bystephen, June 20, 2014
Updated from Last review -
I returned to Rowdy the next afternoon and had a good conversation with a managing partner. They are open to new ideas and want to make sure execution is done well. This was a case of the new staff not executing the food properly.
The brisket is also NOT smoked, only roasted. I did suggest possibly using a bit of smoke to provide some distinction between it and the pulled pork.
I tried a properly made Baja Shrimp taco that was having proper seasoning and a mildly spiced sauce and it was much better. I told him I'd still rather have larger shrimp that won't over cook and the input was welcomed. I think Rowdy has a good potential when they get the execution by the new staff in place.
bystephen, June 12, 2014
Not really sure where to start with this review. I got a to-go order and it was done in a very short amount of time. like 90 seconds or so. I had just filled my drink and they called my name. Asked which salsas I wanted and since I had never been I asked for some of each. I got 3 tacos and expected to share with someone to try out rowdy's offering.

I got a Baja Shrimp Taco - Grilled.
It was all cold, not just the cabbage which would have been fine cold, but everything. It had 3 tiny cold salad shrimp on it and the cabbage and ingredients were under or even unseasoned and tasteless. It was on the smallest white corn tortillas you can BUY, they certainly were not custom made or store made. They had no character and were also cold. This taco was two large bits or 4 very small bites at the most. I flooded it with the habenero salsa after the first bite. The salsa was quite good and it is hot. Hotter than torchy's Diablo. Grade on scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being best. This would have to be a 1.

Next I got a Pulled Green Chile Pork Taco
Same sized as the shrimp, with pulled pork that was barely warm, and tasteless. I was expecting some green chili here! The pork seemed to be cooked ok but just had no seasoning, no green chili flavor at all, and was not hot. Grade 2/5

And the last taco I got was brisket (non BBQ one)
These brisket are supposed to be smoked for 16 hours, I think 'steamed' would be a better term than smoked. There was ZERO smoke flavor, not even chemical liquid smoke flavor. For the most part it is slightly darker than the pork but tasted the same, like nothing.
Grade 2/5

I got the Roasted Corn Queso, and it was just ok, nothing that great.

I also ordered ghost cheese which I did not get at all, but after the rest I fear it would have just been disappointment anyway.

General notes: They put onions and a lot of cilantro on everything, if you don't like that make sure you request it to not be on there. For me it was the only thing that made the tacos even edible.

Since I got this togo I have not yet spoken to the manager but I will likely do that soon.

The salsas were quite good, but nothing worth going to Rowdy to eat. The food overall was very costly for the amount you get $3 per taco, or over $1 a bite, and the bites are good.
bystephen, November 2, 2012
This is a local company and I hate to not visit, but I am not sure I will be back. I got eggs benedict, which I recently had from the new Egg and I as well, for a direct comparison. The poached eggs were entirely too cooked, the yolk was solid, and they were in a former and not just poached in water like they should have been, you could not even see the yolk so I guess it is no surprise that it was over cooked.
The english muffin was fully tasteless, and very very hard to cut. The hollandaise was properly made, but no flavor of any sort, so in essence totally wasted fat and calorie. I did not eat a pancake but was told by one that did that it was very plain and no flavor as well.
Service I don't really like to mention often as it can vary but it seems to be a theme at this company as I see from other reviews, got pasta bowl instead of fruit bowl on one entree, and when asked about it we got a fruit bowl, that was charged to us as a side. I got the unlimited coffee but no one ever came by to give a refill of any drinks much less the coffee.

Unless you just have to have a waffle or some pancakes, the Egg and I is a much better choice.
bystephen, November 2, 2012
Dining here tonight because other places were already closed/closing, I wasn't impressed. The salsa is served out of squeeze bottles and lacks any real flavor. Same for all the foods except the rice which was some of the better in Waco. However the rice can't make up for very generic ranchero and nachos that were served. The place was quiet and the man that was doing everything up front was friendly. It would be a good place to go and talk to someone in a calm environment while munching on some chips if you like the bland non spicy salsa.
bystephen, October 16, 2012
I can't give this an 'eggcellent' yet, but that is mostly because it is early in the process, they are packed, and things are taking a long time. The food is quite good, even takeout and eaten 15 min later in the office as it was.
I ordered the philly benedict for myself. Overall I give it very high marks, the muffin could have been a bit warmer and melted the cheese, but otherwise it was very good, and something I will eat again!

Another in the office got a deluxe egg sandwich, wished it had been over easy eggs but otherwise said it was great and enjoyed the potato. If you want the deluxe egg a bit runny just ask I am sure they will gladly do it.

My only reason for giving it lower marks right now, is that they were very very slow for what should be quite fast. I am however not marking off too much as they are new and I not only hope for, but expect improvement in the speed of the cooking portion of the process. I waited about 25 min today, which I think is too long for breakfast/egg dishes, but it is early and that will improve!

I'd much rather go to egg and I than to denny's or IHOP, the location is great for me, and the environment is good and friendly, I expect I will eat some early morning end of day 'dinners' at breakfast hours there in the month months.
bystephen, September 16, 2012
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Quaker Steak & Lube
I was expecting more of the fried stuff, but they actually have some decent grilled options!

I had triple atomic grilled chicken, very tasty, not very hot. I am thinking about going back for lunch after the nightcap last night for more. I will have to take some dave's insanity sauce and the source to make it a little warmer.

So I really like the fact that the grilled chicken also came with some pita bread, it was a good difference.
I also got it with steamed broccoli, which was unseasoned during steaming, I may see if I can ask for a touch of salt, on the other hand I got the beer cheese on the side, and it is a bit salty.

I also tried the boom boom shrimp which is fried, and the only alternative also fried. It was very good, but as a grilled shrimp with the same sauce and the little minislaw under it, would be stellar! It could even be baked instead of fried with the breadcrumbs, and still be crisp and good in the same way.
I am just trying to stay away from the fried (and somewhat breaded) things these days so would like an option on that level, otherwise I was quite pleased with the flavor of the foods. Yes, the triple atomic is 'hot' but it has a lot of flavor as well. The boom boom shrimp has a mild but not overpowering sweetness and a small slaw as mentioned.

It is late night dining (fri-sat 2am, please open extra days those hours!), that is actually good and not just microwave reheated tasting junk foods. Something Waco needed!
I am not a big fan of buffet style places, and this is the only such place I will not give a fit about going to visit when friends and family want to go to a buffet.
The food is good quality, the steak fingers melt in your mouth, some of the best I've ever eaten.
the other items rotate a bit the swiss steak is alright, the smothered pork chop is quite good. The salmon patties are the way I like them, not much salmon flavor(at leas the fishy taste, I like salmon flavor if not overly dirty tasting).
The conbread and rolls brought to the table are nothing to write home about, but the small (and this is key the only good buffet is a small one unless you have HUGE traffic volumes) buffet line for hot foods is very good.
The salad buffet is also small, but good flavorful southern salads, many pickled items like okra, cucumbers, beets, and some others occasionally.

Desserts are not my favorite here but the rest is good enough I rarely want dessert :)
bystephen, May 29, 2012
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Solid entry that took months to open, which is possibly the biggest issue for it to overcome now, other than so many mexican dining options.

I found their pricing to be very good for the entree quality.
Willing, and able to deliver on a modified menu entry, combining the spicy sauce off their Diablas Fajitas on the Bistec Ranchero.

The beans and rice could use a bit more love of spice, even possibly some salt. The cheese and salsa were free so I can't complain about the cheese being plain and not a con queso. Salsa was ok, but nothing exceptional.

However when it came to the entree, it was wonderful, the best ranchero I have eaten in Waco. During my salsa tasting spree I had multiple samplings of Ranchero none of them meeting my expectations, many of them too dry, and some having large amounts of chili powder.

I did not go for any dessert or drinks, but they had some cheap Margaritas. The bistec ranchero was $8.99 and I got a togo order for the con queso nachos(6.99). My employee that ate the nacho's was surprised that they had a bit what you may call fajita ends, not ground beef, a good surprise, and they did a good job of making the pico, beans, and sour cream in separate containers to prevent getting soggy. He said it could have used some cheese on the top, as it was all on the bottom.

Overall summary: Good main dish portions of the food, close to my work many days of the week, will return.
I got the spicy pork bulgogi, and while it was very good, it was hardly spicy.
I enjoyed the kimchi was also tasty, it too was lacking in spice. I know there are many concerned about the spice, even inquiring to get 'not spicy' when ordering, but the food even when claiming spicy, is not spicy at all. The overall flavors were enjoyable, and diverse. The crispy fried tofu was a nice little expected touch for the dine in bulgogi meal. The extra sauce, was also not spicy, so I ended up wanting more spice level all around, but left overly full, and having had an enjoyable meal.

I also got a spicy tuna roll, as it is a real pleasure when I get a spicy tuna roll that is really having the defining word 'spicy'. So it failed by that regard, and generally the tuna was over minced as well making it a bit mushy in texture. It was near closing, I will let this slide once!

I'd like to see a Wasabi Salad on the menu, it is super easy to make, cheap, and a great appetizer, I asked if they had that and got blank stares. They have everything there to make it, already, so it would be a no-brainer to serve even on request!

one minor complaint that I had, but no one to really mention it to, would be that it smells like a drain vent is gone stray near the soda fountain, WHEW!
bystephen, February 8, 2012
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
I dine at 135 Prime regularly since last August, most of the time the food is very good. I've gotten to know the staff and chefs well, and make sure I always provide input to them on the food.

If you have never been and afraid of the prices, I would highly recommend going during the happy hours from 4:30-6:30pm M-F and going for some of their sliders or other bar menu items. Sometimes I go in just to order the Caprese sliders. It did not sound that great initially but after having once I was hooked.

their weekly specials are generally good, but they have been through a lot of transition in the last 6-8 months. They are a step above 'good' but not excellent, but the bar tenders are friendly wait staff generally quite good.

I really enjoy getting the mushroom risotto and the New Orleans style bbq shrimp, it makes a fine meal at a price about the same as many other options in town.
bystephen, November 8, 2011
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
I went in today and had a late lunch, or thought I would.

I ended up eating the black beans on the Creamy Chicken enchilada, a bit of rice, and the sauce from enchilada. There is a picture of it uploaded in my album, aside from a standard fare 'upscale' plate (but not presentation) the food was very uninspiring.
The sauce was quite ok, but the chicken was reheated dried up cubes, that had no salt and no seasoning. Frankly, I thought I was at Chuy's eating a flavorless meal. Sure Chuy's may be busy, but is hardly something to be emulated for the food.

I paid for my meal after a rather slow service, but I was alone and not complaining about that one bit. after speaking to the manager who was receptive to my complaints, I may return but want to see major improvement.

I saw one plate of the special chicken and dumplings returned with what looked to be maybe two bites out of it. The other had a burrito and almost entire of it there. The older couple next to me disliked their food(barely ate any) and disliked waiting with nothing to snack on, I understand that part, but they liked the chips and salsa of La Fiesta.

I picked the chicken out of my enchilada and ate the overly tough, probably microwaved to death red corn tortilla. It was super chewy, and did not even want to cut. The sauce over the top was good.

I highly recommended that if they are not going to make fresh chicken, they MUST do something to fix that pre-cooked stuff and warm it in chicken broth, a scoop of the creamy sauce they put on top, anything would be better than what they served. I left and could have stopped at Taco Bell on the way out....and I hate taco bell.
bystephen, November 2, 2011
Smart business to introduce chicken first and then push to the lebanese cuisine. I have never tried the chicken, when I learned they had falafel I went right there. I went in at a slow time of day and talked to the owner, he asked me if I ever tried grape leaves, why yes I have(at a lebanese diner in europe with a lebanese friend!) and they are horrible! AH, the challenge! He told me to wait a few moments and out he comes with a plate of grape leaves and says, "TASTE!". I was changed, grape leaves here, are perfection. The do not have the horrible bitterness I have tasted in most every other grape leaf, and I highly recommend you try them at D's. Stuffed with rice and chicken, they are great alone or with the tzatziki. The hummus and baba ghanoush with pita crisps should not be missed either. Once can make a meal of stuffed grape leaves and the 'chips and dips'.

The location is a bit of a hole in the wall, but inside it is clean and more roomy and it looks on the outside.
Don't forget to get a baklava to go on your way out.
bystephen, November 2, 2011
I ate here during their celebration of crab a month and a half ago, or so. I had the baked seafood(featuring crab) dish. The dish overall was fair, it could have used some seasoning. However upon tasting the scallop, I fully understand why many people do not like scallops, they were horrible, and a BAD example of what a good scallop should taste like.
Honestly reviewing this now, I remember most the piece of corn on the cob that was well seasoned and wonderful in my baked seafood dish. I think there is something wrong with that, if what you remember tasting best, is a piece of corn on the cob!
The crab was uninspiring and just run of the mill, I could get the same thing going to HEB and buying a cluster and throwing in the oven for 15 minutes.

The biscuits aren't even as good as I remembered them from long ago when I last ate at Red Lobster.

There are however quality places to get scallops if you so desire, 135 prime has an entree dish for about $13 that is wonderful, and they have Asian and other presentations with scallops that are also very good and reasonable. If they just had Crab, we'd be set on at least one place in town to eat some decent seafood.
bystephen, November 2, 2011
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Cafe Homestead
While this is not technically in Waco, it is well worth the drive!
Pastrami melt? simply the best beef pastrami I have ever tasted, along with that it comes with fresh baked bread and their wonderful cheese.

Daily specials rotate around a lot, all I have tried are good. The BBQ plate is very good, while it is not traditional BBQ fare, it is the best I have had in Waco, and the BBQ sauce is made there and very good.
While there you should ask about their dinner events, they are more frequent now, and if you want some good food in a great atmosphere, you simply will not go wrong with a Cafe homestead dinner!
bystephen, November 2, 2011
Clay Pot
I looked for this place a year ago, and google maps lead me to the wrong side of the road. I didn't visit it until about 3 months back, and now I go every other week or so. I saw past reviews on the internet about frozen veggies, blah presentation and food. Now, I am not seeing that. I have ordered several daily specials and some of the clay pot dishes, and all of them have been good. The owners are friendly, and open to anything critical you may say, and will change it for you if you ask next time.
bystephen, November 2, 2011
I enjoy the Chopsticks at wooded acres, they are prompt, and will make the food extra spicy for me, and have amazing soups. This location is simply not as good. As an example, two dishes were ordered one was beef and broccoli, and one was orange beef. In both the beef was like the largest chunks of stew meat you could imagine. There was a MASSIVE amount of food on eat plate, but it was not cut up at all, and incredibly hard to eat. This size also prevents the food from cooking properly, or tasting they way they should because it it too large.

I mentioned it to the owner at the Wood Acres location, and he said he would pass the message along, I went back since then and still it is served the same way. With a bit of a run down building, and sub par food, I won't be back to this location.
bystephen, November 2, 2011
It used to be in the shopping center behind the current location. It was a chinese takeout centric place, and had decent food.

Now, I circle around Valley Mills to avoid the stench. Just after I moved back to the area after being gone over 10 years, I decided to see if this place was still good. Sad to report, it was among the worst 'chinese' food I've ever seen or tasted. I felt bad even before I stepped out the door.
bystephen, November 2, 2011
Cathay House has a decent menu.
I have however been highly disppointed in the Orange X(meat), it is overly cooked to the point that it is highly bitter.

On the other hand, they have very authentic chinese soups that are very light, exactly the way a real chinese soup is flavored and made. Their Sunday buffet is a great value and the only buffet in town that I will partake. It generally is all one note in color and flavor, but at least it is edible.

It is also a very cheap sunday meal, and it is ALWAYS crowded. Service can be slow however.
bystephen, November 2, 2011
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
It is a place to avoid.
The only thing even edible are the 'seafood' pastries. Everything else tastes the same, bad.

I went alone, and my family just had to have it one time against my recommendation, and they agreed for the most part. Lo Mein was decent that day.