I'm excited about finding Compadres here in Greenville. Look, I'm no food snob, but I'm tired of every Mexican restaurant becoming a cut-and-paste of one another. Monterrey's, Coronas, etc. are basically the same restaurant as one another when it comes down to quality and taste. Why do both have a #2 Speedy or what-not if they're different restaurants?
Compadres, however, has raised the bar. You can get some unique foods served fresh and tasty. Again, I'm not banging on the other ones I mentioned ... I like eating there at times as well. I just wanted something new and different ... something that tasted what I imagined would be authentic (because I may not know the true authenticism of that culture's food). This place nails it.
Yes, they do make their guacamole fresh and as you walk in. Literally. There's a member of the staff busting up the ingredients at the front entrance. Both times I've been (Friday nights), the place has been jammed full of people. It is in a popular "restaurant row" near Cherrydale, so parking is difficult to find. I feel like I always got the last available space in the whole place. Being able to load a place out in the Land of Restaurants and Overweight Folks (guilty as charged), it's a good sign when a restaurant on a Friday night is busting at the seams.
I don't recall exactly what I ordered, but everything was always one of the best tasting Mexican foods I've ever tasted.
One sort-of gripe: the first time I went, I had an amazing waitress who always appeared at the right time, and was very helpful. The second time I went, it took about 10 minutes to see our waitress and the rest of experience was similar in disappointment. Look, I get the plight of waitstaff ... I assumed that there must have been some deficiency in the restaurant that was causing this; however, I did not see many other tables receiving similar, broken-down service. Our waitress seemed very forgetful and careless, and she dropped the "Jo-Jo called in sick" excuse at the end of the meal as she was dropping our check. The point is, either this place goes on lockdown when one waiter goes missing or someone nearly cost the place a potential repeat customer. Again, I'm not a snob that demands superhuman service to be happy ... but if the service is bad enough that I dock your tip (that's an earned income, you know), dock the restaurant a "circle", and mention it in a review, then it's a potential deal breaker. And while I'm just one man with one opinion, if enough folks form the same opinions and create your reputation, then you'll end up in the Greenville Restaurant Graveyard, where so many others have gone (anyone up for Brioso @ Cherrydale? Oops? Too soon?). Seriously, though, service at a restaurant is nearly as paramount as the quality of food. When you depend solely on the staff to provide what you came there for, and they blow it bigtime, you have nothing on which to fall back. If I'd received this service the first time I went in, this would be a one-circle review, and I'd never have darkened their doorstep again.
Overall, I say go give this restaurant a shot. The chances are great that you will be extremely pleased with your visit and not experience the problem I had. You will fall in love with the food and keep coming back for more. This will be your new favorite Mexican restaurant, and you will think that I was just being picky about my one bad visit.