June 23, 2012
Costco, Burlington WA
Chicken Caesar Salad
A quick lunch at Costco is always appreciated. It is cheap, filling, and usually quite fresh. Actually, their prices are ridiculously low for what they serve. We consider it to be better than most food courts since the food is about the same but it is significantly cheaper or comes in larger portions. Costco does not use its food courts to make profits, so naturally, they make it extremely affordable for their many loyal shoppers.
The Chicken Caesar Salad is probably the best salad deal out of all fast food places. It is huge, almost double the size of the average salad and only half the price at $3.99. The romaine leaves were plentiful. The few cherry tomatoes were very ripe and sweet and thus very fresh and delicious. The shaved parmesan was mediocre, just the regular, processed, grated parmesan that is quite hard in texture. Finally, the grilled chicken, though cold since it was not made to order, was extremely tender. There was no crispy outer layer to be sure, but they were some of the most tender chicken breast strips ever. The photo showed croutons but they were clearly missing from the bowl. I am not sure whether this is just an error or they ran out of croutons. The caesar dressing came in a pretty big container and we only used half between two bowls of salad, though we use less than the average person probably would. It was nicely seasoned and thick.
The traditional Hot Dog was nothing exceptional but certainly did not disappoint. At $1.50, it came with a drink. After watching a documentary about a month ago, I learned that the price has not gone up for years despite all the inflation, which technically means it has become cheaper. Costco actually makes their own hotdog weiners. It was very tender and chewy, and just salty enough. It is the kind of processed meat that I approve of. I love the chew and texture of it and the simplicity of the taste. The bun was more of an artisan hotdog bun rather than the cheap, bulk type. It was slightly moist and was very soft. We added ketchup, mustard, relish, and onions to it, though I usually like to eat mine with just ketchup and relish. This is a great option for a cheap, quick, yet filling meal that is not completely bad for you and still quite delicious when you are hungry.
Finally, the Combo Pizza had pepperoni, Italian sausages, mushrooms, green peppers, and, of course, cheese. Ingredients wise, this pizza was decent. For $1.99, the ingredients were actually plentiful. The mushrooms and peppers were nicely wilted and the pepperoni and sausage pieces were not unbearably salty, nor were they bland. The tomato sauce was decent, with the tartness and just enough sauce to tie the ingredients together. The mozzarella cheese was nicely melted and slightly hardened. My only complaint with the pizza was that it was kept warm for too long and had been out of the over for quite a while. The pizza dough was slightly soggy under the cheese and sauce and the bottom of the dough had turned hard. It was almost impossible to cut or even rip apart, which was quite an inconvenience for us to share the slice. The crust on the edge was wide enough, but I would have liked it to be thicker. It was also kind of stale and hard to eat. I like my pizza dough to be exceptionally chewy and this did not meet my expectations. However, I am sure that it would have been a lot more delicious had we ate it right after it came out of the oven.
Costco certainly offers cheap and on average, quite tasty, food for all the shoppers – not to mention all the tasty samples that they offer around lunch and dinner times throughout the store! The line is usually pretty long and the dining area quite crowded. With the prices and the quality that they offer, it is not the least bit surprising. Personally, I think they do a great job of keeping the costs down. It may not be the most delicious food ever, but they are certainly not making much money, if any, off of their food. The quality is very decent, as most products from Costco are. All in all, I would never mind dining here after shopping.