Sunday, March 23, 2008

Olive Garden 3/22/08.

Last night I went to the new Olive Garden in Christiansburg, VA.

It was my first visit to the newly built restaurant, and once we went inside, I realized just how big it really is. Every table was full, and the place was hoppin. Even though it was packed, the wait was only about 15-20 minutes, which i thought was excellent.

Once we had been seated, a very nice waitress greeted us and offered us a complementary sample of some sort of wine. I of course said hell yes, and for being so free, it was pretty damn good (6.5/10). I ended up getting a glass of Riesling from Chateau Ste. Michelle. I don't know where the hell that is, but it must be from some place good, cause it was fantastic (9/10)

For dinner, i ordered what i normally order, soup and salad. My favorite from Olive Garden. I also noticed that they have dipping sauces for their awesome breadsticks. You can choose alfredo or marinara warmed up. I had the marinara.

After trying the marinara with the breadsticks, it was apparent to me that my idea of marinara is much different from what it actually means. I guess my ideal marinara sauce is more like pizza sauce, because true marinara just isn't my favorite. Needless to say, i'm going to try the alfredo next time.

As for the rest of the meal, the salad was fantastic as usual (9/10), and the Zuppa Toscana soup i had was also pretty damn good (9/10). I also had a taste of my date's Garlic Chicken with broccoli or something... that was also a favorable flavor.

But, out of the whole experience, the best part of the meal was our very nice waitress. She was kind, funny, and very helpful with anything we needed. It is always nice to have a nice meal in a restaurant, but what makes for an above par performance is certainly the service. We felt so taken care of, that i ended up tipping more than i usually do, and i ended up asking for the manager to compliment her on how awesome she was.

I know when I was working with customers at my old job, the best part of the job was being thanked by my manager for being so helpful with customers. So if i can give that to anyone that's good with me, i will usually do so. Happy employees = happy customers.

Overall: (10/10) Everything was to my liking... the hostess, atmosphere, wait staff, food, wine, and company. If every meal was this satisfactory, i wouldn't need to start this blog.

Disclaimer: I feel like it's important to start off this blog with a positive experience because i'm sure there will be many many negative ones (just because i'm a stickler for things like service, and quality of my meal). So stay tuned, and if you have any suggestions as to where i should eat, please leave them in the comments.


GR8UMPS3 said...

Now Marinara, that is a very subjective food to try to critique.

This depends on what you are dipping into the sauce, as the combination of the two tastes can make a marinara really change character.

Dipping bread sticks vs Fried Cheese will cause different outcomes.

Kinda like using different chips to dip into the same Queso!

Anonymous said...

I must say that their house marinara is not much different from what comes out of a can of stewed tomatoes. When put with the breadsticks, it was tasteless, bland, and all together unsatisfying. The breadsticks, though, were... nom nom nom.

MotherOf3Guys said...

Can't wait to hear how the picky eater rates other eating will definitely be able to compare chicken sticks. Now in reference to the marinara, I thought your motto was "if it's not ketcup, it doesn't count!"

Neva said...

I know from your cousin's waitressing experience that kind words are always appreciated from the customers. You do remember the name she gave IHOP, right? ( I HATE OLD PEOPLE)

Avis said...

I didn't know Shannon said that! I would take offense but I'm not a complaining old people. There are a few picky eaters in the family, I believe. I like the Olive Garden salad and breadsticks. Don't get there much anymore since I retired and they moved. Good job of critiquing.