First meal at Olive Garden, Cross County, Yonkers...

I have never eaten at an Olive Garden Italian Kitchen chain restaurant and I was curious. We had finished some shopping at Cross County Shopping Center in Yonkers and were about to leave when we said: ‘Let’s do it.’ It was Sunday, mid afternoon and the place was crowded, we had a brief wait. Once seated our friendly waiter offered us a complementary tasting of two pouring wines which we accepted: a house pinot grigio and a merlot. They were ok. Did not ask if it was a current promo. We ordered two of their standards: Chicken Parmigiana and Lasagna Classico. A big salad bowl was brought to our table with a good Italian house dressing. Soft fresh baked breadsticks also came with the meal.
You know what? We both agreed that our meal was pretty good for what it was, and reasonably priced. I can see why the place was loaded with families. For dessert: a portion of Black Tie Mousse Cake to share. Decadent and also good. A nice surprise…
Caveat: On two occasions the wrong plates were brought to our table, to many apologies.

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OG gets slagged a lot but the food is what a fair amount of America presumes Italian to be and in that sense fills the bill. Ours here in Southern Oregon is very popular, an area with minimal actual Italians.

Exactly…unfortunately for those of us who knows what Italian food really is (refer to my previous comment)

Joliet, cute response. Not meaning to place Olive Garden in a category where it does not belong. Just taking it for what it is…

I haven’t eaten at this location yet but I assume it will be exactly the same as all Olive Gardens. I’m no fan of the chain, and learned long ago not to order pasta there (it is always overcooked), but I actually enjoy going for lunch from time to time. Their salad, though based on iceberg lettuce, is always cold and fresh, and I love their salad dressing. I like the Zuppa Toscana and the AYCE soup and salad lunch is a very good deal at $7-8 (no breadsticks, please - they are just sad). I don’t know if they still offer it, but I used to occasionally order a side of Italian sausage that was quite good and very reasonably priced.

I’m not a fan either. Went to the Eastchester location and it was awful. Bad device, bad food, noisy, rushed…I have to find my write up.

You’re thinking of Fig and Olive

LOL - you’re right! Yes, Olive Garden is worse! Went with my husbands Itlsian aunt who ordered fettuccini Alfredo with her Italian accent and the waitress looked at her like she had two heads. Wow, Olive Garden!

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Italian!! Typed on my phone…

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For a second, I thought Itlsia was a little-known region in Italy.

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I bet you that, to a foreigner, Olive Garden represents what American culinary is about.

A not too bright one I hope :wink:

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It is! It’s known best for its lousy but reasonable food generally served with never ending salad and overly salted bread sticks!!!

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It is not to be a criticism.

Olive Garden is head and shoulder above many other American food institutions, like McDonald and KFC. No one would think Americans eat burgers and fried chicken all day long, but Olive Garden, now that look plausible, right?

Also, an average meal in an average American household is likely taste worse than Olive Garden.

I don’t know about that. You are painting a pretty extreme tapestry.

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I would say yes, this is probably true. My sister is an average cook and I would choose Olive Garden over her cooking any day, if only because at least at OG I could be assured of a decent salad and a choice of at least a couple of decent entrees, cooked by a professional who would at least not overcook the salmon (hopefully).

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LOL - no but Ischia is!

And crazy combos - ziti topped lasagna, etc!

Italian grandmas on Olive Garden :laughing:

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold