As kids get older it’s easier to satisfy everyone instead of the old ritual…”Aw, I don’t like that place” or “I’ll go but I’m not eating anything”. Picky, picky. Where did they learn that? Oh wait, I’m picky….oops.
We had some things to do in Houston yesterday afternoon, then we were going to meet up with some friends for dinner. I was left in charge of where to go. Since it didn’t really matter to me, I asked my boys. They both suggested Doneraki’s Mexican Restaurant.
The original Doneraki’s was founded in Houston’s Northside Barrio in 1973 by the Rodriguez Brothers (Cesar, Jorge y Victor) to serve the authentic Mexican Food using only fresh and natural products.
Now that was in 1973, lots have changed since then. I normally do not patronize franchise restaurants and I look at Doneraki’s as a local franchise serving the Houston area. It’s been a year since I’ve eaten here, so it was good to go back and see if anything has changed. Their web site doesn’t list it but there is a location in Champion Forest off of FM1960 West, on the North side of Houston. Nestled on the back side of a strip center.
We arrived about 5:30pm and noticed we were only the second group to walk in. It didn’t take long until the place was full shortly after. No Mariachi band was playing on this Friday evening. I found that odd. Usually there is some sort of band playing on the weekends. It was fine with me because I prefer to talk during dinner instead of shout!
The service has always been great. They have a very attentive staff, so you don’t have to wait long. As the kids started off with their Dr. Pepper’s and the adults ordered margarita’s on the rocks with the house tequila. Usually the ‘ritas are made strong but this time around, either they were running out or the bartender was being cheap. I usually order with Patron Silver but since I was driving, I stayed with the cheap stuff and only one for the evening. The last thing I need is to get pulled over by Houston’s finest and then go into an endless ramble because that is what Patron Silver does. It’s the truth serum of tequila! “Yes officer, I was speeding. Yes officer I was trying to salom through the cute little white stripes you painted on the ground. Hey, your badge is shiny!” Okay…you get the point…
Ordering at Doneraki’s is relatively simple. We only had one thing on our minds. Fajitas. My oldest son prefers beef so we ordered a combo of beef and chicken. A table next to us ordered the shrimp fajitas and I should have added that. It really had a nice presentation to them.
I ordered the fajita combo for 4 people at $41.95. I think is a little pricey for this type of place. For one person it’s $11.95 so you do save a few dollars. What $7? The staff brought out everything to the table. As soon as he sat the hot platter down I knew for the price, it was too high. Here’s why I say that. The fajita meat was cut too thick. It should have been sliced thin so it would look like you got your money’s worth. Two strips of chicken is all you needed, the tortilla’s seem smaller this time, and a bit on the dry side. Since the boys do not eat all the extras the staff brings out, I always decline. This isn’t a slap in the face, but I do not see the point of wasting food.
I wasn’t really disappointed with our dining experience because it was more about having fun, conversing with friends and having a good time. I will probably go back, but I may try another location.
Or better yet…continue my own quest in the kitchen.