Since we moved, we have been trying out different restaurants in our new area. We've gone to Red Robin (thumbs up), a Vegas-style buffet (thumbs up), and an Asian fast food place that is always crowded and the portions are huge (thumbs up). Last night was dh's turn to pick where to eat, and he chose an Asian buffet. Ahem.
I really like buffets. I really like Asian food. But this place, not so much.
To begin with, the food choices were very limited. And, to be fair, maybe we didn't hit it at the best time. We went in around 4:30pm so maybe they were in between lunch and dinner. I don't know. A lot of the food trays were empty or picked over. The food that was still out looked old. I was totally grossed out. But I ate a little, and it was not good.
I think it was the appearance of the food that was the first turn-off. The spoon in the tartar sauce had obviously been sitting there all day. There was a crust of sauce about two inches up the handle that had yellowed and hardened. The color difference between the tartar sauce in the pot and the sauce on the spoon was glaring, yellow vs. white. I still took some (I know! I know! Why?!) and ate it with the fried fish that looked good, but was rubbery and soft. Strike one.
I had been craving a big salad all day, so going to this buffet, I had high hopes to satisfy that craving. Uh, no. The salad bar was spare. Spare. Like, there was lettuce and tomatoes and cheese and cucumbers, and that's about it. I think there were raisins and mushrooms, too, but, really? No sunflower seeds? No three-bean salad? No boiled eggs chopped up? Nope. None of it. I took some lettuce, cucumbers, and croutons. I was trying to make the best of it. I headed to the dressing. Had I not learned my lesson from tartar sauce? Apparently not. The best-looking dressing, meaning the least separated, yellowed, glop was blue cheese. The ranch was absolutely yellow and I was not going to take a chance. I don't like blue cheese too much, but, sigh, I needed something on my salad! Strike two.
I took my meager salad back to the table and sat down. The kids were munching away on french fries and Jell-o. DH was raving about the spicy chicken, which was chicken, vegetables, and tons of jalapenos. I wanted to enjoy my food. I really did. I wanted to eat my salad with a smile. I picked up my fork and flipped some the lettuce around on my plate to mix the dressing. Thank God I did that. On the back of one of the lettuce leaves there was a glop of brown goo. It looked like brown pudding. I told myself it was probably chocolate pudding.
I glanced over at the salad bar. The chocolate pudding was on the other side of the glass divider, totally separated at the other end of the bar from where the lettuce was sitting. I wanted to believe it was pudding, but in reality, I knew it wasn't. It was most likely poop.
I put my fork down. That was it for me! I was totally grossed out! Was that poop on my lettuce?! How did it get there?! Was it from some worm or bug living in the salad? Don't know, don't care. I pushed my plate to the side and thankfully the waiter picked it up. I didn't tell the kids or dh because I didn't want everyone to freak out. (is that right or wrong?) Everyone else seemed to be enjoying their food. This always happens to me!
Anyway, I wanted to top off my experience with something sweet, something safe. I spotted a tray of cream puffs that looked like they might have been from Costco. Safe, right? Wrong. After a disappointing realization that there was no coffee bar, I collected two cream puffs and sat down. I bit one and it tasted like the smell inside a refrigerator that's held Chinese food leftovers too long. Blech.
Long story short, there is no way I will ever eat there again. Thumbs down, way down. I was so shocked when we were paying the bill and my dh told the cashier, probably the manager, that the food was "really good". What the? I ate a bowl of cereal at home. Boo.