Thursday, April 7, 2011

Caros

UPDATE:  The review below is for Caros which is now Don Juan's Restaurant.  A review of the new restaurant will come eventually.  Thanks for reading.  But don't be shy about skimming my goat meat story below.  It'll make up for the wasted time of reading this message.

I get three emails a year asking where to have a whole roasted goat party.  I'm not sure why, but obviously I'm meeting a need with this review.  And, no, they're not all Aggies.

Caros is on the Blue Bonnet Circle on south University Drive and is a small, long-time favorite Mexican restaurant of many in the City.  I am not one of the many.  The price and taste of the food doesn't draw me here very often.  In fact, the only time I go is when people ask me to join them (and I desperately crave attention, so I go).  And although Caros is most famous for their puffy tostados and tacos, Caros has a unique notoriety for their "special" on the front page of the menu. Their "special" is a goat party. Give them two weeks notice and they'll wrangle up a young goat, put it over a fire and prepare a typical Mexican dinner with all the trimmin's - and a goat. The "special" feeds about eight for approximately $100. Unfortunately, I don't know seven people who would join me. Heck, I don't know seven people.


Bear with me for a moment as I word-paint you a story of a young man's goat history. 
A young lad, ventures through the city park in Brady, Texas on a hot Labor Day afternoon during his first ever World Championship Goat Cook Off.  Large pits of charcoal, slowly cooks tender, fall of the bone goat meat for an upcoming competition.  Samples are readily available.  The goat lust begins.  That same young lad, at home during the summer, a latch-key kid if you will, sits patiently in front of the TV as the funniest, most sincere show in history begins.  A unique family with two uncles, a formerly dirty comedian as the dad, two twin babies and a future drug addict sit in a park in sunny San Francisco.  No doubt, they were waiting for a goat party.  That same young lad heads out the door to the backyard to feed his two pet goats, named appropriately, Lunch and Dinner.  Fast forward to 2008.  That young lad first learns of the goat parties in the park at Caros.  Was the bucket list about to get a little closer to completion?

No.  If my previous meals are any indication of how the goat party would go, we'd have burnt beans next to a dried out goat, a surly owner/waiter, a grease lined piece of paper in a basket that was filled with puffy tostados, and dry tea glasses.  The only redeeming qualities I've found are the puffy tostados, guacamole and homemade salsa.  The three of those in any combo make for a delicious treat.  If only that were the meal.

I've had the enchiladas and the tacos and both were bad.  First, the enchiladas, are actually the enchilada - singular.  And although it didn't taste like anything had been burned, it didn't taste good - unless you like sour chili.  For about 8 or 9 bucks you get one enchilada, burnt beans and rice.  The tacos looked good when they came out, but the meat in the tacos was burned and tasted dried out.  Is my use of burnt and burned driving you crazy?  Good, because burned/burnt items drive me crazy.  Now we're on the same page.

The owner once told me that goat parties were done in the traffic circle park at one time.  Then the City asked them to stop serving goat in the park.  This story was told wistfully and the owner seemed to reminisce about the old days as though now everything is different.  Maybe in the old days the food was good too. 

I've been holding off on writing this review because I've longed for a goat party ever since I knew they existed.  I kept hoping I'd get roped into going back and have a good meal.  It hasn't happened.  It may just be that my goat dreams are that - dreams.  But for now I'll never know how the goat party goes.  No Aggie jokes there please, the Supreme World Universe Empress Champions of the Women's NCAA Basketball Tournament deserve your respect - not your goat jokes.

I'm sure many of you disagree with me on this because I hear lots of people say (incorrectly) "you have to go to Caros - its soooooo good."  Just remember, its okay for you to be wrong because you're not blogging about restaurants to the world.  I am, and I have a duty to the people to tell the truth (new policy).

Let me know what you think.

Caros is located at 3505 Blue Bonnet Circle.

Caro's Mexican Restaurant on Urbanspoon

16 comments:

bourgon said...

Man, you're missing an opportunity here! Dinner. With. FWHITW, only $15. Get 10 people, because somebody will always cancel, and this way you're not stuck buying half a dry goat. $15 should mean no out of pocket for you, and any extra money gets given to charity or spent on desserts or something.

cd0103 said...

I am totally with you about Caro's. I have never had good food there. Don't know what the draw is.

Amy said...

Um, you might want to check the difference between a lass and a lad.

FortWorthHoleInTheWall said...

I thought that looked wrong. Thanks - change made.

Tdecast said...

Been here a few times, the novelty of the puff tostadas or whatever wore off. I've never had anything good here. Really am curious about this goat party though.

Ashley N said...

I agree! I've never enjoyed my experience there very much...I've always thought it was too greasy. I don't understand how some people love it.

FortWorthHoleInTheWall said...

The novelty wears off quickly. The little puff tostados are great, but that's only part of the meal.

I agree the food is greasy, but that rarely bothers me at a Mexican joint.

Thanks for reading.

robinaguilar said...

You're right the food is off and everything is overpriced.

Terry H said...

I've never been there but my husband went last week for the first time and his reponse to his experience went something like this - "Next time you want Mexican food, I don't care where ya'll go b/c I'm going to Caro's!"

FortWorthHoleInTheWall said...

Terry H, sorry for your impending divorce. I'm sure you'll find somebody with better taste next time.

Thanks for reading.

Sheena Elenbaas, LMT said...

I agree! The first time I went, the place was dead, and the waiter doted on us. The food was decent. I had the fideo, but it was nothing like my grandma's fideo. Still okay, though. So I went back another time during their Concerts in the Alley and they were rude, overcrowded and my husband and I waited 45 minutes to even be greeted. I won't be going back until they get their act together.

Love your blog, by the way. It's always helped us find new and interesting restaurants in the area. When you get a minute, come visit mine! http://fortworthbow.blogspot.com/

Homer said...

Ok so no on Caros. I don't think I've seen a bad review on FWHITW. I've been here a few times, such a great site indeed. The Wife and I are always looking to try new places.

FortWorthHoleInTheWall said...

Well, the reviews are all generally awesome, but thanks for the compliment.




Yes - I'm going to read that comment in a way that pats my back.

-FWHITW

Anonymous said...

I have been going to Caro's since i was 2, that was 41 years ago..sad to say the food has gone downhill while the prices go up..I tell my friends Caro's is like beer..an acquired taste, but my last trip month ago with my family may be my last..just not worth the price anymore

DMartin216 said...

I was once invited to Caro's employee picnic, back when I was a student in San Antonio and had a habit of stopping by the family's house (behind the restaurant) in the middle of the night while passing thru town. One gril was shrimp, another elk, and the third was cabrito (goat). It was delicious!

Zee said...

http://www.star-telegram.com/2011/05/26/3106294/eats-beat-pick-a-sad-song-for.html#tvg

Adios, Caros.