Chili’s Grill & Bar | 6652 Macedonia Commons Blvd. | Macedonia, OH
A couple weeks ago, my wife and I were having a rough Saturday. Tiffany was stressed out about her job. Me on the other hand … I was mad. For the second straight year, I’d been derailed by the city of Parma—road construction destroyed the tires (and wheels) on my car. As I sat sulking at Discount Tire in Macedonia, Tiffany came up with a solution to our problems—a nice Saturday night dinner. The only problem … Macedonia isn’t known for it’s thriving independent restaurant scene. What is it known for, you ask? Chain stores, and lots of them. Fortunately, one of Tiffany’s favorite restaurants is a chain. Even better, it’s .8 miles away from Discount Tire. The name of this magical place … Chili’s.
Locally, Chili’s is in Macedonia, Copley, North Olmsted and at Cleveland State. Believe it or not, they have over 1,500 locations worldwide—who knew? Employing a Southwestern-style motif, the restaurant features Tex-Mex and American food, with a focus on burgers, ribs and fajitas.
I know it’s trendy to knock chain restaurants. Heck, I do it myself. In many cases, it’s well-deserved. However, I must say that Chili’s—at least on this night—was solid. And if our Saturday visit was any indication, I’m not the only one who thinks so. Apparently, Chili’s is the Marble Room of Macedonia, because there wasn’t a table to be had. The hostess quoted us a wait time of 45 minutes. Armed with that knowledge, I staked out openings at the bar. Once two seats became available, Tiffany and I pounced like our dog Biscuit when we give him ice cream.
I kicked off the festivities with a delightful Christmas beer from Mucky Duck Brewing Company. Side note: if anyone spots this in stores, message me on Twitter or Instagram. I’ve had no luck tracking it down. Next, we ordered our dinner. Tiffany chose the classic nachos while I ordered honey chipotle crispers and waffles.
Truth be told, I wasn’t expecting the dishes to be as good as they were. We’ve all been places where the nachos were uneven—some chips had lots of toppings while others were empty or barely had any at all. Not so at Chili’s. Each chip contained impressive amounts of cheese, beans, jalapenos and beef. Moreover, the accompaniments—lettuce, sour cream, guacamole and pico de gallo—were fresh and flavorful. My chipotle crispers and waffles were tremendous … so much so that I could taste all 2,600 calories of them. Chicken, bacon, jalapenos, ancho-chile ranch, syrup and fluffy Belgian waffles worked well together—not too sweet and not too spicy—and provided the perfect combination of savory. The side of fries was tasty, but totally unnecessary. Side note #2: this body is no accident.
If you know Tiffany, you know dessert is an important part of any day. It was only natural, then, that she ordered molten chocolate cake to take home. She made the right call. Accompanied by an array of sauces and ice cream, the cake was light, moist and rich in flavor. This dessert never had a chance … we finished it in about four bites.
If there’s anything about our experience to criticize, it would be the long wait times for our food (both dinner and dessert). That said, it was made tolerable by quality service. Two bartenders consistently checked on us, refilled our beverages and provided updates on the status of our orders.
I can’t believe it, but, based on our visit, I’m recommending a chain restaurant. Chili’s provided good value, service and food. I’m open to visiting again. Wouldn’t you know, it looks like it’ll be sooner than later—Discount Tire put the wrong tires on my car. See you in Macedonia. Cheers!