The one at Ontario Mills in Ontario, CA. Huge place, and not near as noisy as I was expecting. (a plus) Not as crowded as I expected either. (another plus, as I’m a misanthrope)
Nice oaky/brassy decor with great light fixtures. There was even a guy to open the door for us, coming and going. I sure hope he wasn’t expecting a tip.
ALERT! ALERT! White cloth napkin warning!
The specialty drink menu looked like the 213 phone book, but alas, those days are behind me, so I settled for Coke rocks.
And it did.
Our waiter (Hello, my name is Kevin and I’ll be your server today) was great. Too bad my sandwich wasn’t, but anyway…
The chicken tortilla soup was so good I want to bathe in it and drink the bathwater. I’ll definitely be attempting to recreate that in my home kitchen someday soon.
Nothing on the menu inspired me all that much, as I wasn’t in the mood for ribs or burgers, so I finally selected some kind of grilled panini sandwich with peppercorn roast beef, havarti, arugula, and red onions along with a dipping bowlette of peppercorn au jus concoction.
When the sandwich came it had obviously been sitting on the pick up shelf for quite awhile, as it was cold and the havarti peeking out from the bread had solidified. The arugula had mysteriously morphed into sliced raw tomatoes, an item I abhor on a sandwich. The bread had been spread with a mayo looking ranch tasting spread. It’s probably a good idea at this point to mention how much I despise ranch.
Oh how I despise it. Damn but I wish they’d have mentioned that little tidbit in the menu description.
After one bite I decided I don’t like havarti cheese. The rare roast beef slices were sure good, although darned if I didn’t forget to pack my portable scanning electron microscope, which would have aided me greatly in seeing the miniscule amount of beef they so lovingly didn’t slather the sandwich with.
The dipping sauce was a salty, somewhat thickish blend of pepper, water, and packaged beef "au jus" powder. It helped to hide the flavor of the sandwich, so I fell in love with the stuff. In fact, I’d have gladly traded the sandwich for a big steaming bowl of the dip.
The fries were… fries. Typical bag ‘o Sysco frozen product. Good, but not great. And not hot.
I don’t play pool or bar games, so I can’t see myself returning to Dave and Buster’s. If I ever decide to slide back into old habits (getting drunk and playing pool) I’ll probably return. It’s really a nice place inside, and the service was impeccable.
But a guy can’t eat service.