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For my birthday and the willingness to accept their advertising emails throughout the year, I received several free things: Coldstone ice cream, Baskin Robbins ice cream, a burger from Red Robin, and an entrée from Lonestar Steakhouse. 

 

My dad took me to Lonestar (he’s a fan of steak), though we had to drive across town to the nearest location.  I’m writing to endorse the Lonestar Steakhouse in Littleton, Colorado.  Their service is absolutely tops.  Here is my story. 

 

Arriving at about noon, the parking lot was full, but the two of us were seated right away.  The waiter came along in a minute or two, the intervening time spent with pails of peanuts.  He was polite and efficient, asking us what we wanted to drink and if we would like a few more minutes before ordering.  Having looked up the menu before we went, both my dad and I knew what we wanted, so we ordered right away.  The waiter continued his courtesy and thoroughness, proving a knowledge of the user-friendly menu.  He collected our menus and departed. 

 

At this point I scanned the restaurant, including the staff and the other patrons.  One wall was painted an orange and yellow Texas scene.  There was a saloon style bar on one side, and on the other a row of tables flanked by walls of hunting trophies, longhorns, saddles, spurs, and my dad even noticed a jackalope.  After a short discussion about the range of jackalope and antelope, the waiter delivered the free brown bread and butter, which proved to be soft, warm, and tasty. 

 

I watched a man who seemed to be organizing his wallet.  Another waiter a few tables over made an excellent offer of drinks to a child, “Can I offer you a Pepsi product?”  I mean, how many times do you sit down in a restaurant and before you can find the drinks on the menu, they’re asking you which you want, and you ask them what kind they have (because Mt. Dew isn’t available if they serve Coke, and Coke is no comparison to Pepsi)?  Then they have to go through the whole list when they could have simply asked the way this waiter did.  A man with a limp walked by, leaning on the seat of each booth as he passed, so a waiter offered him his arm to get him to the hall leading to the bathroom.  An older employee bussed one table in a hurry as a favor to the host, who was in need of the table. 

 

Dad’s appetizer, a Texas Rose (deep fat fried onion with spicy-creamy dip) came out shortly thereafter.  I don’t like onions, but Dad said it was good. 

 

When our waiter delivered food to the table next to us, he stopped by ours, promising in what I interpreted to be that flippant, have-to-say-something way, that our food would be right out. 

 

A few minutes later, as I tired of the endless football commentary silently playing on the TV screen in the corner, I began to watch the busy activity near the kitchen door and computer/cash register/order station.  A few waiters were looking our way and I subconsciously shrank in my seat, desperately hoping the mostly male staff wasn’t going to sing for my birthday.  I didn’t go on my actual birthday (the actual day I went to Olive Garden, where the wait and host staff gathered around to light a candle on a free cake and sing thanks for coming to Olive Garden), so they really didn’t have to sing.  Who sings before the meal, anyway?  They didn’t come my way, so I straightened back up and pushed aside the bread and butter tray to make room for my expected plate. 

 

Dad commented that ten minutes wasn’t exactly “be right out,” but I made the excuse that the waiter was just saying that.  I mean, we’re talking about steak.  You don’t rush steak. 

 

Wearing a white button-up shirt as opposed to the black t-shirts the waiters wore, a man I assumed was the manager came up to our table.  He explained that he was sorry for the delay in our order, that the wait was unacceptable, that he didn’t know what caused the extra time, and that the inconvenience would be reflected on our bill.  He even offered to bring us something else (more bread or water?) while we waited. 

 

After we thanked him he walked away, and Dad and I looked at each other, puzzled.  In the middle of a lunch rush, we weren’t waiting all that long.  “Did he hear you?” I asked doubtfully.  There was no way he heard Dad’s comment.  They just have really good service. 

 

In a short thereafter our food was brought, my salmon and some of the best mashed potatoes ever and Dad’s steak and sweet potato casserole.  Then a woman came up to our table and introduced herself as Winona, the manager.  She had my coupon for free birthday meal in her hand.  “I’m going to give this back to you,” she said, “because I don’t think you got a good experience out of this free meal.  I’ll sign it on the back, and even though it expires next week, I’ll write that it is good whenever you want to come back.  Today’s ticket is on the house.”  She added that our order had been misplaced, resulting in the extended wait. 

 

We weren’t impatient.  Our food was good.  We didn’t complain.  The service was excellent.  And they gave us both my dad’s steak, his appetizer, and my salmon all for free in addition to another free entrée whenever I want.  It was incredible.  I was all around impressed. 

 

Dad asked for a box (in which he put half a ‘Texas Rose’)and then double-checked that we had properly understood the manager, that there was no bill for the meal.  We got up and left feeling abundantly full and blessed.  Now I just have to figure out how to justify going back to Littleton for my second free birthday lunch. 

 

To God be all glory,

Lisa of Longbourn

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