty-Manager today and have a chat. Lucky Duty-Manager!
Surprised smile