Saturday, May 29, 2010

a lazy sunday afternoon

last sunday was proof summer has come to cincinnati - clear, sunny, sweltering (merely a trifle of what's to come, i'm sure). a couple girlfriends and i met up for a leisurely lunch at cabana on the river. the cabana provides an idyllic setting for such a lunch, nestled along the banks of the languid ohio river.

we seated ourselves (as the sign indicated we should) and waited for a server to approach the table. after 10 minutes, we grabbed some menus from a nearby stack. and waited. then waited some more. it wasn't that servers weren't obvious, rushing around between the tables, doling out coronas and hamburgers. they were just not coming to our table. it had not even been completely cleared from the previous occupants. finally, after a half hour of progressively increasing thirst, elisa approached the bar and asked for some waters. instead of giving her the waters, the bartender indicated she would send a server over. she regarded our table and asked where we got the menus. elisa replied we had seen a stack and decided to look one over as we waited for our server. the bartender offered this as the explanation for why we had not been served - apparently all the servers would think someone else was helping us because we already had menus.

cabana lesson #1: don't proactively snag a menu to peruse while you wait for a server. you will be waiting for a long time.

we finally ordered, and more importantly received the illusive cups of water, then sat back to chat and watch the river meander past.

first to arrive at the table was jessie's black and bleu salad. the amount of bacon, steak, and bleu cheese effectively cancels out any nutrition from the lettuce, but jessie did say the beef was delicious and well cooked. all salads are served in plastic to-go boxes.

next up is elisa's portabella sandwich. she pronounced that the mushroom was tender and had an agreeable flavor.finally, my chicken salad sandwich. i am generally very apprehensive about ordering either tuna or chicken salad, because i am uber-picky about "picnic foods". i never know what i am going to get, and it may be disgusting. i was orginally going to order the turkey burger, but we sat there for so long waiting for the server that i began to wish for something cool and refreshing. i should have stuck to my original inclination and ordered the turkey burger. the mountain of chicken salad dolloped on the bun could have used more chicken and less relish and mayonnaise. the flavor fell flat. also, until this sandwich appeared on the lunch table, i had no idea kraft made swiss cheese singles. the overall effect was unpleasant, but i was starving by this point and gobbled everything up.

cabana lesson #2: go with your first instinct when ordering.

and, cabana lesson #3: don't pay the extra $1 to top anything with their swiss cheese.

i don't know if i've been extra crabby lately or what, but it seems like every restaurant door i've darkened lately has led me astray. hopefully this trend will end soon, cause i'm hungry.
Cabana on the River on Urbanspoon


JKNEPFLE said...

Agreed. I don't think I've ever enjoyed a meal there, and that's a shame. The turkey burger happens to be the best thing I've had there, but that ain't sayin much.

Heather said...

We go to Pirates Cove quite a bit - basically same place just the other way on 50 - and the service is very quick. The food is decent - not amazing - but not too bad.