When I was a teenager I’m pretty sure I spent a good proportion of my time at TGI Fridays. It seemed THE place to go for any occasion – birthday parties, lunches while out shopping etc! I can’t even remember what food I had back then, but I do always remember being literally in love with one of the dips that came with the starters!!
Fast forward 15 years, and I’m not sure the last time I set foot in TGI’s – its possible it was before my 18th birthday! A few weeks ago whilst out shopping in Touchwood Solihull we needed somewhere for a spot of lunch and being bored with the usual chain options they have in Solihull – (Ask, Nandos blah blah) we decided we would give it a go, under strict instructions from husband that the word birthday must not be mentioned in any type on conversation, in case there were suddenly singing waiters standing on our table.
I was immediately very impressed with TGI’s though – they are obviously inundated with children as a highchair arrived by the table before we were even at it, the pram parked for us right by the front desk and swiftly after this a children’s pack arrived complete with a pink balloon dog for Imogen!
Feeling instantly relaxed I decided to have a cocktail!
The menu was reassuringly familiar, despite the length of time that had passed. :Luckily, after reading the menu, I was pretty sure what starter it was that had that amazing dip – the JACK DANIEL’S® SESAME CHICKEN STRIPS topped with toasted sesame seeds and chilli flakes. We also chose another chicken starter – Boneless Hot Wings – Crispy chicken breast chunks, tossed in hot sauce and chillies with a Bleu cheese dip and shared them both.
Now lets get this straight, this isn’t food that’s going to blow your mind with its intricate presentation or imaginative flavours BUT it was well cooked and really tasty and actually, I was impressed.
For my main I went for something that sounded a little different – CRISPY NOODLE SALAD – With red chillies and tossed in a hot and spicy Thai dressing. Topped with toasted sesame seeds, chilli flakes and cilantro and a garlic chicken breast.
The crunch noodles were odd, but in fact worked pretty well. I expected a tame dish in terms of spice and heat, event ought the desperation states a hot spicy thai dressing often in chains I think they play it safe. Not the case, the dressing blew my head off ( in a good way!)
Lee went for one of the hot dogs – JACK DANIEL’S® CHILLI Topped with Jack Daniel’s® beef chilli, onions, Colby cheese, chillies and American mustard. Again, for this type of ‘fast’ food Lee was pleasantly surprised. Better than a few hot dogs we’ve had in other places of supposedly better qaulity (Rub Smokehouse, The SmokeHaus..)
Family Friendly? Very, you really couldn’t ask for much more. Good kids packs, balloon animals, great staff and spacious changing areas.
Overall we were so much more impressed with TGI’s than we expected and would t definitely hit up the chain again when out and about with Imogen! (Really, it’s all about that Jack Daniels Sauce…TGI’s if you’re reading this please bottle it and send me some)