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Friday, May 23, 2008

Is This Tacoma Restaurant Cursed?

What’s the deal with Masa restaurant on Tacoma’s 6th Avenue? Friend and fellow blogger, Patty and I have wondered if there’s a Masa curse. Both of us have had the experience of having restaurant dates and meeting up with friends canceled or postponed when this restaurant venue is arranged. Then there’s the Masa division—you like this Mexican restaurant or you don’t (I’ve only talked to one person who was in the middle). The good news: Patty and I personally broke the curse with an early April dinner there together. And I have subsequently been back with family members just recently. As far as the like it/don’t like it argument, I still find the same division.

Personally, I like the food. I eat primarily vegetarian (though I have seafood here and there). For me, I can find some really great menu choices and I have enjoyed their margaritas. I know others who like the food, too. Mostly, my service there has been good, with the exception of some sluggish (though still friendly) service on my last visit. The menu had changed over a bit; for me, nothing changed, but for the party I was with, it gave them more choices.

Now for the other half of my friends, other restaurants tend to be preferred over Masa. These were the folks who were there with this restaurant in the early days, when there were kinks in menu and service.

I want to see this restaurant fly. Under the Asado restaurant umbrella (which by the way, Asado’s Argentinean flavored cuisine, is now my favorite place to go in Tacoma), I want its Masa cousin to flourish. I am not a restaurateur or particularly adept in the business, so I offer no hard core solutions. I do ask two things fine readers and bloggers: 1. What makes a good restaurant to you? 2. If you have eaten at Masa, where do you stand?

Signed, Kim, Tacoma foodie and willing to be the world’s oldest intern for Ed Murrieta.


Stephanie Frieze said...

Argentinean?! We will have to check that out.

Lorraine Hart said...

Both great tasting food and something special in the service factor-in for us to think about spending hefty wads o' cash...first for the gas to get anywhere (and back!) and then for the restaurant tab. You could bring me an entree made by the gods themselves...but if a gum-chewing young dolly leans her elbow on my table and calls me "Hon" I will not be back to spend the cash.

Sorry I can't weigh-in on the great Masa debate Kim! The restaurant business must be really hurting in these economic times.

Patty Cake said...

I think you should be Ed's intern LOL! Yes, the Argentinean food is delicious at Asado. I LOVE the lentils with steak - sorry Kim, I know you are a vegetarian!

The Masa curse is odd! I scheduled at least five dinners meetings there all which were cancelled at the last minute due to illness or trips to the emergency room! I am serious!

Kim Thompson said...


Yes, it's Argentinean cuisine and the service is amazing. It's small and intimate. Check out their site for a sample of the food.


I TOTALLY agree with you on the service thing. Plus, for you guys, getting into town is a bit of a drive. Although, I am wondering if you've tried the new Mexican place (I think it's El Sombrero) right in your area. My folks really liked it.

Patty: I think Ed should hire me as the world's oldest intern. I would be very helpful. Ed are you reading this? If so, you have my offer. Also, we'd love you to chime in on Masa. And Patty you are right, whenever I've tried to plan something there, it NEVER works (except recently). Isn't that weird?

I will be back to Asado Sunday. Oh happy, happy, joy, joy!

Stephanie Frieze said...

Kim, my son would like to know the address and price range on the entrees of Asado.

Lorraine, I agree that service is always a big component of the dining out experience.

If you Eastsiders want to venture over to the Harbor, El Pueblito downtown is one of our family's favorites as to taste, price and service. When one has a large family all that is a consideration.

Lorraine Hart said...

I love El Pueblito!

I've also been wanting to check out the new Mexican restaurant in Key Centre...I think that's what you must be referring to.

There's always "Taco Tuesday" at Lulu's Homeport...practically at the end of our street...and most definitely within our budget. My hubby might get smacked with a menu for his silly sense of humour...but that reminds him of a New York he's happy! Ole!

Kim Thompson said...

Oh, Lorraine, my family LOVES Lulu's. And yes, the new Mexican restaurant in the Key Pen is cool. Stephanie, on my blog post when I note Asado, click on it and the link will take you to their site. Some stuff is spendy, some is not at all. It's located on 6th Ave. in Tacoma (specifically 6th and Pine). I've talked to the owner who goes to South America regularly and knows the land well. He was a treasure trove of knowledge.

JosephMcG said...

from the Soul Brother... I have to have my rice...
like in rice, hot sausages, scrambled eggs and corn bread,

or red beans, rice, corn bread

or red beans sweetened with hot sausage (cooking them together gets me sweating and salivating), rice, and corn bread

or rice and anything

footnote... no syrrup or jelly with that cornbread... just thick and hot and ready...

so.. anywhere I can get me some rice, I am ready and I won't be petty

Kim Thompson said...

Yum, Yum, Joseph!

You know, the rice sides at Masa are terrific; I like it paired with the black beans and the Mexican street corn, fresh roasted.