Self-described non-partier Pete Wells apparently really, really loved Señor Frogs. The Times critic reviewed the Times Square location of the chain that's known more for its Caribbean spring break partying than its food on Tuesday, and while Wells didn't consider it a good restaurant by conventional standards, the whole schtick of the place got to him. Señor Frog's dancing, singing, "Frogasms," and chili dogs on skateboards all delighted the critic, who writes that his own most memorable spring break "was whiled away in my room reading "The Sorrows of Young Werther" in German." "I had more fun at Señor Frog’s than at almost any other restaurant that has opened in the last few years," Wells writes.
True, it’s a particular kind of fun: compulsory hilarity, scheduled spontaneity, a scripted theater of the inane with random outbreaks of mediocre Tex-Mex. Señor Frog’s brand of fun is so mindless that it’s embarrassing to give in to at first, but eventually everybody I brought there did give in, maybe because we’re all so desperate to let go a little bit.
In the 1980s and ’90s it was a cliché to say restaurants had become theater. Hardly anyone says that now, because it’s not true anymore. A few chefs and restaurateurs still understand that people go out to have a good time; Daniel Humm would serve a chili dog on a skateboard if he had thought of it first. But too many restaurants have become church without the singing and costumes.
Wells also details his exploits at the restaurant, including joining a conga line, wearing a balloon crown, and pretending it was a guest's birthday to hear the servers break out into Froggy song. He also makes a dick joke about the chain's palm tree-shaped margarita cups. While a bunch of his food was either mediocre or didn't show up at all, Wells still gave the place a "fair" rating — and an enthusiastic endorsement of the servers' willingness to do the Cha Cha Slide. Read the full review here.