Thursday, January 14, 2010

Booster Club vs. Bad Service


So how do you get a little help for the athletics boosters in a tough economy... seek funds and prizes from local businesses. Before I go into my story, let me just say how awesome Lowes Home Improvements has been to Troutman and Iredell Schools. They have supplied, funded and supported several projects at the local schools. Not little stuff, tens of thousands of dollars in support - repeatedly. AWESOME!!! Thanks.

So where was I? Oh yeah Texas. Not the state, not the Roadhouse. Texas Steakhouse (stuck back behind the hotels and Golden Corral area off 150 at Exit 36). So our little student athlete gets a coupon for being a great student, then a mystery value gift card for her athletics. The long and short - we took the bait and got caught in the hook.

We were greeted immediately (arriving there around 6:40pm). The parking was about half full, and so was the restaurant. There was a large staff working, so there did not appear to be any rushing around. That will come up later. We get seated, greeted and place our drink orders; get the appetizer offer (declined) and looked at the menu. All of their low priced options from several months ago are gone. Sandwiches are in the $7.99/8.99 area, but the under $10 steaks are gone. Most were $14 and up.

We order healthy, so it's a pair of black and blue salads and a soup/salad combo. It's hard to go to a steak place and not get some form of steak. Here's where it starts to fall off... bread (a normal instant) was "offered". I don't really care about bread, but just get it and drop it off. Our daughter tends to have a hollow leg, so something to tide her over is always a plus. In the course of our 20+ minute wait for salads... yes, salads... my glass stayed near empty. There was NO contact from the server. She actually walked by our table on multiple occasions to see other tables, so I really did not appreciate the lack of service.

Food arrives: The soup and salad combo for our daughter was nicer than expected. Soup comes in a bread bowl. Potato and bacon soup had thick texture (like a good potato soup), and the salad was a decent size to compliment the soup. The steak on the salads was not hot, so that feeds my 20 minute question, but back on task... I order my meat medium and accept variations of temp with ease. This was rare. Chewy rare. Sirloin is not a quality enough meat in many cases to be cooked rare and not be chewy. Certainly this situation makes that case. Everything else about the salad was very good. Plenty of blue cheese, good dressing, onion frizzle things, all of the fixings.

Hey guess what? Glass still near empty half way through the salad. A person wearing an Army t-shirt came and filled our glasses, so we were happy. Hopefully she worked there. That drew me to look around and all of the servers wore white oxfords, but there were all kinds of people wearing whatever shirt and jeans that fit their mood I guess. Nothing that fit a restaurant setting. Just odd - sloppy dress leads to sloppy work.

Bill comes, overall price was fair for what we got. Total time there was over an hour - FOR SALADS. I did get a survey which will save me $5 on my next visit. What do you think, should I take the hook? Let me know. Without a coupon, it's off my list. Not sure that $5 will get me there either.

Texas Steakhouse & Saloon on Urbanspoon

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