Lunch with Louie at La Playa Azul
Santa Barbara food reviews with Louie the pessimist food critic
Feb 10, 7:43 PM (PT)
It was another stunningly beautiful day in Santa Barbara. The skies so intensely blue, a gentle breeze caresses my face as beautiful ladies walk by on their way to lunch. A few ugly men walk by also, but we don’t care. Our mission is to have lunch, but it has to be outside. Ed suggested un poco de comida Mexicana en el patio de La Playa Azul on Santa Barbara St.
Of course the patio was almost full but inside not a soul could be found. A young lady walked us to our patio table and left. Two gentlemen in business suits following us got the last table next to us, they also got utensils, water, and menus. We got nada. I asked if the indifference had to do with the attire, maybe ties are part of the preferential treatment. Ed smiled, maybe so. Actually, all the men were wearing ties. What’s up with that? Well, instead of Senorita hostess we got busboy el groucho.
Our waiter came and apparently he also had some quarrels with life in general because he shared some of the grouchiness of the busboy. As a matter of fact now that I recall the entire experience, it seems that the entire staff was not very happy that afternoon. Now let me see, does the help eat before the lunch business starts? Maybe so, and there lies the answer why everybody is mad at the world. I sure was a little less happy after I ate.
We ordered 2 enchiladas and a tostada. 2 enchiladas a la carte for $8.00 or 1 enchilada with rice $8.00. A regular tostada costs $11.25. The waiter told me I had the option of a small tostada because the regular one was gigantico; fine, lets have a small tostada - it was also gigantic and the price was $10.50 - a gigantic savings of 75 cents. Something doesn’t click here.
So, 2 enchiladas a la carte and a small tostada. We tried to eat some chips and salsa but the chips were like cardboard and the salsa was watery and almost tasteless.
It took our waiter a total of 90 seconds to bring our food. We were amazed. I know lunch has a time factor but nobody wants to go back to work that quickly. And, anyway is 90 seconds enough time to prepare 2 enchiladas and a tostada? No. Not unless they were already made and ready to go. The tostada was generic and with a total lack of imagination in its presentation. Just pile everything up and good luck. The enchiladas were plain and simply bad. The filling almost all dark chicken meat and when we opened it up, it was staring at us. It was alive. That’s no good. The tortilla that surrounded this concoction had seen its better days, it was soggy and falling apart. Nice eh?
Do you believe in conspiracies? I sometimes wonder. You watch the tele and the antacid and gastrointestinal medication ads have taken over the airwaves. Do you think that some food makers and restaurants are getting kickbacks from the giant medical companies? Accumulate points by serving the worst food that you can accomplish? The rewards will come.
We were a little upset this time and so were our tummies. I skipped the movies and went home for my triple mouth and taste cleansing. First you waterpick your mouth until your gums actually start verbally complaining; followed by a 20 minute brushing of teeth and tongue and as a grande finale gargle with Listerine for 12 consecutive minutes. Four Tums and one Prilosec should take care of the internal part of your body. Oh, the check came accompanied by 2 candies. That’s right, even the candies were forgettable.
But the sky was so blue today. And the girls were oh so pretty with that first summer look in their eyes.
“for the record, my tummy was fine, however it did take a while for my taste buds to recover”
Edhat reader comments:
“My family and I have eaten at Playa Azul many, many times over the past several years and find the service excellent and the food above average, but could be better. Their Spanish/Mexican rice is consistently excellent.”
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