Skip to comments.Olive Garden tries to woo back customers after falling into a rut
Posted on 01/25/2012 8:25:29 PM PST by ConservativeStatement
With sales slipping, Olive Garden is trying to win back customers who have fallen out of love with the nation's largest Italian chain.
It is a major challenge for Orlando-based Darden Restaurants, which owns Olive Garden, Red Lobster and other brands.
(Excerpt) Read more at chicagotribune.com ...
Sex and City, gag me, and I am female. Gives being female a bad name.
I haven’t set foot in an Olive Garden or Red Lobster in 25 years, ever since i learned their parent company was donating to Planned Parenthood. But I suppose enough people figured out the Olive Garden formula of filling you with salad and bread sticks so you won’t care that they served you a skimpy entree.
Texas dining out is fascinating. In Texas, you can have Mexican food cooked by real Mexicans. And Italian food cooked by real Mexicans. And barbecue cooked by real Mexicans. And Chinese food cooked by real Mexicans. And hamburgers cooked by real Mexicans...
...and Cajun food cooked by real Vietnamese.
You are not only making me hungry, but unbearably homesick!
Speaking of the Milhos family, Nixon's on Whittier Blvd. was a big hangout for me as a high schooler. Then lots of dates at Jack's.
IIRC, a little while back Olive Garden would not allow a local civic oganization to bring in an American flag for their meeting. When the story got out, a lot of finger-pointing ensued between corporate and the restaurant itself.
Further steeled my resolve to not patronize the place.
Either that or it's the egg noodles with ketchup on the plate.
The Cheesecake Factory in Cherry Hill sucks. Very expensive, small portions and lousy service. Went once, never again. You can eat better at Wegman’s Supermarket!
LOL! So true. I never met an Italian that liked Olive Garden.
I sent them a letter when they sucked up to Moochelle and told them that I will never take my family to any of their joints again. Looks as if I’m not alone.
Heh heh heh.
Eye-ties already have enough problems with fellow eye-ties goombahing it up to make the whole ethnicity look clownish. They/we don't need any help from outsiders.
We used to eat at Nixon's drive-in restaurant--owned by the vice president's brother Donald Nixon, whose wife, Clara Jane,is still alive and an active supporter of the Nixon Presidential Library in Yorba Linda, Calif. I liked their oatty melts, and my brother liked their beef burgers. In 1957, Nixon's went out of business and became Whirly's, which featured a huge sign, that could be seen more than a mile away, consisting of neon lights arranged in concentric circles. The site is now an abandoned car dealership.
We used to like to eat at Jack's Salad Bowl, on Whittier Blvd.in West Whittier, and Jack's Beverly, near the old El Mercado mall on Beverly Blvd. and Palm Ave. Both are gone, as is Jack's Uptown, which closed sometime in the 1950's. The remaining Jack's is owned by a Greek restaurateur who owns several other eateries in the Southland.
Since you ate at Nixon's and dated at Jack's, you must have gone to Whittier High School. If you did, you might remember the Swift's ice cream shop across Hadley Street from the school. Although it closed in 1963, the palatial white building, long abandoned, is still there.
Sounds just like the one in Brea, Calif.
Are you familiar with the Homesick Texan, Lisa Fain?”
Thanks for the heads up, will certainly take a look at it. Did happen onto a great restaurant in Colorado that had a “Louisiana” night while we were there. Best blackened redfish, shrimp and dirty rice I’ve ever had and I used to live in Lake Charles, Louisiana, where they do know how to cook Cajun!
My husband graduated in 1953 from Whittier High. I went to Santa Fe High, but actually graduated from Whittier adult as I got married in Nov. of 58 and graduated in 60.
I went home couple of years ago with my college age granddaughter. We had the best time going to all of the old places, Wardman Theater, Presbyterian Hospital where her father was born, the High School, Rose Hills where my parents are buried. Lake Arrowhead where had a cabin, etc.
I don't care what people say about So. California, I still love it.
I’m not into CEO’s playing socialist fascists for the favor of the dictator’s wife, Moochelle. We are a constitutional Republic and any CEO’s who don’t like that, can go out of business as soon as possible.
Exactly what I was thinking. Once Darden became part of the Mooshelle food police, I stopped going.
Olive Garden: If youre here, youre family should be changed to If youre here, youre not Italian.
LOL. I tell this story whenever the Olive Garden comes up. I’m pretty spoiled when it comes to Italian food, eating out in NY and NJ, at Italian people’s homes, etc.
A long time ago, I saw this brand new Italian restaurant (Olive Garden)and thought I would take the girlfriend there. Everything was bottom of the barrel “Italian” food, the Italians I know would rather chop their hands off then serve that food to guests, DISGRACIADA!
I figured they would close down pretty quick and was shocked that someone would open an Italian restaurant in NJ and have no idea how to make Italian food. It’s awful, kind of like I have no idea Domino’s can make a living in this area when they are literally surrounded by hundreds of real pizzerias, some who make pizza to die for. I love Dominos new marketing campaign, “Our food used to really suck”, no kidding Dominos, I’ve been saying that about your “food” for 20 something years.
Get water instead
Olive Garden must have been the restaurant Henry Hill was referring to at the end of Goodfellas: “I ordered spaghetti with marinara sauce and I got egg noodles and ketchup.”
Their food stinks, imho.
That is exactly why my family will never go there again.
1. they dissed the american flag.
2. They went into political bed with mooshel obama.
3. The parent company keeps making political blunders assuming people have left wing nutjob preferences.
They reap what they sow.
They tell america go away, americans closed their wallets and went away.
I’ll go back when Veal Parmagian is back on the menu.
We quit going to Olive Garden three years ago after getting two horrible pizzas in a row and some lousy lasagna. Also, their breadsticks, which I used to like, became tasteless and stale.
Maybe that’s because I ordered takeout, and they figure they
can unload yesterday’s leftover crap on takeout customers.
looks like we have a Dixie Chix situation on our hands.
Only this time we have multiple chains.
BTW late Gov Lawton Chiles’ family had the exclusive francise on red lobster in FL.
So success will be to REDIRECT business to a chain that supports conservative causes and does NOT cave to the commiecare obamanomics.
According to whitehouseforsale.org, the CEO of Darden Group/Olive Garden, Clarence Otis Jr., donated $28,500 to Obama’s campaign in 2008.
The Olive Garden serves its patrons bread, pasta, and polyunsaturated oils, all of which shorten their lives.
Politically correct dining is Pretty Quick dying.
Lawmaker delays hearing on Darden tax-break bill
March 30, 2011|By Jason Garcia, Orlando Sentinel
TALLAHASSEE A hearing on a bill that would give Darden Restaurants a tax break of as much as $5 million a year was postponed Wednesday after the sponsor asked for more time to address recent questions about the legislation.
Darden Restaurants to build solar panels
Favored status? That could never happen, could it?
FWIW, lots of Lebanese restaurants going up all over the place here..........
I hate to state the obvious, but their food isn’t really that good.
Clarence Otis Jr., CEO of Darden Restaurants Inc.
That is it. They should have stuck with serving food instead of politics.
Sorry to hear about your illness. Perhaps what I write below will generate more memories.
I grew up in West Whittier and College Hills, attended Walter F. Dexter Junior High School and Whittier High.
We were regular customers at the Wardman Theater as well as the Roxy Theater downtown, the Sundown Drive-in Theater on Washington, and the palatial Whittier Theater on Whittier Blvd. where Sam Cohen, the father of the neutron bomb, used to like to go when he was growing up in Boyle Heights.
For Mexican food, we went to Carillo's in Whittier and the Mt. Baldy in Pico Rivera, which resembled Mt. Baldy. Sometimes we would get over to El Poche in San Gabriel, which was renowned throughout the region. All of these eateries are long gone, but Chris & Pitt's barbecue restaurant in West Whittier, which opened about 60 years ago, is still in business as is Rubi's, a joint that serves excellent burgers, Mexican food and ice cream cones dipped in chocolate sauce, which has been there since the early 1960's.
We shopped at the Box Market on Whittier Blvd., whose owner's name was Box, and at the Buy Fair market, which changed its name every few years, a few blocks to the west. The best place to get meat was the Model Market on Beverly Blvd. For a while, Don Nixon ran Nixon's Market on Whittier Blvd. about a block from his where better-known brother Richard once lived. All of these stores are long gone, but I often shop at the Trader Joe's, located in the old Alpha Beta market in East Whittier.
When we needed a haircut, we went to a barber named Luigi, who was an immigrant from Tuscany and had a shop in a long-gone strip mall on Whittier Blvd.
I also remember some disasters--the fires that destroyed the Whittier News in 1958, Mifflin's Market in 1970, the Roxy Theater in 1971, and the William Penn Hotel in 1979. In 1967, a brush fire scorched 2,000 acres in the Whittier Hills. but the worst disaster to hit the community was the Whittier earthquake of 1987.
The Whittier area may have changed considerably,but it's still a nice place to live.
It is always suprising to see the very large older people who are there dining. (or at least were when I stopped going)
Obvious health problems and obviously eating bad.
BTW do they “recycle” breadsticks which are not used?
Ya know I live in the BBQ capitol of the world, Chris and Pitts will always be my favorite. As long as my parents were alive, they would send us C&P BBQ sauce.
Prayers lifting my FRiend.
May God bless and keep you.
Thanks! Pulmonary Fibrosis
My wife and I were looking for a late lunch a couple of years ago and wandered into a Red Lobster. We were told that it would be a 15 to 20 minute wait and that we could wait in the bar. I looked in the dining room and there was precisely one occupied table. We turned and walked out and haven’t darkened their door again.
Why would anyone go to an Italian restaurant that is really nothing more than fast food with a menu created by chefs sitting next to the beancounters at corporate headquarters in some faraway location? The mass produced food is mostly prepared from canned or frozen pre-processed ingredients and made deliberately bland so as not to offend the culinary challenged who seem to equate quality with quantity.
For every Olive Garden in my area there are dozens of real Italian restaurants serving real Italian food made fresh from whole, unprocessed ingredients based upon recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation (although not necessarily written down). Some of these places are fine dining, but many are small, inexpensive family places that can turn out excellent Itallian food for same or lower price than Olive Garden.
The one i went to was child size portions too. see my post 29
Seriously, we have a wonderful little Mom and Pop Italian Restaurant not far from where I work. The food is fabulous and much more reasonable than Oliver Garden.
Every time I go in, I tell the owner that she should give me some of their menus and let me go hand them out to the people in line at Olive Garden.
She just laughs and gives me an extra big helping of whatever I order.