Las Troias (New Mexican Restaurant)

In the mall, by one of the two entrances across from Chick-fil-a they are adding provisions for outside dining and a new Mexican Restaurant has announced plans to open.  I doubt it will be like the routine Mexican restaurants in the area but I also haven't heard of this chain.  Will be glad to have another though.

 

Be as the Bereans ( Acts 17:11 )

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Agreed!  I'm glad something new is coming to the Florence Mall because, with the loss of Sears, and the possible loss of JC Penney, in the future, the mall needs to have more stores opening here because there are enough leaving the area.

Several folks have noticed that the sign is down and it appears that work on Las Troias has slowed to a crawl but at this point I don't know if there is still going to be a new Mexican Restaurant in the mall or not.  I don't know if anyone else knows what's going on, maybe they just had to slow down due to funds but hopefully they are not going to cancel the project as it looked like it was going to be a good (much needed) addition to the Florence Mall at a time when they really need more growth. 

I swung by Las Troias tonight when I picked up my granddaughter at the mall and saw some women outside their door talking.   I ask about their opening and was told that they expected to open sometime next week (September 27 -  December 1st) .  We'll see but it looks nice and should enhance traffic at the mall.  

So I went to Las Troias on opening night 12/06/2017. First impressions were very good. Atmosphere is second best of any restaurant open currently in The Shoals.

BTW: I rank Umi as having the best atmosphere and I rank The Pie Factory as having the third best atmosphere. I do not rank the 360 Degree Grill in the Top 3 because I only count what is on the restaurants property.

Anyway, the front staff was knowledgeable knowing the bar menu/seating policy, which sections were open, and how to get to the bathrooms.

So far so good, I noticed Las Troias has a large dining area with several TV's in it. If you don't like a restaurant with a lot of TV's I definitely wouldn't recommend Las Troias but if you like to watch all the games at once, Las Troias would be a good place to watch them.

We had to wait about 15 minutes for a table, not too bad considering it was opening night.  Once getting a table the chips, salsa, and drinks arrived quickly. And I noticed Las Troias has special drink glasses (even for non-alcoholic drinks), that are blue. Only downside being you can't tell what's in the glass based on color, with the blue tent blocking most colors. This is the point where we ordering our food, and things went downhill ..... quickly. We waited a long time, during this time we went through 2 bowls of chips, a drink refill, and the table across from us that came in after us got food. You know there is a problem when a table that comes in after you gets food before you do. I had ordered 2 crunchy shell tacos plain with only the ground beef inside. Somehow the kitchen screwed that up and brought me 2 taco salads plain with only ground beef. I had to send them back. They did fix it rather quickly but so much time had gone by waiting that we had a place to be and were forced to get our food to go. And, they didn't comp us anything! Boo! They should have comped us for the messed up tacos at least. When we've had problems at Applebee's and Logan's in Florence, both have partially or fully comped our meal but not Las Troias!

I recommend not going to Las Troias for the next 3 weeks. Hopefully, that will give them time to sort out the bugs.

first never rate a restaurant when they  first open, after all they are still in learning mode.  Second why does everyone think they should get something free at restaurants?  how many times do you mess up?  does your work comp something if they make an error?  Many a times I have had to go back to a store and not gotten anything more than sorry.  Now think about that you have to drive to the store (not to mention find the time) where at the restaurant it just cost you maybe minutes.  Average restaurant profit is around 5%. Maybe we should all just slow down and relax.   

so back to your work, what do you comp?

I went yesterday (Thurs) at straight up 12 noon. For a brand new place during the lunch run, they did pretty good.  The place is huge. The only issue was there were two large bay leaves buried in the rice and beans that should have removed after cooking. Brought it to the attention of the manager, not as a complaint, but as an fyi. He was grateful for the information. I did feel the prices were a little steep. Especially on the lunch menu.  Other than that, I enjoyed it.  The food was fresh and good.  It is expected to have hiccups the first few weeks a restaurant is open, but lunch yesterday seemed to go okay for them.  A heck of a lot better than the first few weeks when Capones' opened last January. That was a real Charley Foxtrot. But they turned it around and have done good.

I also went on the first day.  I hate to use this analogy but when it comes to new restaurants, in the Shoals area, I'm like a cat to a new litter box, I have to jump right in and try it.  That said I went at lunch and arrived at 11:30AM because the signs said they would open December 6th.  I entered through the outside door only to discover that they weren't opening until 12:00 Noon but then there was several others in the restaurant that made the same mistake as I did in assuming they would open at 11:00 AM.  

Yes, I agree, the atmosphere was very good and pleasing.  Yes, they do have a large supply of Televisions and each on different programming and positioned to be seen from several locations within the restaurant, a good thing.  I also was taken back by the dark blue glasses for the same reason, not being able to determine what was in them at a glance.  I got unsweet tea for sweet and there was others who got water instead of a drink but those things can, and are, worked out in time.

As for my impressions of the place.  The service was good considering it was opening day and the server(s) were very accommodating and friendly and fast as they could be expected to be given I don't think they had a soft opening for a trial as some places do.  The menu is very expansive and not out of line with most Mexican (tex-mex) restaurants.  I ordered the Fajitas (mixed (Steak & Chicken)) and found them very tasty.  Their Fajitas though was more like those found at Casa Mexican or Fiesta Mexicana compared to those offered at Rosie's Mexican Cantina which is more a Tex-mex type offering but they were very tasty and I will order them again.  I will also say that the quantity you received, for one, was very plentiful however I would have liked to have had more shredded cheese to put on my fajitas.  Another comment was that you could also specify whether you wanted corn or flour tortillas to come with the Fajitas.  I preferred the flour.

I also was impressed with the amount of salsa you received with the chips that were brought to the table as it didn't come in a small bowl as with many Mexican restaurants but it was a fairly large bowl with plenty of salsa.  The salsa was also not overly hot/spicy either and the chips offered were more of the thin variety than the thicker chips but I don't believe that they are made in house but rather are brought in from the outside and rewarmed.  I will attach some menu images but I was not able to complete taking pictures of the whole menu so a few of the back pages are missing.Front cover of MenuAppetizers and NachosSalad and A La CarteLunch Specials and ChildsFajitas and BurritosSeafoodSteaks and Combo Meals

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1130 posted:

first never rate a restaurant when they  first open, after all they are still in learning mode.  Second why does everyone think they should get something free at restaurants?  how many times do you mess up?  does your work comp something if they make an error?  Many a times I have had to go back to a store and not gotten anything more than sorry.  Now think about that you have to drive to the store (not to mention find the time) where at the restaurant it just cost you maybe minutes.  Average restaurant profit is around 5%. Maybe we should all just slow down and relax.   

so back to your work, what do you comp?

I can understand reluctance in reviewing a new restaurant but I feel it's appropriate just as long as people know it's a newly opened place.  True they are in learning mode but that's why some places have soft openings or family openings so that they can get accustomed to serving people.  Additionally, many times, staff will have worked at other restaurants so be more familiar with what goes on and more accustomed to the pace.  

As for the comp issue I have some conflicting views.  I do believe that restaurants, or businesses, should compensate customers for errors that are obviously the businesses fault.  I do know that some restaurant patrons go in and set up situations where they try and get free things or free food but I think those are a small minority of people.   When a restaurant makes a error then I believe it's their obligation to compensate if that error is a large one and ruins the meal or to the point where the patron is no longer able to eat due to the error.  If it is a mistake though, maybe caused by the staff misunderstanding the order or the kitchen not understanding it then some leeway can be given.  

Most people know that if a steak is undercooked you can cook it up a bit more and most don't mind waiting so no biggie but if they over cook a steak and then do it again then it's fair to expect that the steak will be comped and most times the patron that ordered it can't eat it anyway given the time that went by and they have filled up on bread and drinks.  Or there are times when a customer has to leave due to time constraints and doesn't have time to wait for a restaurant to make it up.  In the case of Riverzurinski I do believe they should have not been charged for the food that was in error, or should have been issued credit toward a future meal.  

I eat out, more than most, and I don't expect it but when a mistake happens, as they do often, and it's taken care, whether deserved or not, then you, as a patron, not only are more willing to overlook certain errors but are more apt to return much faster, back, to the restaurant and have a much better feeling about the place and the management.   When you feel that you have been taken advantage of, though, then you aren't as apt to return so quickly or freely.  Also some places charge a premium for their product and thus you have higher expectations as you are paying more for the product.  If a place is going to charge you for perfection then they should deliver on it.  

Also there is so much competition these days, for a customer's dollar, anything a restaurant can do to up it's ante is to it's favor (my own opinion mind you).  I don't feel obligated to take the brunt of a businesses mistake just because I'm there to patronize them.  I look at it as their business is to serve me and they are there attempting to do it one better than their competition in order to earn my money.  Yes I believe minor mistakes should be over looked and especially with the understanding that a place is new but a gross error or gross mistake or one that ruins the whole meal should be compensated, at least that's how I feel as it's the restaurants responsibility to get it right once the order is correctly given/delivered.  It's like if you pay a painter, or any service provider, but they do a bad job or make a error then you aren't going to want to pay full price for a substandard job, you expect them to make it right or fix it.  I believe the same is expected of restaurants that make errors.  A mistake is one thing but an error is another all together but often determination of the difference between mistake and error is so subjective and vague.  I will, though, return to Las Troias as I believe it will be a very good restaurant and improve the choices in the Mexican/Tex-Mex cuisine.

KThom posted:

I went yesterday (Thurs) at straight up 12 noon. For a brand new place during the lunch run, they did pretty good.  The place is huge. The only issue was there were two large bay leaves buried in the rice and beans that should have removed after cooking. Brought it to the attention of the manager, not as a complaint, but as an fyi. He was grateful for the information. I did feel the prices were a little steep. Especially on the lunch menu.  Other than that, I enjoyed it.  The food was fresh and good.  It is expected to have hiccups the first few weeks a restaurant is open, but lunch yesterday seemed to go okay for them.  A heck of a lot better than the first few weeks when Capones' opened last January. That was a real Charley Foxtrot. But they turned it around and have done good.

"Charlie Foxtrot" ... yeah I know what you mean by that!  I watched Heartbreak Ridge also and by no means do I believe that's the only place that term was used.    I would dare say that in many places of Government run things "Charlie Foxtrot" is Government speak for "Standard operating procedures". especially in the Veteran's Administration which hopefully our current leadership is seeking to remedy as many "Charlie Foxtrots" as they can find and as fast as they can find them.  Sadly too many entrenched, habitually incompetent, managers and leaders are employed till retirement.

You dang right I called out the bay leaves. Those things can be choking hazards if they are not completely whole. I've seen it happen. And no, I didn't call the manager over, he sat down right beside me to talk to the bartender and asked me how I was enjoying the meal.

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