Lunch with Brian

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Jaime's Spanish Village, May 21, 2009

Still focusing on Red River District restaurants in downtown Austin, Brian and I headed to my car for a visit to Jaime's Spanish Village. The elevator in the parking garage at work smelled like licorice which wasn't bad but made us wonder what happened that made it smell like that. Maybe some kind of licorice extract spill or a fennel fiasco.

At Jaime's, we parked right out front at a meter and for the second lunch trip in a row, the meter didn't steal one of our quarters.

According to Jaime's Web site, they've been serving food since 1931. On the way in, we saw a sign that lead us to believe they'd lost their liquor license. We wondered why, but we weren't going there to get boozed up, so we weren't bothered.

Inside the restaurant, the ceiling was low, and it was dark until they turned on one of the neon beer signs. Then it was dark with a red/orange glow. The menus were both hard to close and hard to keep open, permanently bent at that perfect angle a choir member holds the music folder during a performance. Because it was dark, I found myself trying to read the menu as if I had bifocals. Tilting my head up, but looking down. This was even more odd by the fact that I don't wear glasses at all.

We didn't order an appetizer, but noticed the half orders seemed pretty high priced and wondered how they define "half." For example, the full order of Beef, Beans & Cheese Nachos was $8.95, and the half order was $7.75. Maybe most of the cost is in the labor?

Madonna was on the radio singing about a holiday. Then Rod Stewart was singing about a reason to believe. We think it was the hit parade that is Austin's Magic 95 radio. There weren't any people there at first, so I tried to annoy Brian by singing loudly with America's "Sister Golden Hair," but Brian's pretty hard to annoy or hides his annoyance well. I kept singing loudly when other people came in, but not for long because I grew bored with being obnoxious.

The chips and salsa were good. They were both warm. Brian ordered the special of the day, Quesadillas Supremas Beef. I ordered the Chicken Enchiladas. I also ordered some flour tortillas and butter, but it took a couple of requests to get the butter. The butter turned out to be liquid butter in a squirter. It reminded me of the time I went to a Mexican restaurant in Texarkana, and they served something pale orange in a squirter. I thought it was queso and ate some on a chip, but it turned out to be thousand island dressing. Not so good on a chip.

Elton John came on the radio singing "Tiny Dancer," so I sang along some more. I checked to see if they had free wi-fi and was pleased that they did.

The longer we were there, the less impressed we were. We were held hostage waiting for the bill and then our credit card receipts while listening to Bruce Hornsby sing "That's Just The Way It Is."

I think it was one of those times when we were glad we went, but really don't have to ever go back. Brian called it "Tex-Mex for those who don't know better."

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