Date: Saturday 11/1/08, 5:00 PM
Having eaten at Casa Rio through the years and receiving excellent food, I am disappointed at their current state of operation. My wife and I were seated by the river and ordered a Taco Salad for her and a Chili Relleno (CR) for me. The CR was advertized to be deep fried. It wasn’t. It was covered with cheese and broiled enough to melt the cheese. The meat inside was lukewarm and not too tasty. Thinking it was just a fluke and had been sitting around; I had it replaced with a “fresh” one. It had a bit more cheese and melted more but was otherwise the same. Not in the mood for cold Mexican food, I questioned the waitress if they had anything hot. She recommended Fajitas so I accepted thinking it would be hard to mess them up since they are customarily served on a sizzling hot metal plate. Wrong again! The Fajitas came on a cold glass plate with the similar lukewarm meat and vegetables. The waitress, gun shy by now, deposited the plate and promptly disappeared.
My wife’s experience was no better. She generally does not complain about bad food, leaving that to me. However, the meat was the same lukewarm fajita meat I had with my order and the greens had the flavor of bagged lettuce. She knows the flavor well and will not use it for the family. She did not like it a bit. In addition, it was not served with the customary sauces and it took us four tries to get some to the table. Only after my Fajitas arrived and she was half way through her Taco Salad, did her sauce arrive
On the positive side, they still have a great, albeit expensive, Margarita Grande. And to their credit when I spilled a portion of it, they replaced it free of charge without us asking. The waitress tried to be accommodating with our meals but could only serve what was prepared.
All in all it was a bad experience in light of the excellent food we have received there in the past. Any restaurant can have a bad dish or a bad day and I usually overlook these. However, when they obviously keep food around in warmers and serve it as fresh, this is policy. It is how food is served at sporting events. I suppose with the captive audience on the River Walk they feel they can abandon their long standing traditions, comfortably rest on their laurels and become another tourist trap free from the rigors of turning out good hot fresh food consistently. I hope they turn around. It used to be a good place.