Are There Good Fajitas?

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Ian Froeb
What am I missing?
Recently, as I sometimes do, I drove a major thoroughfare until I saw a restaurant where I've never eaten. Which is how I ended up having lunch at an unnamed Mexican restaurant in a strip mall. (Why I'm not naming the restaurant should become clear shortly.)

As most Mexican restaurants have multiple lunch specials, I figured I could at least evaluate a meal for our Lunch Bucket List feature. I ordered a lunch portion of the fajitas -- smaller and not served on the usual sizzling cast-iron platter.

They sucked.

There was no flavor to the meat or vegetables except the char from their cooking. Only a healthy dose of habanero hot sauce made them palatable.

Oh, well. I took a chance on an unfamiliar restaurant, and it didn't pay off. It happens a lot in this line of work.

Except, as I thought about it, the fault was mine, not the restaurant's. I couldn't remember an occasion when I wasn't disappointed by fajitas. In fact, I feel confident in saying that fajitas are the most consistently disappointing meal in the universe.

I'm not talking about St. Louis exclusively, either. I've eaten fajitas in Texas, at restaurants that were true Tex-Mex, rather than the Mexican/Tex-Mex hybrids we have here, and I wasn't blown away then, either.

So I seek your help, friends. Sincerely, I do: What is the secret to good fajitas? Seasoning and/or marinade? Do good fajitas, in fact, exist? If so, where?


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