Fort Worth Date Night: The grass is always greener on the other side (FW Business Press)

October 08, 2009

We should all be familiar with old proverb, “The grass is always greener on the other side.” This means that while we may love what we have, because we already have it, someone else’s “whatever” is more appealing. Let me clarify this in culinary terms.

Have you ever been to McDonald’s and just ordered a burger? However, your friend ordered a burger and fries. Being the kind friend, he or she offers you a fry or two. “Wow!” comes to mind as this may be the best fry you’ve ever eaten. Is it really the best fry? Or, are they that good because you didn’t order any and should have?

Fort Worth has been abuzz lately about Paco & John Mexican Diner (1116 8th Ave, Fort Worth). So abuzzed that I met an old friend there recently to see what all the fuss was about. Based on the wait at lunch during the week, apparently Fort Worth is in the know.

My problem with food is that once I start thinking about it, I’m ready to eat right there; right now. This is why Mexican food restaurants are genius. Immediately upon sitting down, a very nice person, perhaps an angel from heaven, delivers chips and salsa. This is definitely a selling point in my decision-making when it comes to a dining locale. Paco & John’s did not disappoint in the “chip” department.

Ordering was fun. Lots of great choices. Breakfast foods or lunch foods? And, the torta (Mexican sandwich) selection was fairly extensive. More importantly, what I saw being brought out to the tables was Ginormous! Let’s just hope that quality trumped quantity.

So, I went with the chicken flautas and mi amigo went with the Cuban Press. What’s a Cuban Press you might ask. It’s a sandwich on the torta bread that is, according to Paco & John’s menu, “Ham, roasted pork loin, cheese, pickles, heated.” Our first thought when the Cuban Press was sat so eloquently in front of him, was, “Holy Smokes! That thing is huge!” He immediately began cutting into it and offered me up some of the goods.

Based on the ingredients, this would not be a sandwich I would normally order. However, after eating my first bite, what happened next might be described as a “religious experience.” Harps were playing, angels were singing…I believe I even saw a strong, white light summoning me.

Did I have lunch envy? Absolutely! However, I do look forward to returning to check out much of their other offerings, from the great breakfasts to the higher-end entrees at dinner. Just make sure if you invite me, be fully prepared to share. As I have learned, the grass is often greener on the other side of the table.

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