I simply have to review our recent experience at La Palmera II Family Mexican Restaurant. We went in on Valentine’s Day evening with a group of 17 people. Yes, Valentine’s Day. Very romantic, si? This happened because it was the only time we could get together with our family plus some out-of-town business associates [who had invited us] and their families and we were all fine with it.
The husband and I were the first to arrive at about 5:30 and we asked about a reservation; we were reminded they don’t take reservations, but no problem. We thought there might be about 12 of us, and the staff set right to work arranging a large table for us complete with all the service items, waters and menus. The showed the two of us to our seats and brought chips, salsa and (my favorite) pico de gallo.
As others in the party began to arrive it became clear that there were going to be more than we thought. Someone mentioned 17! Without batting an eye the staff, including Hector the owner, began rearranging the furniture and resetting for 17. Did I mention that we were comprised of 12 adults, 1 teen, 1 tween, 1-4 year old, 1-1 year old and a 5 week old infant.
I do mention this because this could have been a recipe for disaster in some restaurants, but Hector and his staff handled the whole thing with aplomb. While refilling our chip basket and our waters, they brought chips with salsa for the rest of the table and took beverage orders with nary a hiccup.
All the plates came out [I didn’t time it, but it seemed] in less than 10 minutes, and we were all served as close to the same time as you could ever imagine. How often have you had it happen when you’re in a large group, that the meals come out one-at-a-time and one or more diners are forgotten? Not here!
From the excellent quality of service, on to the quality of the food. I didn’t query anyone else after they finished, but when I glanced down the table all I could see were clean plates. As for myself, I ordered the Steak Fajita. The grilled steak arrived sizzling hot as it should, perhaps a little heavy on the onions, but including tender yet still snappy green and red peppers. The sides included a container of warm tortillas, and a plate of rice, beans, sour cream, shredded cheese, lettuce, guacamole, and a sprinkling of olives. Except for the rice being a little on the cool side, it was perfect and plentiful; I did have to ask for a “doggie” box.
There were a total of five couples and it may not have been the romantic evening with our sweethearts we might have planned, but it turned into a fun, happy multi-family night. The 5 week old slept through it all with bliss, and we all got a chance to hold her.
We commend the owners and staff of La Palmera for obviously loving their guests, their business and their jobs. It shows. Thanks for showing us such a great time. Do tell.