Typically I only stop in gas stations for one of three reasons. 1. to get gas. 2. to run into the bathroom on a long road trip and 3. to get a quick snack or drink, or to pick up beer on the way to a last minute shindig.
So when my cohort, JoFi suggested we meet up for dinner at the gas station, I was a bit, well, perplexed. You see, JoFi is someone I would typically refer to as a "foodie," so eating tapas in a gas station doesn't seem like his style. But I also sometimes forget that my cohort also has a taste for the offbeat experience as well.
So we met up in the back of the BP off of 17th street. Now, when you walk into the gas station, it's your typical setup. But when you walk into the back, you see the lights are darkened, and there's an entire wall of wines. Apparently, the restaurant El Carajo (I am always amused by their name) has a little mini restaurant in the back of the station. Complete with the full menu and no indication of such from the outside.
The food was actually pretty decent. I would never have thought I would sit at a full-serve restaurant in the back of a gas station. And I really never thought I would be brave enough to eat ceviche and drink wine, but both were surprisingly good. We also got tortilla and sliced fillet. When you go, you are able to pick a bottle of wine from the wall and they will open it (for an additional charge, but really it doesn't turn out any more expensive than any other normal restaurant. Our service was decent enough and there were a few other tables of people. JoFi explained to me that on the weekends, the gas station is packed to the brim.
He also explained that before it was a restaurant, the back of the BP was a garage, and you can still see where the lifts were, behind the brightly painted faux brick facade.
Would I go again? Of course. It was entertaining, decent food, and just the right amount of cheesy decor. Really, where else will you be able to sit down and eat in a gas station?