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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Dinner Report: Carl's Jr On Bandera Road...

Thursday has turned into fast-food night for us and usually, that means What-a-Burger. Tonight, we had business on Bandera Road in Leon Valley to get some plants for the yard, and we had our nephew with us. He saw some coupons for Carl's Jr., and we were off.
Carl's Jr. opened here about four months ago. It seems like they had a Carl's Jr. over by Lackland in what is now the Taco Cabano on Hwy 90 and Military, twenty years ago, but they left.
Inside, the place was teaming with crew members holding doors, welcoming guests, passing out menus and taking orders. In spite of a group of folks in front of us, a cashier got our attention and motioned us over to take our order. Not only did they give a 10% military discount, they girl looked through my wife's coupon book and looked for the most money saving option. The three of us ate for $13.00, not bad at all.

There were TV's on the wall and the place was very clean. Speaking of military discounts, we saw a waitress approach a gentleman seated near us and seeing his Navy cap, shook his hand and thanked him for his service.
This has never happened to me before. We paid for the vittles, grabbed the cups and headed to the drink machine to grab sodas and an employee came walking out with our order. I wanted to verify the number several times because I could not believe that the order hand been assembled that fast. The girl followed me around until I could choose a table to sit in. Then, throughout our meal, we had a minimum of four visits from different staff members asking us if we needed anything, offering to take discarded wrappers or refill our drinks. I seriously thought we were being filmed for Undercover Boss, because these people were unbelievably awesome in every way.
Okay, about the food. I had the Jalapeno burger. Let's be honest. Doesn't hold a candle to What-a-Burger. But it was a lot cheaper. The onion rings are like BK onion rings, only you get them 15 minutes sooner. But this is fast food, not Lord's Kitchen.
We were pleased to see they had a Mariachi band serenading the customers. It turns out, this group Trio Los Yaquis is the same group we have hired at least five or six times over the years for Mother's Day, weddings, anniversaries and that type of thing. They played three songs for us and then would not accept a tip. How cool is that?

I went up and spoke to the manager to tell him how great things were and asked if this was the grand opening or something, and he told me they do this all the time - they even have Karaoke night.

Without losing sight of the fact that this is still fast-food, I can't tell you how refreshing it is to see a business and the employees just bending over backwards to make the customers welcome and want to come back. Hell, I'm prepared to try everything on the menu (not in one sitting of course) just because of the fantastic experience we had. Don't you wish some of the more expensive places you visit would give customer service a try?

By the way, if you have never had it, try the Carl's Jr. Breakfast Bowls. When I was in LA for a week a few years ago, I had them every morning. Simply awesome.


Maureen said...

We went for the first time on Sunday night, and while there weren't any mariachis, the customer service was incredible. The place was packed, the food was pretty good, and the kids working were just great. We'll definitely be back. It's always packed when I drive by and I am not sure it's for the food....that service can't be found at many places.

Albatross said...

My experiences there have been much the same. I'm impressed with the atmosphere and the serivce. And the burgers aren't bad, either.

It's on my return list.

Sabra said...

Huh. Guess we don't get that treatment on my side of town. I've only been to the one on FM 78 right by Rittiman, and tho' it's clean I've been distinctly unimpressed by everything else, and haven't bothered to go back more than a couple of times.

Then again, I'm still kinda irked that we got Carl's Jr. & not Hardee's. Hardee's has a great roast beef sandwich that I was disappointed to find missing from the menu at Carl's Jr. (and since that was pretty much the only reason I ever went there when I lived in Virginia...)


i wish we had a carls jr. instead of the sonic.i love the sonic but i love those roast beef with green chili's and cheese sandwiches..sigh*

YVONNE said...

We have had great service as well.. I work in Leon Valley, so we frequent Carl's Jr.!!! oh, and my father in law plays in Los Yaquis, they are wonderful! (No, I'm not biased! lol)

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I love to observe the odd things happening around me as I go about my day. I especially like it when I can get a picture of people being themselves. Here, I attempt to report the various people and events I have encountered in my neighborhood, and my city. I'd also love to hear from you. Feel free to e-mail your experiences and photos of life in San Antonio.

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