Archive for the tag “chicken”

Smothered Burritos Have Dropped! Qdoba’s Newest Item Hit The Spot! (@QdobaMexGrill)

First, I want to say that I had intended to write this post over a week ago.  However, work has been quite hectic and I’m just getting around to writing it.  😦

Just about a month ago, Abby, the Wisconsin marketing manager at Roaring Fork, the franchise group of local Qdoba restaurants, reached out to me via email to invite me try a new menu item – the smothered burrito.  Abby had done her homework and had read my blog.  She shared personal experiences that aligned with the “She Ordered What?” concept, and I appreciated her initiative and outreach.  I also invited her to write a guest post sometime, if she’s so inclined!  😉

Abby advised me that Qdoba was introducing the smothered burrito on December 8th, 2015.  She offered me two entrees, an order of chips and guacamole or queso, and two drinks in exchange for trying the new item.  I gladly obliged, and the loaded reward card arrived on December 5th – just in time to try the item as it “dropped” on the menu.  (or, that was the original plan!)

burrito_sign

Typically, when I go to Qdoba, I order the burrito bowl because the standard burritos are packed so full of the delicious ingredients that I end up using my fork and knife anyway. So, why not just go with the bowl?  And, I love the burrito bowl, for the record!

However, when I walked to the local Qdoba yesterday (just before noon), I knew I was going to try the smothered burrito.  I walked into an empty shop and was warmly greeted by Taliyah.  I advised her that I wanted to try the new smothered burrito, and asked her to talk to me about the newest menu item.  Taliyah politely agreed, advising me that the smothered burrito is built from a smaller tortilla than the standard burrito.  Then, it’s a similar process:  choose your rice (white or brown), your meat (chicken, beef, steak or pork), and then your sauce (tangy verde, smoky chipotle cream, or bold red chile).  The other ingredients (lettuce, salsa, sour cream, cheese, etc.) are added after the burrito is rolled.

I had asked Taliyah if I could taste two of the sauces, and she graciously offered me two small cups with a chip to taste the tangy verde (made of tomatillos and mild peppers) and the bold red chile (made with toasted red chiles, with a bit of sweetness).  I opted not to try the smoky chipotle cream (creamy, with smoky chipotle peppers) this time, but I’m sure I will soon!  Both sauces I sampled were tasty, but I decided to go with the tangy verde sauce.  In an effort to keep the integrity of the taste, or maybe because I’m boring, I chose to have the tangy verde both inside the burrito and over top of it.

From there, Curtis took over and started building my smothered burrito.  He was also incredibly polite and helpful.  These are his hands at work!  I chose white rice (after an internal battle, thinking brown rice would have been the healthier option – but I wanted the cilantro in the white rice!) and chicken – with the tangy verde, of course!  I also decided to indulge and have the sour cream and cheese on top – because why not!

Curtis assembling my smothered burrito

Curtis assembling my smothered burrito

There was a bit of confusion when I went to use the rewards card to pay, but that was worked out quickly.  Alex was working the register, and just like the other employees, he was quite polite and professional too.

So, about that smothered burrito

Smothered burrito with tangy verde sauce

Smothered burrito with tangy verde sauce

I enjoyed the extra pop of flavor the tangy verde sauce added to the burrito.  It wasn’t overpowering, but it added just enough kick with the peppers.  The cool addition of lettuce and salsa was a nice juxtaposition against the piping hot burrito.  Let’s just say that the whole meal just “hit the spot”.

I’m very grateful for the invitation to try a newer menu item at Qdoba, and I was really impressed with the service Taliyah, Curtis and Alex provided me.  This might be one of the friendliest staffs I’ve come across in recent times!  Thank you all for a delightful lunch experience (you too, Abby!).

(side note:  I appreciate that Qdoba doesn’t discriminate against folks who express themselves through body art or piercings. The employees remain professional despite not always fitting the traditional image of professional appearance.)

As for the smothered burrito, I highly recommend it.  I will add a note that my male (and generally quite hungry) colleague was a bit bummed that the smothered burrito is smaller than the traditional one and that the ingredients actually inside the smothered burrito are limited compared to the standard burrito.  As long as you know that, I think you’ll really enjoy the Qdoba smothered burrito!

If you’ve tried the newest item on Qdoba’s menu, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please leave a comment.

Cheers!

Ker

Turkish Cuisine at Tulip, Milwaukee

Last Friday, “Stairwell Guy” and I drove over to Tulip (a little over a mile from my place) to help my friend Phi celebrate her birthday.  We were the first to arrive, just moments before 7PM, and we took in the atmosphere.  Tulip is an expansive space, casually yet elegantly decorated with a friendly staff.

Once the other 20 people showed up – yes, Phi and her husband have loads of friends and family who turned out for this event! – we found our way to a large table off to the side of the restaurant.  It was somewhat secluded, and perfect for our party.

The gang's all there!

The gang’s all there!
Photo courtesy of Phi’s Facebook page.

 

The crowd was fully of friendly and engaging folks, making the evening comfortable and fun.  Lots of conversations happening in smaller groups all night.

Jeff and I had trouble deciding what to order because so many things sounded interesting and several items came personally and highly recommended by Phi and others.

Ultimately, Jeff landed on the Iskender (marinated lamb and beef roast, sliced thin and piled atop chopped pita bread.  covered with savory tomato sauce and drizzled with butter with yogurt on the side).  This was a heaping plate of meat that I wasn’t sure Jeff could finish.  I was wrong.  🙂

We both thought the Kayisili Tavuk Sarma (boneless chicken breast flattened and filled with crushed pistachio and apricot, rolled and baked to perfection) sounded intriguing, so I decided to order it (with rice pilaf on the side).  The chicken was moist and the filling was flavorful.  The portion was a bit too much for me, so I slyly slid two chicken rolls onto Jeff’s plate, which he eagerly ate.

I also tried a bite of Phi’s Doner (Turkish Gyro: marinated lamb and beef roast, sliced thin and served atop of bed of lavosh bread), which was quite yummy as well!

As I looked around, nearly every plate was completely clean.  It seemed that everyone enjoyed their meals.  And, for a group of 22 people, I have to say that the service was quite impressive.

It’s nice to know there is a good Turkish option close to home, though a bit “off the beaten path”, so to speak.  It’s in the Historic 3rd Ward neighborhood, but not on the main drag.  It’s worth checking out, in my opinion.

Have you tried Turkish food before?  Do you have a favorite dish?  Would love to hear from you!

Cheers!

Ker

 

 

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