My little thing about red-lobster and olive garden

Discussion in 'Restaurant Reviews' started by cook-jetto, Sep 21, 2005.

  1. cook-jetto

    cook-jetto

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    Not really a review tho..

    Sorry if some of you work there..

    But its just not good...im sorry. I have a dam tilapia thing in a dam paper bag that was crap.( I thought so anyway)

    People say its "fancy" but the prices are'nt a concern to me and prolly all of you as well. They try to cook and mix stuff up like some pasta(why would you get it there anyway??) But its horrible. And their sauces..

    SPEAKING OF SAUCES

    Olive garden. is just sick..its not italian at all..and the sauce isn't something to kiss you're fingers about..Its just not that great and they dont really base all their food about italian cuisines.






    It might be fun working there but all you might do is just one thing and a stationery job that all you do is work the..Grill, fryer etc. etc.


    We all can cook better then them..

    Srry if i offended people..
     
  2. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    Olive Garden was created out of market research about what general americans wanted in an "italian style" eatery. All the way down to the rolling chairs. It was never intended to be authentic but to deliver to a certain market segment, and it has done that wel, if poorly to a more food oriented segment.

    Phil
     
  3. chefdan09

    chefdan09

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    amen, most of the time, corporation kitchens suck. i cant find one good one...well when i say good, i mean something id take a significant other to.

    i eat hot pockets and big macs
     
  4. markv

    markv

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    I echo Phatch's comments wholeheartedly.

    We have to remember that the masses of Americans want cheap, convenient food. Moreover, to their unexperienced and ignorant palates, places like the Olive Garden and Red Lobster ARE upscale. And it is these millions of average joes that mass market eateries are targeting for the money. These corporations, like any other, are in it PURELY for the money, not the love of food.

    Of course, as chefs we find the quality of these food factories to be deplorable. But we are in the minority, even with the increased interest in food in this country over the last few decades.

    Mark
     
  5. henry

    henry

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    Your review is funny.

    We go to OG at least once a year, usually in Sept when they have their "unending pasta bowl" for $7.95. It's usually right after school starts. My son, now 18, adores the breadsticks (he can eat about 8 of those things) and getting to choose his pasta and sauces. So in our family it's been a tradition for the last 5 years or so. I do like the crispy eggplant parmigiana, which is hard to find at even some Italian restaurants. Also they will let you have lunch prices on most items in the evening, which is good for people that don't like huge portions. I like their salad with those pepponcini's and tart dressing. However, mostly I like it because it's time well spent with my family around a table with no TVs, video games, and no cleanup afterwards.
     
  6. shaolin bushido

    shaolin bushido

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    Hmm, I gotta check it out then. I'm part of that segment that doesn't necessarily love authentic italian dishes. Perhaps they've altered em just enough that I would like em.
     
  7. auntdot

    auntdot

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    Have to agree with Cook-Jetto, I really do not like either Olive Garden or Red Lobster.

    I love Italian food, but do not hold it against OG if it is not authentic, I only want the grub to taste good. I just don't enjoy the food, it is bland and uninteresting. Will go there under duress (when everyone else wants to go), but always have to search for something to eat.

    Red Lobster is another matter. Have been dragged there a few times, different locations, and found the food poor at best. Their fish may be fresh, as they advertize, but is not cooked well. And the rest of the seafood offerings are to me tasteless and have clearly been long frozen. Have also had poor service which I find surprising because have always found fine service at OG, which is owned by the same corporation (Darden Restaurants). Now I refuse to go there.

    I remember about eleven or twelve years ago, when we lived in Orlando, the Darden company launched a few test Chinese restaurants called, as I remember, China Coast. We walked in one, ordered a drink, looked at the menu, looked at the buffet, drank up, paid and left. It was not that the food was not authentic, we often eat in regular American style Chinese restaurants. It is just that the food looked awful. Later our friends told us they had been there and the food had no taste. The restaurants were closed about a year later.

    It seems the Darden company searches for menus and cooking techniques that are sort of average - food no one will rave about but stuff no one can have too negative a reaction to.

    Would rather go to a restaurant where someone is cooking food they think will interest the diner, no matter whether it is a clam shack, a sandwich shop, a rib joint, or a fine restaurant.

    If I want bland, there are plenty of frozen foods I can buy, heat, and eat in front of the TV.

    Just venting, sorry about the length of this. :D
     
  8. andrew563

    andrew563

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    Once upon a time I worked at an olive garden. Yeah, there food is far from authentic, uninspired, and appeals to the masses. But, they had there systems down! In my stint there, i saw rotten food in there walk ins twice. That was in a year and a half period. They do know how to be efficient.
     
  9. jolly roger

    jolly roger Banned

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    So I assume we're discussing ALL of the chains that fit in this category of cookie cutter, over-hyped, "froo-froo drink" havin', boil-in-the-bag sauce and soup "cookin", teenage server serviced, eateries that hire guys to heat up food that have little experience with food beyond warming up a frozen fish taco in the microwave? Yeah, dude! It's all about money! I can't eat in places like that because I'm jaded much like many others in this forum when it comes to places like that. If I'm forced to go with a group, I'll order some fries and bottled beer and say: "Wow, that bowl of Rasin Bran I had this morning really kept me full all day today. I'm tired. I think I'll just go to bed early tonight." Then on the way home, I stop at the nearest Labamba and order a burito as big as my head and pick up a twelve pack of Tecate and some fresh limes and have feista at mi casa. You want high class quality dining...out? I assume you know what's available in your local and you know it's not gonna be cheap! You know where the corporate executives eat? I got two words for you: table crumber.
     
  10. free rider

    free rider

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    I really dislike eating out. I tolerate Olive Garden on occasion because a particular friend of mine (a very nice, but very average joe) enjoys quantity versus quality and he can eat to his heart's content and I can stick to salad and unending refills of Coca-Cola.

    I have found it increasingly difficult to find non-corporate restaurants.
     
  11. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    Has anyone eaten at Biaggi's? They're a chain which operates mostly in the Midwest. It's quite good... amazingly consistent across the board. Not fancy, Hilton quality at Olive Garden prices.

    They do a fantastic job at hiring and training. The industry could take a page out of, no, steal the whole book.
     
  12. free rider

    free rider

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    "consistent across the board"... by that you mean at each branch of the chain? Each is the same?

    I'm on the odd side of food. One of the best meals I ever had was pupusas at a roadside stand in rural El Salvador. Give me different. ;)

    Agreed that most people like consistency, however, and the ability to find what they're used to wherever they are.
     
  13. crazytatt

    crazytatt

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    O.G. is a thaw and serve monster. there breed of Italian, is just as bastardized as Pizza Huts vision of pizza.

    I try to avoid corperate chains at ALL COSTS, but was draged to a Carrabbas, and honestly, it wasn't that bad. Things were freshly prepared, and the quiality was good. As far as "authentic" Italian, it wasn't, but it was good Italian-like food.

    AS far as red lobster is concerened...people like bargain food, especially seafood. That is the only draw....unless you count the chedder biscuits.
    Besides, being BDA born and breed, and living on a east coast resort town, I would get shot for going into a Red Lobster:D. If it is one thing we have here in V.B.(besides tourists) it is a pletheria of seafood places, some are really good too.
     
  14. diane

    diane

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    I went on a bus tour a couple of years ago with my (23) son. My Baby. As one would expect, there were more americans than any others. Most of them were very predictable. Large people in white shorts, tops and sneakers. We went from France to many other countries on the continent, and got to know each other a little. They were nice, and I liked them. But one of them would not eat the food provided. He insisted on the fast food places, like mcDs and Big Mac. He did not even eat the very well presented meal in Austria. A lovely, light, veal roast with rosti and veg. a touch of jus and the nicest bread roll I have ever enjoyed. Christian, as always, ate half of mine. We were a perfect fit, 1 and a half to 1/2. The waiter was an elderly cherub. He kept slipping things onto Christies plate. A lad so large in these countries can be seen. And in this case sneakily fed. What delight. But he was as skinny coming home as he was before he left. Never mind.

    This is not what I meant to talk about. I do not know why people seek restaurants? like Mcmicks. When there is a local resto. right beside. When we got back to London, we just shambled all over the place. And ate in the strangest places, the american was not with us then, for which I am very pleased. It was the niece that was the bother. She was 18 and very beautiful in a proper way. In any event, we ended up in a Greek resto. Mum was at the till. I remember spreading my arms, exhausted from the Bond Street shopping overload. He asked what was the limit for food. We had a budget, sort of. I told him to order whatever his heart desired. Greek Mum abanded the till and saw to us herself. Christie ate about 10 kgs of various foods. I had their superior soup and a plate of olives. Mum from the till fussed continually. Over Christie, not me. How us mothers love to feed a lad. I have no idea what the bill was, I just paid it. Then we were put into a wonderful London taxi and arrived back at our hotel barely able to move. We slept 12 hours.
     
  15. radical347

    radical347

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    I actually went to Biaggi's once and got sick... sorry...

    Red Lobster may suck but growing up in NE it was the only seafood restaurant within a two hour radius and the ones in the immediate outside radius weren't really much beter.

    And here I'm in seafood heaven, but my date dragged me to Red Lobster last month. Ha!

    I still don't mind that place, I enjoy the kitsch factor if not the food.
     
  16. capecodder

    capecodder

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    I am very happy and proud of my fellow Cape Codders to tell you the Red Lobster lasted only one season in Hyannis, Mass.

    I was flabbergasted that some idiot would even contemplate putting a RL on Cape Cod.

    However, I must admit the dreaded OG is pretty successful.

    O well, one out of two is better than most places.
     
  17. bigdog

    bigdog

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    As a Massachusetts transplant (I was born and bred there, 18.5 years) I concur that Red Lobster is about the worst "seafood" I've had. The only time I've been there over the last few years was twice, and not necessarily by chioce. The food is tolerated at best, but if given options, it ain't one of them.

    As for the Olive Garden, I've noticed changes in their food going more towards the reheat style, and I don't care for it either. Mrs. Big Dog loves their Fettuccini Alfredo, and there is enough there that I enjoy (even though it certainl isn't authentic) that we patronize on occassion.

    I love their salad though. Best part about going to OG is the salad, IMHO.
     
  18. dougiezerts

    dougiezerts

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    It's the same thing with Outback Steakhouse. They have nothing whatsoever to do with Australia! The American owners just thought that would be a good theme for their restaurants.
    That says a lot about our country, doesn't it?
     
  19. boosehound

    boosehound

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    i had the worst time at og in cape cod mass this past winter with my family. i told them i didnt want to eat there but we were on a small vaca and i didnt have a car so og it was. i got pork tenderloin which i wanted MR. she informed me she wasnt sure if they could cook it that way. when i asked why not she said it has to be cooked to 165, i told her she was wrong and thinking of ground meat. so she said ill see what they tell me and get back to you. that stupid no good *********never got back to me. in fact the pork was probably around 200 degrees. i meen it was so over over cooked no amount of sauce would make it good(plus the dish got no sauce). not to mention the vegtables tasted like nothing if they werent charred and burrned from the grill, the only minor saving grace is that the potatoes had sooooo much rosemarry on them along with enough oil to for an entire table to dip bread into, werent that bad. that is once i got them out of the puddle of oil and seasoned them. i hope i never have to go back to another og for the rest of my life.
     
  20. aprilb

    aprilb

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    ...and it was singularly the WORST food I've had in a long time.

    Someone in F&B management forgot to mention hiring someone that knows about preparing Lobster? It was completely inedible. Like trying to chew little chunks of cured silicone.
    I spoke to the manager, nothing, wrote to them and absolutely NOTHING!

    Outback...well...I haven't had a lot of seriously bad experiences with them. The grill cooks seem to all know how to treat their meat. <:rolleyes: > We've traveled a LOT and been to many in several states and it was all pretty good as far as commercial steakhouses go. We've also been comped and whatnot on the rare occasions when something was wrong or they were super busy. The only inconsistency is the bloomin onion. It's hard to do well. I understand that some of the better Outbacks have a prep/fry cook devoted to this one item, and it certainly shows. <considering just about every table orders one>

    Conversely LONESTAR is the Outback equivalent in Australia. Lonestar in Oz rocks. Watching little Aussie waitresses trying to line dance is a hoot! They have a version of 'bloomin onion' but don't call it that...I think it's a cactus something or other but wouldn't swear to it in a court of law. Ironically enough Lonestar is also here and HERE it sucks little bits of burned meat.

    I have never had a good meal at a Lonestar here. After the 3rd try I stopped going. I'd complain, they would get it right the second time. Hmmmm...

    I THINK I went to an OG about 20 years ago but I'm not sure.

    (lets you know how impressed I was)

    :lol:
    April