Each week, the Cheap Bastard goes looking for a new place to eat a meal for less than nine million dollars. This week, she haunts Raul's Corral, 200 Corinth St., 214-428-4500. Her mind wasn't blown by the food, but it was kind of nicely felt up.
Times I wondered if I'd seen this place in a movie, "Or was it a nightmare?": 30 Gas stations nearby boasting "hot foods": 15
When you see a giant longhorn statue in front of a restaurant, you pull the car the fuck over. (Same rule applies for any giant animal statues. In fact, if you're operating a restaurant and you don't have a giant animal statue out front, I'm not sure why you even own a restaurant.)
When you do pull over, you'll discover Raul's Corral, a Tex-Mex restaurant that also claims to serve steaks. That giant longhorn out front isn't actually in the Raul's parking lot. It stands in front of the ghost town next door. I'm not kidding -- there's a ghost town there, complete with ghost-town murals and ghost-town statues and ghost-town signs that actually include the word "saloon" and glaring-at-you ghost-town squatters. It looks like something straight out of an old Six Flags. Shoot your next shitty short film here.
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Walking inside Raul's is even more awesome than I could ever have hoped it would be (except there were no strippers). Everything's old. Everything's brown. It's like being inside your grandpa's leather couch. It's clear that every tchotchke on the shelf in here walked in brand new and slowly grew into an antique. There are things on these walls that have vintage dust on them.
Pick a busted, old booth. Order the combination plate (chalupa, cheese enchilada, tamale, rice and beans) for $7.50. Say unto your meal, "Hey, stereotypical plate of Tex-Mex foods, thank you for gathering here today. I will now praise your names on high as I eat the shits out of you." And then do that.
My server at Raul's was great. She was generous with the cola refills, and she even pointed and laughed at a chile relleno that came out with a weirdly shlong-looking stem on it. But the food wasn't mind-blowing. (Note: The thought of a cheese enchilada giving my mind a blow jay is, in fact, shockingly unappealing.) Honestly, it wasn't even mind-motorboating. But it certainly meets the standard. If you're choosing between going somewhere for an enchilada and going somewhere that has a giant longhorn statue out front and an awesome ghost town attached to it for an enchilada, please make the obviously correct decision. You will thank you.