Mexican Made Easy

Posted: 06/08/2011 in Uncategorized

We have a bit of a love hate relationship with Chiquito’s on the Purley Way, a couple of years ago we had a nightmare meal there that took nearly three hours and we swore them off for good.

But becoming parents changed that for us a couple of months back when we were tempted back by their childrens menu and the fact that they had free tables when we had to wait for a table elsewhere.

What a difference we thought, great food, great service, well priced, we’ll come again.

And so a couple of months later we gave them another shot, had another great meal, Waiters stopping regularly to check up on us, managers playing with Monkey Boy, and a bill of less than £50.

So we come round to attempt number three.

Firstly they forgot to bring over our high chair, annoying but easily done and quickly rectified.

Food and drinks ordered, we had to ask for the free Tortilla chips which Monkey boy loves and half of them were undercooked and like chewing rubber.

Starters arrived, all still going fairly smoothly, about half way through our starters the waitress comes over and says our mains are ready and would we like them now. But we haven’t finished our starters we quip, I know but I thought you’d be quicker, I can always keep them on hold she says, but then they’ll be cold we say, yes she says.

Still by this stage we’ve had our starters for four minutes rather than two and we’re nearly through them so tell her to bring them out even though we’re less than impressed. My Chilli Dog was a little bready but fine. But Mrs Bunny Chows Enchilada’s had obviously been ready since sometime before the starters. They were also ridiculous, somewhere between the thickness of a pen an a thin cigar, I couldn’t have got my baby finger in one never mind the described chilli con queso, ancho-chilli-tomato sauce and spiced chicken. The bed of rice these two cigars were sitting on had also been dried out to the point where it had all stuck together and formed a crispy crust.

By now even less than impressed we began the process of trying to track down anyone resembling a manager but even a member of the waiting team would have been useful, after about fifteen minutes (admittedly interupted by having to change Monkey Boy’s Nappy) we managed to attract the attention of a Manager looking lady who promissed to be right with us. Again I have to confess she was carrying stuff at the time so instant service from her wasn’t to be necesarily expected.

About ten further minutes later a separate manager arrived with our original waitress in tow. I by this stage had almost finished my main while Mrs Bunny Chow had been unable to even start hers. She queried the abomination in front of her whilst I held my own council for fear of being unecesarilly rude. He made some vague attempts to justify the shocking quality of the dish in front of us but did agree relatively quickly that because this much was what their Enchilada’s are supposed to be like. Mrs Bunny Chow could order something else from the menu.

She then ordered something called a Border Wrap assuming that as it was essentially a posh sandwich it would arrive relatively quickly and us having eaten our mains separately would not have been the end of the world.

You will note that by this stage I’ve made no mention of anyone having cleared any plates or us ordering more drinks, this is because we were not offered the opportunity to order more drinks and no one had cleared the plates from our starters or mains.

Mrs Bunny Chow’s special sandwich took a further thirty plus minutes to arrive whilst I ammused myself by creating elaborate piles of crockery and empty glasses and origami piramids to sit on top of these items even making loud clattering noises when one of these piles collapsed. Still they kept me ammused while we waited so probably a good thing no one bothered to take them away from me.

At one point Ms Surly our ever helpful and attentive waitress indicated that Mrs Bunny Chows main course would be with her in two minutes, it took a further fifteen from that point but when it did eventually arrive she was pleasantly surprised that it was actually very nice and didn’t appear to taste of chefs bogeys either.

I continued to amuse myself with my crockery stacking while she ate while Monkey Boy threw bits of bread and sausage about the place.

When Mrs Bunny Chow finnished her meal I immediately added her crockery to my pile which was great fun as things were even more precarious than before I had managed to collapse my stack. This kept me quiet whilst Mrs Bunny Chow tried to track down a member of waiting staff to order the dessert from the set menu we had ordered Monkey Boy’s meal from. He didn’t need or want the dessert  of course but by this stage we had been there for over two hours and I was getting tired and fractious and Mrs Bunny Chow thought the best way of shutting me up was probably to feed me something sugary meant for my son.

So after eventually managing to request the Childrens Warm Chocolate Brownie, I continued to play with my elaborate stack of crockery and empty glasses whilst quietly bemoaning my thirst. Mrs Bunny Chow muttered sweet loving threats along the nature of it’s ok Mr Bunny Chow but if you get out of that seat and go and drag the manageress over by her hair I will divorce you. Believing every word of it I mumbled quietly for myself for the remaining ten minutes before Ms Surly (remember her, I’d nearly forgotten) returned to inform us that they had run out of Chocolate Brownies but she could go and check in the freezer (why she hadn’t done that before she came out I don’t know) but we could order something else if we preferred.

Begining to get a wind up I at this point said as politely and sweetly as I could muster, that no we would not be requiring a dessert any longer but would like very much to be brought a bill appropriate to the service and meal we had just had. I would have continued further explaining the levels of distaste I had for Ms Surly and the meal they had just served but Mrs Bunny Chow fixed me with a glare that would have killed a lesser man than I so I backed down and wen’t back to playing with my crockery and empty glasses.

Ms Surly tottered off to chat with the manager and then clean some tables or apply some make up or something else that did not consist of bringing our bill before after a further fifteen minutes and now seven minutes shy three hours of having entered the establishment. Ms Surly and the original Mr Manager two came over with the bill having deigned to lop off twenty percent in advance.

Left to my own devices I would have demanded more but again Mrs Bunny Chow fixed me with that special Stare of hers.

I don’t know how many of you dear readers have small children of for that matter childish husbands but taking three hours over a mediocre meal on a school night is not a luxury we are often afforded. To have been given a special pile of crockery and glasses of varying shapes and sizes to play with too, I could not have been more delighted.

I cannot wait for our next adventure at Chiquito’s.


Mr Bunny Chow

  1. An early retraction.

    Mrs Bunny Chow has pointed out that despite my agony we were there for closer to two hours than three.

    Was still a nightmare though.


    Mr Bunny Chow

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