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Killing the romance with bad restaurant choices

Choosing the right restaurant will set the tone for a wonderful date.
Choosing the right restaurant will set the tone for a wonderful date.
Rick Dikeman

This author is a huge proponent of creating romance and fun dating activities on a shoe string. Many young adults are experiencing their first recession and at just under 10%, the highest unemployment rate in about 26 years. For many of us the economy is affecting our lives significantly. Small businesses suffer and two income families may have been reduced to one. The healthcare debate becomes a personal concern instead of just a headline on CNN that pertains to others. Shrewd families have every dollar under a microscope.

So in 2008, spending $70 at a restaurant may have been merely a blip on the financial radar. Today spending the same amount creates a ping in one’s side along with “buyer’s remorse”. $70 could be the equivalent of one to two weeks worth of groceries, depending on shopping savvy.

While embracing more meals and romantic evenings at home, Houston couples still itch to go out. They want to enjoy familiar comforts and also experience new adventures together and with friends. Money concerns can grate on anyone’s nerves and there’s nothing worse than dropping bills at a restaurant and coming away feeling like it wasn’t really worth it.

Because of their moderately high prices and poor tasting food, one of our worst meals out was at Denis’ Seafood House on 9777 Katy Freeway. It’s a mystery why we chose this restaurant considering how garish it looks from the outside. It was about 9 pm and pretty dead as we walked in. The host said they were closing and as we turned to exit, he told us he was “just joking” and motioned to a booth. Annoying greeting.

To make a long story short, the first sign of a terrible meal to come was the salad. The waitress recommended the homemade cilantro lime dressing and was nice enough to bring a couple others dressings for us to try on the side. Hard to believe, but they all tasted weird and unbalanced. It’s very unusual to receive bad salad dressing.

W we ordered flounder and the golden tile fish that the waitress suggested. Fish entrees ran $20-$30 plus $7-$8 more for seafood toppings. The fish was boring and bland and the dirty rice was mucky. Whatever else we ate was forgettable. We didn’t fault the personable waitress for the lack of training and talent of the chef, so after tax and tip we were looking at a bill of $70. In foul moods, we walked hand and hand back to the car wishing we hadn’t spend money we shouldn’t have parted with in the first place.

Houston couples do not despair! Learn from our mistakes. Having a good night on the town just requires a little more preparation than before. Please continue to the next article which reveals excellent easy-to-use resources for finding affordable restaurants in your area.


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