M3: confused waitress or weird definition?
Allstonian and I went to M3 this evening prior to the Carolina Chocolate Drops show at the Somerville, in part because we had recently noticed that they had a chicken-fried steak on the menu and I'm still looking for a quality rendition of that dish hereabouts. When the waitress took our order, I asked first what cut they used for the chicken fried steak. (The time Deep Ellum served me a chicken-fried skirt steak made me gunshy.)
Waitress: "It's the breast."
Me: "No, I'm sorry, I was asking about the chicken-fried STEAK. What cut of steak is it?"
Waitress: "Right. It's the breast. It's a chicken breast."
Me: "The chicken-fried steak is a chicken breast?"
Waitress: "Right. They pound it out and flatten it and bread it, that's what makes it a steak."
Me: "Okay. That's...that's not what a chicken fried steak is."
So we finished ordering, and the waitress went away to put the orders in. I unwrapped my silver from my napkin and realized that the fork had cremated macaroni and cheese all over it. I looked over at Allstonian, showed her the fork, and shouted over the blaring Depeche Mode song on the way-too-loud soundsystem, "Do you just wanna bag this? I have a really bad feeling about this meal." She immediately concurred and stood to leave. I walked over to the waitress and said "You know what, we're just gonna go. Can you kill that order?"
As we were leaving, I thought it best to explain to the hostess why we were leaving, so I handed her the silver and -- very politely -- suggested maybe someone needed to have a chat with the dishwashers. As I was walking up, I swear I think I heard the manager explaining to the waitress, "No, the chicken fried steak is..." Since at that point our mind was already made up that this wasn't going to be our night to try this restaurant and we already had our raincoats back on, I didn't press the point at the time, but I'm still curious.
DOES M3 serve a chicken schnitzel and call it a chicken-fried steak? Or was this waitress just totally unclear on what this menu item was, so she started talking out of her ass when asked a question about it? Either one of these things are serious points off, but I'm still willing to give this place another shot, on the assumption that they were having a really bad night.
However, our dinner at Amsterdam Falafel was entirely tasty and the Chocolate Drops were amazing as always, so we pulled the night out regardless.
Kudos for spotting that the universe was aligned against you eating at M3 and making the move. It beats staying and getting pissed off.
Hilarious... it's nice when your server knows what the heck (s)he is talking about. Thanks for the heads up. Born & bred Bostonian, Bruins Fan, and Irish as they come... but I went to school in TX, ("Did time." IMO, any time in TX is 'doing time.') and developed an affinity for chicken fried steak among other local specialties & novelties. Hope someone can report the REAL review of the CFS! Haven't been to M3 yet... will have to check it out. (but it'll be difficult to drag a guy like me away from Redbones if I'm in the Square...as spotty as they might be with the 'cue, I still love the place, the decor... the tap selection... oh yeah, and my southern-born wife likes their collards. )
Try typing 'steak' into Yelp's search. I did see one person say it wasn't what they were expecting (but were they expecting chicken?) but there are enough mentions of it that I think *someone* would have bitched if it were chix.
OTOH half of them are saying 'country fried' so who knows.
Chicken Fried is its own subgenre in meat cooking. Breaded in thick batter and fried, you can have Chicken Fried Steak, Chicken Fried Chicken, Chicken Fried Fish, etc.
I think your waitress was just confused about the whole "chicken" thing. The Chicken Fried Steak is steak, and not a notable cut.
I too, typically, see Cube streak (in TX) but here... my experience is that they use whatever they think is ok for the day. Yes, It's supposed to be a little stringy, and I think the texture of the cube helps to hold the batter. Do you guys dare to print this thread out for her/them @ M3? (evil. sorry.)
I think it's great to find so many northeastern CFS proponents! ...not to mention everyone from everywhere to also provide a 'proper' CFS primer!
:-) Slainte to all.