Okay, this isn't really my ass. It actually belongs the the unwitting, well fed, and I'm sure very nice person sitting next to us at Ninfa's in Houston. But if I don't get the hell out of Dodge soon, that "one chair isn't enough" girth could be me! Between the feeding frenzy going on at w's parents house, where every meal is an exploration of delicious Chinese, and unfortunately for my weak will, overabundant cooking courtesy of her dad, then it's going out to a place like Ninfa's, where overabundance seems to be their credo. Unfortunately high quality isn't.
w had been to Ninfa's on previous trips to this city built on a swamp (with all the discomfort that entails), so after eating yet another extravagantly generous and satisfying dinner the night before her parents house, we went to Ninfa's for lunch for an ethnic change of pace. Ninfa's is a mini-chain, with locations scattered across the endless sprawl of Houston. We chose the original location, because it seemed like the best way to get the flavor. It was jammed at midday, and we were squeezed into a dark corner table and immediately set upon by their very friendly waiters, whose mission it seems to be to make sure you are served endless (free) chips and salsa, drinks (average margaritas), and so-so Tex Mex food in large ass portions.
We started out with Shrimp Poppers, which were a bit too cheesy and unremarkable except for its over-mayonaissed dipping sauce. Then came two Pork Sopes (left), little masa cups with shredded pork, salsa, and sour cream which we both really liked, and which in her wisdom, sensing stomach real estate trouble ahead, w was wise not to finish. Of course, and as always, I was not.
For her main plate, w ordered their red fish tacos (left), which she thought were really well done. Not in the dry, over-cooked sense, but in the tasty, correctly made way. Fresh fish, crisp, not-too-heavy batter, hand made tortillas, nice sides of salsa fresca and guacamole. To achieve my goal of becoming like my friend in the picture, I ordered one of those combo plates with a crispy beef taco (good), chicken fajitas (very good), and a cheese enchilada (disgusting). All the calories and fat without the satisfaction. Mmmmm........
The service from our waiter was stellar, the food mediocre, and proves that if you throw gargantuan portions of mediocrity at people for a reasonable price, they'll keep coming.