Tag Archives: chicken tenders

GOTTA GET DOWN ON FRIDAY (Hardees … again)

22 Jun

GOTTA GET DOWN ON FRIDAY #3

I had eaten a wrap and a lot of fries at this point. Sue me, there were a lot of people around and I feel like a fucking idiot taking a picture of my food (rightly so).

Lord LiquorLunch does two BK reviews and I’m doing my second Hardees review? Sign of the times, I guess. Of those two establishments, I have to give Hardees the nod if only for their buffalo chicken tenders. That single menu item almost made me believe in God until I realized how dumb of a conclusion that was to jump to. Full disclosure: I have a freakish-bordering-on-fetish love of Frank’s Hot Sauce.

As much as I like Hardees buffalo chicken tenders, the two times I tried their regular tenders, I hated the crap out of them. They were dry, tasteless, and the breading just sloughed off and made me hate myself even more than I normally do when I’m eating Hardees cuisine.

Therefore when I redeemed my $2.99 coupon for a small combo of two chicken tender wraps, small fry and small drink, I was expecting to despise the wraps. Well, the whole meal actually because I don’t generally like Hardees fries. However, this shit was really good and a friggin steal at $3.20 after tax. Even better, the cashier mucked up my order and marked it as to-go instead of eat-in even though I told her twice. Better, you ask? Well, she gave me some free apple pie thing as an apology, ya see.

Das Wrapenator

The chicken was well-cooked and well-breaded, very tasty. Ranch. Enough said there; ranch is almost always good. The cheese was good and the lettuce served its purpose (whatever that might be). The tortilla was inoffensive. Overall, I really liked these wraps.

Fries

I usually hate Hardees fries but these were pretty good. Reminded me of a cross between Wendy’s new fries and McDonalds fries. Yet worse than both. They were still pretty good, though.

MYSTERY APPLE THING CONTENDER

I didn’t order this so I assume the cashier felt bad about making me sit around for a very long time because she forgot my order was eat-in. It was a pretty shitty ‘dessert.’ I don’t know what they charge for these things but I think you can get them at gas stations for fifty cents or less. Actually this was definitely worse than the ones at the gas station. It wasn’t bad or anything but it was just fairly dumb. If you’re gonna copy McDonalds (why, Jesus, why?), don’t make your version way, way worse and not even hot to boot. That’s dumb!

Conclusion

For $2.99, this meal was worth the public shame of taking a coupon out of my wallet and using it. Now to the heart of the matter: I want everything in a fucking flour tortilla. I love flour tortillas. You could dump out a diaper of baby poop into a tortilla, roll it up, and I’d pay you good money to ingest it. Am I forsaking the Earl of Sandwich? No, of course not. But sometimes you don’t want a lot of dumb bread everywhere. Bread is so dumb.

Also I must mention that Hardees is the absolute worst about mixing up to-go and eat-in. What’s worse is that some (all?) Hardees give out plastic number cards for eat-in, so they can pretend to be a semi-full service restaurant. At least at other fast food places, you are gonna be mulling around the counter regardless when your number is called.

At Hardees you just sit at a table in the back like some dumb fucking asshole in the waiting room of his doctor’s office having arrived a day early: I hope you have a smart phone to goof off on or a booth concealed enough to jerk off in because otherwise you are not gonna have a good time sitting around waiting for the world to end.

Final Thoughts For Real

I must patent an interrupt device that makes the consumer punch in eat-in or to-go. Actually I guess soon enough the whole ordering process is gonna be through a user-input touch screen. Like they had at the White Castle I went to in Manhattan some months back. Which still fucked my order up, by the way.

Characters Quarters

13 Nov

Rating: 5 Fingers

Worth every myocardial infarction

I’ve been to this joint before. My first visit was a chance encounter; I was meeting a friend in Raleigh and this was a half way point. The thing that brought me back was a monstrosity called “The Characters Grilled Cheese Burger.” The main draw of this burger being, if you hadn’t already guessed, they exchange two grilled cheese sandwiches in place of the standard kaiser roll buns. It’s something I don’t treat myself to often, so when I do I get very excited about it. When my buddy decided to go to a hockey game my immediate reaction was to sing “Characters Quarters” over and over in my most childish voice. They have $6 pitchers of domestics on Sundays so my demands were met with minimal resistance. So over the river and through the woods, to the artery clogging restaurant we go…

One of the first things you generally notice are all the waitresses dressed up as characters, but since it was Sunday the uniform was football jerseys and booty shorts. The waitress came over and took our drink order, and I offered up our food orders as well. I ordered the Characters Grilled Cheese Burger while my friend got the Crispy Chicken Tenders. The waitress leaves, returns with beer, leaves, and after a reasonable amount of time returns with our food.

And this is is where the review will take a nosedive.

I’m saying the waitress returned with our food, but what  I mean is she returned with some food. I took one glance at the burger and noticed it was without the grilled cheese buns. I pointed this out and the waitress whisked it away to presumably sort out the issue. When she returned she informed me that there are two “Characters Burgers” and she thought I wanted the other one. She also proceeded to explain that I need to specify when I’m ordering to avoid confusion. And then apologized for it being her fault. Which sent me into full on asshole mode. Before she lectured me on how to order, I was freaking out to my friend. I was wondering if I ordered wrong (I didn’t) and since I have worked in restaurants I know how awful bosses can be about mistakes so I genuinely felt for her. After the lecture, I was beyond pissed. She was right, there are indeed two different burgers; the “Character Burger” and the “Character Grilled Cheese Burger.” Notice the difference in length, and the fact that only one has the word cheese in it’s title. So either I

  • Mistakenly ordered the Characters Cheese Burger, in which case she should have checked that I meant one or the other since they are so close in name and would technically not be the menu name of either (my friend verified I ordered correctly so this isn’t the case)
  • Ordered correctly and the waitress thought/mis-wrote Characters Burger or didn’t know that they were separate menu items, in which case the mistake was hers and my ordering had nothing to do with why I didn’t get my correct burger
  • Ordered correctly and the waitress just wasn’t listening or was otherwise distracted
None of this would have been a problem if the waitress hadn’t spent 5 minutes laying blame at my feet followed by a cover-up “but it was my fault” at the end. I’m pissed but I munch on my friend’s chicken tenders while I’m waiting. They appear to be hand made and man are they tasty. I forgot to get a picture, but think Hardees Chicken Tenders, except not shitty. I get my food shortly after and damn does it look good.

The burger is every bit of awesome that it appears to be. The grilled cheese buns are cooked to buttery perfection, the beef is medium, the fries crispy, and the pickle…… pickley. I think the fries were frozen: I don’t care. I actually prefer mediocre frozen fries to mediocre fresh fries. Shows my superior taste level and refined palate. I decided I was in more of a ranch mood than ketchup for fry dipping purposes, so I wait for our waitress to come back over for the customary “How is everything?” check up. And wait. And wait. I sat and waited for at least 15 minutes before I was able to flag her down to request my ranch. What the fuck?! Am I being punished for her mess up of my order?! She had officially been upgraded to Dumb Bitch. Does she not realize that her tip is based on her customer service? Or is she willing to sacrifice her tip to defend her pride? Whatever the reason for my being grounded from service, I was over it. Once I got my ranch (and another pitcher of beer) I just wanted to chow down and leave. The ranch was amazing, identical to what I had previously at J. Michael’s.

We paid our tab; stupidly tipped the waitress 20% and left. I could lie and try to make a point by saying they’ve lost a customer for life and I’ll use this blog that no one reads as the ultimate vengeance, but it’s just not true. I’ve worked in food service to know everyone and every place have off nights. The food is really greasy and delicious, and I’ll blame this on bad luck. Please don’t make a fool of me for it CQ. I am forced to rate this place 5 fingers though, because that’s how many it would have taken to make a fist and punch that stupid waitress in the face.

Characters Quarters on Urbanspoon

J. Michael’s Philly Deli

11 Nov

Rating: 1 Ranch

This place has a been a staple birthday dinner of my youngest brother for as long as I can remember. Every year we trek out to Porters Neck because for some reason family tradition dictates we must go to the furthest one. Don’t ask me why; it’s free food and I’m down. This also makes reviewing this place by “food” standards as difficult as rating Spaghetti-os by pasta standards. If you’ve grown up eating it, it tastes as it should. You like it. Does that make it good? Probably not. But after much debate I decided to attempt a review.

The menu is mostly apps, burgers, and subs, but the big thing are their phillys. Many a Wilmingtonian swears by them and hey, I’m not here to judge them. The natives, I mean. Of course these phillys will be judged. The ordering around the table is pretty much the same with different adds/subtracts on the phillys. The waitress takes our drink orders and since they have my favorite craft microbrew in bottle I get that (PBR).  I barely glanced at the menu since I’ve been ordering this shit fo years, son! (sorry that coffee martini is getting to me) I order the mozz sticks, a 2 piece chicken tender, and a philly hoagie with mayo. I notice while the food is being prepared that there’s some weird basket of pickle spears on the table.  Yes, for a second review, there are pickles. I like pickles, but they are just pickles so who cares? Im not even sure if they were ordered or brought out as some pre-app.

available for purchase at your local costco

Ok first up are the chicken tenders. They are almost certainly the frozen ones you’ve had in a million other bars/diners/cafes and taste like chicken and pepper. Not to worry, I ordered the Ranch as the dipping sauce. J. Michael’s has some of the best Ranch ever. In the history of this one post. Its slightly watery and possibly the home-made kind. Don’t care what magic creates it I just know I love it. The Ranch makes the tenders taste like Ranch so I approve. I was slightly worried when they brought the food out; my tenders had fries with them. Which is indicative of a kids meal, not a 2 piecer. The waitress informed me the cooks had messed up and the fires were no charge. Huzzah! Actually I didn’t really care for their fries but free food is good food as I just started saying so pretty cool of them. Fries were big wedges that were once again the average frozen variety.

Onto the mozz sticks which have been a favorite for years. The sticks are breaded with actual bread crumbs. I appreciate this. At least it wasn’t those weird floured farmrich walmart ones, so if they are frozen they’re the better kind. The marinara sauce has always been my favorite part of getting the sticks but this time it wasn’t as great. It seemed thicker and a little off tasting, it may have been the bottom of the bucket or the fact I was trying to review it. I’m going to say they make this in-house since I haven’t ever tasted another sauce that came close. It’s a bit more vinegary than your normal marinara and works well with the fried greasy sweetness of mozz sticks. I ended up dosing those in ranch after a few bites with the sauce though; man the Ranch makes everything awesome.

I ordered my philly hoagie style (lettuce and tomato) and yes I know that’s not traditional. Don’t care, that’s how I like it. My brother got the large while I got the small. After we had taken a few bites he grinned at me and stated “This isn’t a race. But if it was, I’d be winning.” Challenge accepted. Heated scromming occurred and I can’t say I tasted most of my philly. What I did taste was (also) frozen thin slices of steak with some tasteless cheese. It had soft bread and I have to say I’m a fan of a crustier bread with subs especially when it’s a hot messy one that needs something more substantial to hold it in. The point of this story is I won with a few of his bites to spare. Upon my glorious victory dance, my brother then asked me with an even larger grin “What’s wrong with you? I told you it wasn’t a race”

I come from a family of trolls.

This “deli” is a grilled/fried frozen food supplier. And I’m ok with that. It tastes exactly how I remember and its not claiming to be a 4 star affair. The phillys are pretty good if you’re judging from that stand point, and most drunks I know would claim the food delicious after a few beers. I think this place would go down easier if it was more of a bar with decent munchies than an actual restaurant, but either way I was satisfied. I am going to judge it based on how many of the Ranch you should order with each item. And 1 is not too shabby.

J Michael's Philly Deli on Urbanspoon