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Adios, Amigos: Corner spot offers dismal food

Our breath created foggy halos on the windows of the Metropolitan, obscuring our view of white linen tablecloths, high vaulted ceilings and the architectural black silhouettes of the wait staff.

Intermittently the door breezed open and, as designer handbags and tailored suits jostled by us, we received wafts of the rabbit quesadilla with creme fraiche and smoked tomato relish. We indulged in the smell of a vegetable tart made of eggplant, zucchini, artichokes and tomato oil. We treated ourselves to the scent of the Atlantic salmon wrapped in basil, pesto and strudel leaves floating through the doorway.

They were just as we imagined them, peering at them through our glass wall - artfully arranged little masterpieces of food designed to please all the senses free-of-charge, except, that is, the sense of taste. Sadly, as the semester nears its end, so do our bank accounts. We had too few cents to afford this sense.

So did we have an alternative? A way to feed our starving college bodies? We wandered over to the new Mexican joint on the Corner, Amigos, for a cheaper option.

To eat at Amigos demonstrates either a lack of cents or a total lack of sense.

The restaurant leaves a bad taste in one's mouth. There are times when a restaurant just stinks. Sometimes this is a result of a very pungent kitchen odor, and sometimes it's because the restaurant serves up poor food poorly. In the case of Amigos, the recent addition to the Corner culinary scene, it would be as a result of the latter.

Students may not have many cents, but that does not mean that they deserve a poor dinner. Yet, that is what they receive at the fast food-esque Amigos, a bastion of many Mexican options for which the sensible diner may not want to opt.

There are quesadillas composed in the rawest form, tortillas wrapped around a single slice of cheese and then seemingly microwaved. Served with nothing on the side, they look sad all alone on an empty white plate. And they make you feel sad that this is dinner.

Sometimes words do not suffice to describe things in life, often because they are wonderfully indescribable, other times because they are somewhat traumatic. With Amigos' meals, it is often because the food defies description, defies specific culinary understanding and defies notions of that which is palatable.

Items such as the chalupa, similar to that of Taco Bell fame, confuse the mind with their food ambiguity. They are, again, tortillas which are in turn covered with lettuce and an assumed bean product, but it is hard to discern their form or function, smeared as they are amongst other concoctions in one of Amigos' many combination plates.

Combination plates, in fact, are supposedly an Amigos' signature. There are hundreds to chose from, but the choices are not the choicest. Fajitas are fine, but tamales are tepid. Other menu items could be described, but they need not be. They simply can be summarized as bad.

Food, in fact, seems not to be the draw of this restaurant. Easily accessible at its Corner location, Amigos does not have much else going for it. You pay for meals at a bleak counter - in the tradition of the fast food genre of restaurant - and get change. And that is what the diner wants at Amigos: change.

It's close, it's cheap, but it's just no good. And going there just doesn't make sense, no matter how you spell it.

So while Amigos isn't worth a mint, a mint is what you will pine for after eating there. Even if the food at the Metropolitan only existed for us as food for thought, sometimes it really is the thought that counts.


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