30 October 2006

El Taco Loco Taqueria, Hong Kong

Name: El Taco Loco Taqueria

City: Soho, Hong Kong

Address: 9 Lower Staunton St. (just off the escalator)

Website: http://www.diningconcepts.com.hk/

Cuisine: Hong Kong style Mexican

Critique: Being in Soho, it is a bit of a pain to get to and not really worth the trouble. The beautiful Mexican decor is a delight to look at and it is tastefully decorated. The seven tables can fill up quick, but there is usually room at lunch time. Fully one half of their menu (the entire front side) is a drinks menu and their food menu is not extensive.

When we arrived for lunch on a public holiday, there was only one other person, who happened to walk in directly in front of us. She had her beer and chips before we even saw the waitress. We decided to order a large basket of tortilla chips and pico de gallo. We were sorely disappointed to find that the chips were an off-brand Doritos chip that is notorious for being slightly stale. The pico de gallo was good. A little frustrating at over $5 USD. It would have been worth it to have had regular restaurant style tortilla chips WITHOUT seasoning.

Among the four of us, we had a good variety from their menu: beef tacos, beef burritos, and chicken enchiladas. No one liked the tacos at all. The burrito was slightly better, and I am the only one who liked the enchiladas. The tacos seem to have been seasoned with chili powder instead of traditional taco seasoning. The shredded beef that they used for taco meat was extremely tough. They used the same beef in the burrito. However, the pico de gallo and the refried beans redeemed that effort. The enchiladas were served with sour cream and guacamole and all in a tin foil pie plate. While that was a bit out of the ordinary, the enchiladas was good. I would eat it again.

The tacos were fairly reasonable in price, except that no one ate them, so that makes them not worth the cost. The burritos were fairly expensive as well as the enchiladas. For 3 tacos, 2 burritos, 2 enchiladas, a basket of slightly stale off brand Doritos and four cans of soda pop, $24 USD was a little on the high side.

Comments/Recommendations: For my family, I am afraid that our visit today constituted 2 trips; our first and our last. I wouldn't mind going back again, but I don't think the family will be joining me. It is possible, that for the past month, we have been talking about going to El Chico's. When we saw this restaurant last week, it smelled good and perhaps we were expecting too much. In any case, the restaurant's motto or tag line is: "Muy authentica" (very authentic). I would propose a new motto: "Typical Asian Mexican Food".

Rating: 2 Fries

14 October 2006

Nanning Brazil BBQ, Nanning, China

Name: Nanning Brazil BBQ

City: Nanning, China

Address: 4-1 Education Street

Website: Unknown

Photo: Bob S.

Cuisine: Brazilian Barbeque

Critique: I didn't have too high hopes for this restaurant, but I must say I was pleasantly surprised. They have a decent variety of meats; many of which are within the standard "Brazilian Barbeque" genre. Some, are not. I visited on a night when regular customers were dissatisfied with the service. I thought the service was decent. I am told that they are usually much more attentive to your needs, but this night was a national holiday night and they were very busy.

They had the biggest food buffet of any Brazilian Barbeque I have been to yet, with the possible exception of one in Tai'an. They had noodles, which were very good, by the way. They had veggies, soups, and a pretty good dessert bar. I was duly impressed with the fact that they had a soda fountain and brewed coffee!

The food quality was very good. The meat was hot and tasty. The kids seem to have a good time, however, they said that they didn't really like the food. Of course, they ate a lot and enjoyed the dessert bar, so you have to consider all that.

Comments/Recommendations: This is undoubtedly one of the best places to eat in Nanning. I truly recommend your going. Being that it is the only Brazilian BBQ place in town, if you speak Mandarin, you should be able to get a taxi to it without any problems. Be sure to get the prime rib and the lemon cake. Don't forget the all you can drink pop and coffee. This is a good value for the money and a good place to eat.

Rating: 3 Fries