Thursday, February 25, 2010

Chevys Fresh Mex

The Location: Chevys Fresh Mex, multiple local locations

The Taco: 3 taco combo.  One Original Salsa Chicken, One slow-roasted Carnitas, One Picadillo Beef served with beans, rice and sweet corn tamalito.

The Price: About $12

The Verdict: What is there to say about Chevys?  We've been there a number of times, but as I recall it has been a few years since we last tried them out.  It's a major national chain, and as such has to cater to the broadest possible tastes.  Unfortunately, that means that the food is not particularly authentic.

Getting straight to the details: the meal was delivered luke-warm.  Not acceptable at a large, well-established restaurant like this.  The beef taco contained some ground beef which lacked any interesting flavor.  It tasted like something I could make at home in 10 minutes with powdered taco seasoning.

The chicken taco was slightly better, but it was too dry.  I had to dump some salsa on just to liven it up a bit.  I don't know where they get the name "Salsa Chicken" because the taco did not seem to have any salsa anywhere within.

The carnitas had a strange smokey, almost BBQ-like flavor.  Very different from what I would traditionally expect from carnitas.  With some complementary side dishes and a tweak to the seasoning it could potentially be sold as an acceptable bbq taco, but, as is, it was out of place at Chevys.

Conclusions: The simple taco should be the cornerstone of any mexican restaurant, especially one with years of experience and tens of thousands of customers a year.  Somehow, Chevys managed to disappoint three separate ways on this trip.

The Rating: ★★ (out of 5)

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