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Dec 10, 2008 06:06 AM

Cabo Tequilla Grill, Chester, CT (Long)

Because I work in the area I am able to know about new restaurants, and this was one. It's in the spot Sig's was (on Water Street, behind Main St.)
My friend and I went on a Friday night without reservations. There were tables open (at 7pm) so we got one right away. At first we felt like we were getting great service, but after having plates almost taken away while we were still EATING I was getting the impression they were just trying to turn over our table. This would have made sense if the place was packed but it wasn't. The entire time we were eating there was at least one table open and the bar wasn't full, either. This always annoys me, especially when we were going to have everything form starters to dessert and be spending some money.
The margaritas we had were the house version, I think they had a Cointreau floater. They were excellent, tasty and strong. The guacamole was ok (mine is better), chips were good (seemed like they make them there.) We split a three taquito (sp..) starter which was supposed to have a different meat in each one but all tasted the same to us. We also had some clams with chorizo which were good, but without the chorizo wouldn't have had much taste. I had a skirt steak with black bean salsa main dish which was great. The steak was cooked rare as requested, and my friend enjoyed her quesadilla (which I didn't try.) We had some chocolate cake for dessert which was also great (I doubt this was made on the premises.)
Bottom line: The best parts of the meal were the drinks and dessert, if I want really good Mexican/Tex Mex food I'll go to Coyote Blue in Higganum instead. It's a nice change for Chester, so they were smart to open with a different genre than Du Village, River Tavern, etc. I'll hit the bar after work for margaritas and maybe the skirt steak, but they need to work on the service, nobody wants to feel rushed though a $150 meal.

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  1. $150, wow...Did the bar bill account for a large portion of that? Real margaritas or made with sour mix?

    1. Thanks for the heads up, Dennis, sounds like one I will skip. I like the idea of expanding the choices in Chester, but if it doesn't out-do Coyote Blue and costs $150 for two, I will pass. As for the empty tables, if they had a party with a seven thirty reservation, for example, you might expect a table to be unoccupied at seven in anticipation. Rushing you was unexcuseable, though.

      1 Reply
      1. re: jkuhlen

        I have to say in all fairness it was about 150 with tip, and a couple of rounds of drinks, starters, main dishes, desserts. And yes, the maragitas were real!

      2. My wife and I went to Cabo's when it first opened and liked it. We went back a couple of weeks ago and I must tell you that it was perhaps the WORST dining experience I can ever remember. Drinks were HORRIBLE, they must have changed their margarita formula to save money, salsa was tasteless, served different salad than ordered, my wife's verde quesadillas were bland and tasteless, and the service was just a joke, totally confused and disorganized. A good friend went there last week for the first time and her reaction was the same. I would NEVER go back, too many other good choices to tolerate this nonsense.

        1. We were regulars @ Sig's and had unused gift certificates that we had given one other, which Sig had said were contractually included in the sale of the restaurant.

          Knowing this might not be true, I tested the waters at Cabo's. We'd have felt welcomed with a complementary appetizer and some sympatia, and would have understood if we were offered minimal compensation for our $200+ remaining credit.

          The manager treated me like a criminal. No smile, no empathy, no humor, nada.

          Locals who would gift one another generously with visits to their around-the-corner restaurant get the boot! Fast! Not a flicker of intelligence either!

          Glad to hear we're not really missing anything.

          1 Reply
          1. re: zzuska

            @zzuska, I don't think you're being fair. Expecting to walk into a new business and telling them that you have gift cards from the previous business in the same spot and would like to use the cards. Don't you think thats being rather harsh. The previous business was paid for the gift cards, not Cabo but yet you are going to give a bad review because they wouldn't accept some one elses giftcards, Shame on you. Maybe you just read the person wrong and your are mad at them because they couldn't give you what you wanted. I have to say as someone who lives in the area I quite frequently go to Cabo and have to say my friends and family love the place. Yes they have had some ups and downs but so do alot of new businesses. Maybe you should give it a try and lighten up. I know the staff well and they are a real fun bunch of people. I am a manager at a business and I know the owner of the business I manage would NOT allow me to honor a gift card from another business. so cut some slack already.

          2. I like this restaurant! Was just there last week. My friend and I have been there twice and we both have gotten the salad with the grilled shrimp and avocado (can't remember the name of it). Will go back again next month when I'm in town.