Tortilla Sam's

107 Highland Street
Worcester, Massachusetts




Needs Work

One of my friends who recently read over these restaurant review pages had mentioned to me that he liked what he saw, but had really hoped to see more "not recommended" reviews. In evaluating my 4/16/2002 trip to Tortilla Sam's, I discovered that I was rating it a "Needs Work"... but I once again want to put this restaurant in the "recommended" category. I am perhaps a little too forgiving in one sense... but then again, the purpose of these reviews is to inform the reader and not just to state an opinion.

To put it more succinctly, T-Sam's (as it is colloquially known) is another one of those eateries which is an exception to the rules. And the reasons for this are many, as I'll explain more below.

In many ways, the restaurant is unique: it's one of the very few Mexican restaurants in Worcester, yet it also happens to have one of the most vegetarian friendly menus I've ever seen - with unique items like Tofu Buffalo Wings and their much beloved green chili. The decor is pleasant and lively, really wonderfully done... but the only music ever playing is Reggae, which is just completely incongruous.

The menu simply has a huge tableau of choices, all of the traditional Mexican fare you can think of - often with a trademark twist. Fajitas by the pound is another amazing and fun take-out option; and the Sam's Secret Sauce wings are a taste sensation that is not to be missed. Everything is also very reasonably priced, and the restaurant itself is open until the very early hours of the morning, making it one of the few options available for late night dining.

The one thing that really, really hurts T-Sam's the most is their constant problems with service. You can't expect to take any less than 2 hours to eat a meal there. Food quality is usually consistent, but the servers are either too busy to take care of you or they end up forgetting what you needed. If they could just fix these service issues they would have a really solid "Good" rating, and I wouldn't feel so torn over placing them in the "recommended" column.

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