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A free meal and dessert can help make turning a year older a little less daunting. Okay, so perhaps not really, but its still a nice gesture! A local chain restaurant here, Not Your Average Joes, has a program for guests where you sign up to be part of their members e-mail club. All you do is sign up by putting in your name, e-mail address, birthday, store you visit most often and create a user name. Once you become a member, you have access to VIP events, recipes, insider news and members-only specials. The kicker is the individual restaurant nearest to you sends you an e-mail with a 2-week time-stamp (starting before and running after your birthday) offering you a free complimentary dinner and dessert at any Average Joes of your choice. If you realize that your birthday has passed and you did not receive your e-mail, you can e-mail corporate and theyll sort it out for you. Pretty great for a restaurant!
My mother and I are both signed up as members. My birthday just happens to be 2 days before hers so we tend to go together to enjoy a meal. This year, my boyfriend joined us. Both my mothers and my meal and dessert were free my boyfriend had to pay for his meal and we paid for the sodas and coffees we purchased.
To start out the restaurant puts out freshly baked onion bread. Which is heavenly and totally addicting. The onions caramelize in and on top of the bread and its just deliciousness. Its presented alongside some cheese blend mixed with hot pepper flakes and olive oil.
For meals I ordered the <strong>Mediterranean Chicken.</strong> This particular meal is described as lemon and garlic marinated chicken breasts with almond jasmine rice and an arugula, olive, cucumber, tomato and feta salad, served with pizza crisps and a ziziki dipping sauce. I have had this on numerous occasions and its really quite good. My pizza crisps werent present on my plate, but due to the bread I had eaten I wasnt going to request my pizza crisps (which are really little breadsticks cut into triangle slices.)
My mother ordered the <strong>Pecan Chicken</strong>. According to the menu, the pecan chicken is a brushed with a carolina mustard, crusted with chopped pecans, pan-seared and served with house-made barbeque slaw and sweet potato steak fries. My mother isnt a huge fan of sweet potato fries so she asked them to substitute for their garlic mashed potatoes.
My boyfriend ordered the <strong>Chipotle Barbecue Turkey Tips</strong>. According to the menu, this dish is citrus marinated on a skewer with red peppers, grilled and glazed with an orange-chipotle barbeque sauce, served with almond jasmine rice pilaf. I did try his as I let him try mine and ohhh was that delicious!
Now <em>dessert!</em> I admit I shared this with my boyfriend because it was so delicious and incredibly difficult to stop eating. We were both stuffed to the gills but shoveled this away. I ordered the <strong>Crème Brulee Cheesecake</strong> (my mother ordered the same thing) which cutely enough was presented to us with birthday candles in the cake. The cheesecake is a perfect blend of crème brulee and cheesecake the top being crisped with sugar and a blow torch. Its served with raspberries and fresh whipped cream. Soooo delicious!!
Overall the food and service was fabulous. This is the 2nd year Ive enjoyed a meal on Not Your Average Joes accord. Not bad, not bad at all!
Do any of your local restaurants offer you free meals for your birthday?
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