Olive Garden

Star Half star Empty star Empty star Empty star
1.6 out of 5, based on 21 ratings and
77 reviews & complaints.

Most Popular | Newest | More Options >
More filter options:
A depressing day in Kingston
Posted by on
My friend suggested the Olive Garden in Kingston for lunch and never having had the experience I went along with the suggestion. The restaurant looks like a Lionel train set version of a restaurant with
all the accessories that make it ' Family Dining' ( don't you just love that ? ) It is actually a cover up for its faults. The bread sticks that they are so proud of are so salty it makes your face itch. The salad was passable and the service friendly. When they came around with a bottle of Bordeaux cradled in the crook of the servers arm I nearly fell off my chair. I ordered a diet coke instead which was 7/8ths water from the Hudson River. The scallop and shrimp pasta was so salty a slimey as to make it inedible but a Hostess did come by to ask..' how is it so far ? '
as if to imply something terrible is about to take place.. the bill came to the standard $45 which seems to be the luck number these days.
     
Read 19 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
Inat on 2011-01-09:
yeah, OG is salty food - most slow fast food joints overly salt their food to mask the poor attempt at culinary prowress
Skye on 2011-01-09:
What does this photo, of Al Jolson 1930, have to do with your review?
trmn8r on 2011-01-09:
I know there are people here who eat at OG, but I agree with the OP. The bread sticks are loaded with not only salt but fat. If you squeeze them, I swear oil comes out.

I saw a hilarious stand-up routine today on tv done by an Italian commedian, making fun of the OG commercials in which Italians go to eat at Olive Garden.
Anonymous on 2011-01-09:
I've eaten at OG once and that was enough. I wasn't impressed by any of the food, not even the breadsticks. I can make better Italian food myself
Skye on 2011-01-09:
Oh well, I guess everyone else knows why the op posted this 1930 Al Jolson photo, except ME!
Anonymous on 2011-01-09:
I don't know why either, Skye
trmn8r on 2011-01-09:
OK, Skye, I'll admit it I don't know. And I went and did a little research on AJ, but it didn't help. So don't feel bad.
jktshff1 on 2011-01-09:
Please pick the Kingston location you are referring to. Without that, how are we to know which one to avoid?
Places
[edit] Australia

* Kingston, Australian Capital Territory, suburb of Canberra
* Kingston, Norfolk Island, capital of the territory
* Kingston, Queensland, suburb of Logan City
* Kingston SE, South Australia, often referred to simply as Kingston
* Kingston-On-Murray, South Australia
* Kingston, Tasmania, town south of Hobart
* Kingston, Victoria, town near Creswick
* City of Kingston, local government area
* Division of Kingston, federal electoral district

[edit] Canada

* Kingston, New Brunswick
* Kingston, Nova Scotia
* Kingston, Ontario, largest city of this name in Canada

[edit] Jamaica

* Kingston, Jamaica, capital of Jamaica

[edit] New Zealand

* Kingston, New Zealand, small town at the southernmost end of Lake Wakatipu

[edit] United Kingdom
[edit] England

* Kingston, Cambridgeshire
* Kingston, Devon
* Kingston, Isle of Wight
* Kingston, Kent
* Kingston, Hampshire
* Kingston, Purbeck, Dorset
* Kingston, North Dorset
* Kingston by Ferring, West Sussex
* Kingston by Sea, West Sussex
* Kingston near Lewes, East Sussex
* Kingston on Soar, Nottinghamshire
* Kingston upon Hull, East Riding of Yorkshire
* Kingston upon Thames, Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames, Greater London
* Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames, Greater London

[edit] Scotland

* Kingston, East Lothian
* Kingston, Moray

[edit] United States

* Kingston, California, in Kings County
* Kingston, Fresno County, California
* Kingston, Georgia
* Kingston, Illinois
* Kingston, Louisiana
* Kingston, Maryland
* Kingston, Massachusetts
* Kingston, Michigan
* Kingston, Minnesota
* Kingston, Missouri
* Kingston, New Hampshire
* Kingston, New Jersey
* Kingston, New York, original capital of the state of New York
* Kingston, Ohio
* Kingston, Oklahoma
* Kingston, Pennsylvania
* Kingston, Rhode Island
o Kingston Railroad Station (Rhode Island)
* Kingston, Tennessee
* Kingston, Texas
* Kingston, Utah
* Kingston, Washington
Skye on 2011-01-09:
And here I thought, they were referring to Kingston, New York.

Thanks jkt for all the Kingston locations. Hopefully the op will come back and let us know which location they are referring to!
Anonymous on 2011-01-09:
Dang there's a lot of places called Kingston.
MRM on 2011-01-09:
The Hudson River should give us a clue of the location.
MRM on 2011-01-09:
I would like to wager on Kingston, NY. Bada boom bada Bing!
jktshff1 on 2011-01-09:
I just thought it was interesting and a heads up. A poster may know, but not everybody. Did not know there were that many.
Obsfucation on 2011-01-09:
Actually, I'm pretty sure that the diet coke was more like 98% water. What else would it be?
Skye on 2011-01-09:
Lots of people do not bother posting the location of their complaints. I guess for privacy reasons, but it will not help anyone who may live in their area, to have a heads up about a place.
trmn8r on 2011-01-09:
Hudson River = Kingston, NY for us tri-staters. I drove past it every few weeks for 7 years on the turnpike.

My personal alternate would have been Kingston Jamaica. Jamaica, mahn. Can you imagine an Olive Garden in Jamaica?
Skye on 2011-01-09:
Now when you said Jamaica, my first thought was Queens, (NEW YORK).
trmn8r on 2011-01-09:
I bet they have OGs there, but not Kingston. Yah mahn.
Anonymous on 2011-01-09:
The only time I go to Olive garden is for the unlimited soup salad and breadsticks lunch....also the never-ending pasta is good too...
Close commentsAdd reply
Olive Garden Come To Princeton, WV!
Posted by on
6th grader Olive Garden Come to Princeton, WV!

Dear Olive Garden,
We here in Princeton, WV need an Olive Garden. One reason is if you come to Princeton, WV, you would get a lot of business. There are a couple more reasons why we need an Olive Garden.

The first reason why we need an Olive Garden in Princeton is because it would be good for both of us. What I mean when I say for the both of us is because you would get more business and money and we would have a lovely Italian restaurant. Not just that but you would be able to get more workers because a lot of people especially me, love to cook, be a server, or any job you decide to give us to do. For that reason, and others, because some of us are getting fired from our job people would be lining up just to work at your restaurant. In addition, we all know that a restaurant’s goal is to have more than one in a state or sometimes within a country so if you come not only would you have one in Christiansburg, WV, two in Charleston, WV, and one in Roanoke, VA and many more I don‘t even know about. My point is that it would promote your business and you would be able to brag that you have 6 Olive Gardens in WV. Besides Princeton is a growing and we are on the interstate so you would make business from tired, hungry travelers.

Second, we need an Olive Garden because we all have to drive all the way to Christiansburg just to enjoy your amazing food. Almost all of us here in Princeton, WV love Italian food but we have to drive a long time just to get there so we would come even more often if you would come to Princeton, WV. Also, the gas prices are going up and we are starting to not be able to drive all the way to Christiansburg but if you come here we will be spending the money that we had to on gas at your restaurant. In addition, don’t forget that some elderly people love Italian food but they cannot get to Christiansburg they can barely get around town so you would get more business and they would probably take advantage of your awesome addition where people can order and take there food home.

Finally, we need an Olive Garden because you have healthy food. For example you know the salad that you bring before our main dish comes well that’s healthy and delicious and since you have healthy food and a lot of us try to eat healthy we would eat here more often as the second paragraph brought out if you were closer because we need delicious healthy restaurants and you could be one of them. Also, your healthy food is pretty cheap so we spend money on delicious cheap food but its so far away so if you come some might even come once or twice a week.

In Conclusion, we in Princeton, WV need an Olive Garden because it would be good for both of us we have to drive all the way to Christiansburg, and you have healthy food. Not only would you get more business but we all would greatly appreciate it and spend money just to eat your awesome food! Don’t forget that if you come to Princeton, WV, you will not regret it! Remember Princeton, WV’s population is 4,500 so if you come you might be seeing that many people come to your restaurant!

Sincerely,
a hungry 6th grader

P.S. You won’t regret it! Remember if you come you will get business, money and workers!

P. P.S Please write back.




     
Read 8 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
trmn8r on 2011-02-10:
Great letter. I think it would be marvelous, and an apparently selfless act on our part, to disassemble and ship you our local Olive Garden. We would find a way to do without it, and it would improve your standard of living.
Anonymous on 2011-02-10:
You can have the OG near me, I'm looking for real Italian food.
localgod on 2011-02-10:
What a wonderful, well thought out, and well written letter. I hope it falls into Olive Garden's hands and they reward the OP with their great food and wonderful atmosphere.
Anonymous on 2011-02-10:
Best Italian food I've had was in Bonita, CA. OG is gross
jktshff1 on 2011-02-10:
Well put
clutzycook on 2011-02-10:
Isn't OG franchised?
Venice09 on 2011-02-11:
You are a very convincing (and hungry!) 6th grader. This is a very persuasive plea, and I hope you receive a response and a brand new Olive Garden restaurant!
Alain on 2011-02-11:
I enjoyed your letter and I hope Olive Garden does, as well.
Close commentsAdd reply
No Common Sense
Posted by on
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA -- Date of Incident: 10/17/2010
Time of Incident: around 10 pm to 10:05 pm

Location: Olive Garden restaurant on
1545 Flamingo Road
Las Vegas, NV 89119
702-735-0082

On the night of 10/17/2010, our party of six arrived at Olive Garden restaurant around 9:20 PM. There were very few people in their waiting area and the Hostess came and talk to our group at least 3 times to let us know that they have not forgotten about us and they are preparing our table. We asked them if we can go ahead and order our food even before we got seated, and the Hostess proceeded to take our order which was great. Our party of six (we are all Filipinos) was the only one in their waiting area and finally we got seated after 15 minutes. We got our main entrée and appetizer served in our table after another 20 minutes. Our waiter was a gentleman who is either Hawaiian or Asian descent. We just now got our hot food and proceeded to eat. My sister in Law (Suzette) now decided she needed to get a sweater in the car because she was cold. It was taking awhile for her to come back and my other sister in Law (Amalia) received a call from Suzette stating that she is outside the front entrance of the restaurant and the staff would not let her back in. Amalia went to the front entrance to talk to the staff and she returned angry because they will not let her sister back in. Amalia's boyfriend also went to the front entrance to talk to the staff and he also came back angry because they would not allow Suzette back in. I finally went to the front to talk to the General Manager and hostesses. The Hostess kept apologizing to me. The General Manager proceeded to tell me that he cannot let Suzette back in because it's Olive Garden's policy that they do not let anyone in after 10 PM for employee safety. I tried to reason to the manager that she did not know this but all he kept saying was its for employee safety and that if he lets her in then he would have to shut down the whole restaurant. He said this with such an uncaring attitude.

I would like to make a comment regarding Employee Safety. Are Olive Garden employees safer at 8pm, 9pm, 9:30pm, 10pm, 10:01pm etc… I don't remember anyone asking me whether I was carrying a weapon on me when I walked in the restaurant—how do they know that they were safe? Are the Olive Garden employees walked to their car after they get off from work for safety or is the INSIDE of the restaurant considered the "HOLY GROUND"! I have eaten in a lot of Olive Garden restaurants even in different states and not once have I seen security in the premises.

The General Manager never once mentioned Customer Safety—which makes it more apparent that Customer Safety is not important to Olive Garden!

He also told me that I shouldn't be rude to him—I guess locking someone outside the restaurant while her hot food was waiting on the table WAS NOT RUDE! I was so distraught—I told the manager that Olive Garden wasted my time to have dinner with my family that they should pay me for coming to Olive Garden instead of me paying them. I told the manager that I want all the food on the table packed and I am not paying for a single penny. I saw one of the Hostess whispered something to our waiter. Apparently the manager OK'd it because our waiter packed up all our food. We all left the restaurant very upset, distraught, humiliated, and emotionally stressed.

I can't believe that this is Olive Garden's policy? Where is the Safety of the Consumer—a young lady locked outside the door of the restaurant by herself at night-- it was also misting outside. My 10 yo daughter was with us. What if I had asked her to get something in the car—then this young girl would also be locked outside the door due to employee safety. What if I forgot my wallet in the car? I don't think Olive Garden will have a problem then of me stepping out of the restaurant to get my wallet so I can pay them. Oh but I can't go back in the restaurant to pay due to employee safety. Wow --- what a novel idea to get free meals at Olive Garden (wouldn't the WWW love to know about this!) Now--maybe you're seeing how stupid this policy is. It's unbelievable that this is happening in this century and this country. I served over 8 years active duty Air Force and several years as a reservist and I have never had this emotional trauma of disrespect, injustice, stupidity, and uncaring attitude towards another fellow human being.

It is false advertisement for Olive Garden to promote the concept of Family Dining — How can you have Family dining when your family member is locked out of the restaurant in the parking lot while her hot food is on the table!

Other details of this incident: I recorded every detail right outside the restaurant parking lot in my Iphone because I don't want to forget any specific detail of what happened and I want an accurate description of the incident. Suzette states that as she was going out of the door—there were other customers that was also going out of the door. Suzette states that one of the Hostess asked her if she is done with her dinner and she said "No—I'm not done, I just have to get something out of the car" then she stepped outside the door. No one stopped her nor told her of the restaurant policy. They knew we just got our food, otherwise, why would they bother to ask her that question. If this is a strict policy – they should have told us while we were sitting in the waiting area for 15 minutes since they know we are late customers and there is a possibility that one of us would step outside the door after 10 PM. If this is a strict policy - why is the Manager now standing by the door of the restaurant to make sure that I do not let Suzette in but he didn't bother stopping her as she was going out. Was he just waiting to whip out his Olive Garden Policy and enforce his power! He must get a kick out of this.

Now you might say, what is the big deal--it's only food. Well, put yourself in this situation. You go to Olive Garden to have a nice dinner with your family and your starving because it is already late at night-- then your sister, your mother, your brother, your daughter/son, or yourself steps out door at 10:01 pm to smoke or get something in the car, well, guess what-- YOU'RE SCREWED!


Where is Consumer’s Rights?

Olive Garden lets me order my food but I can’t eat it?

Olive Garden enforces a policy but not inform customers about it!

Olive Garden only cares about employee safety—but totally ignores Customer Safety!

Olive Garden promotes Family Dining BUT without your Family!



What went wrong? No Common Sense!!!



If you don’t have one, then you shouldn’t manage anything!!!

You should not be a Manager. Otherwise—just put a robot by the door to spit out Policies and see how many customers comes back for more.

It is time to wake up Olive Garden – Your Garden needs to grow Common Sense!

Very Peeved Ex-Customer!

     
Read 99 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
Sounds like they just wanted you out of there since they were closing.
clutzycook on 2010-10-21:
What does your nationality or the nationality of your server have to do with anything?
werelucky on 2010-10-21:
If it was Olive Garden's policy then the managers hands are tied to enforce it. No matter how stupid the policy may be, they still have to follow it. God forbid something were to happen with the manager violating policy and the lawyers would have a field day, and the manager would be out of a job and possibly open to lawsuits or even jail.

There was an incident outside Philly a few years back where employee were shot after hours. I guess near closing time anywhere you should ask the Hostess if you can get back in once you leave. I hope you left your waitperson a nice tip.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
This is one of those complaints where I want to hear the other side of the storey because something just doesn't seem right. I think the OP is only telling the parts she wants us to hear.
momsey on 2010-10-21:
clutzy, that's my question. I kept expecting it to come into play at all, and it didn't.

The Hostess probably either didn't think about the fact that your sister-in-law wouldn't be able to get back in or didn't have a chance to say so.

I'm sure the manager would have loved to have bent a rule for you, but if he did, and something happened, that would have been terrible.

I think this almost should be a compliment, since you got 6 meals plus appetizers completely free! They couldn't break their rules, and they were apologetic about it.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
There was a complaint JUST LIKE this. I think it was Olive Garden in PA somewhere.
yoke on 2010-10-21:
Did you really demand your food be packed up to take home and tell the manager you will not be paying for it. You are lucky they did not call the police.
I don't blame the manager at OG. For all he knows she went out to the car and got a weapon or there were other people waiting outside with her to rob the place.
tnchuck100 on 2010-10-21:
Just cut to the chase: This absolutely was a blatant case of total lack of common sense. There is NO explanation that can justify Olive Garden's behavior.
Ytropious on 2010-10-21:
I know it sounds like "common sense" to let her back in, but not if he gets fired for it. How does he know you aren't a test sent by the regional manager? If it's corporate policy and he could get severely punished or fired for it, then yeah I'd leave her outside too. Sounds cruel but when it's my job vs your dinner, my job will win. We just don't know. Also your nationality and service in the air force has 0 to do with this complaint. You were not there when Suzette was leaving. I bet she was walking fast like most people, there would be no time to stop her after the fact and tell her not to leave.
tnchuck100 on 2010-10-21:
Man, the lack of common sense today is epidemic. More and more people exhibit the trait every day.

This was not a new, unknown person trying to gain access. It was an EXISTING customer.
Ytropious on 2010-10-21:
Who went outside, and could possibly have gotten a gun from their car. Dispute that fact. Existing customer does not mean safe customer.
tnchuck100 on 2010-10-21:
OK, while the manager is preoccupied with the customer at the front door and the other two people trying to help her get back in the REAL perpetrators, who are already inside, now pull their weapons and take over the place.

Absurd? Absolutely! Just as absurd as what took place. God, help us, we need more people with some common sense among us.
FlShopper on 2010-10-21:
At the very least, the staff who saw the person exiting the restaurant should have informed her that once she left she would not be allowed back in.
Ytropious on 2010-10-21:
Well then you need corporate policies with "common sense". Problem with that is, it entails profiling people. Oh it's OK to let a dainty woman back in the store, but the guy with the beard and the biker vest? Yeah leave him out. If the policy says to the manager "don't let ANYONE back in, no exceptions" then that is where his power lies. He can override that decision for the OP's benefit, perhaps at the expense of his job. Would YOU use "common sense" at the possible expense of your job? I sure wouldn't. Not worth the risk to me.
yoke on 2010-10-21:
Since we are hearing from someone who was sitting away from the door when the guest left we do not know if the guest was told that once she left she could not get back in. We are only hearing what the OP wants us to know. There was a lot more than went on. To bad we could not get the other side of the story.
Ytropious on 2010-10-21:
As I already pointed out yoke, I agree. The OP was not there when Suzette left. She may have been asked the question of if she was done as she was half out the door. By the time the Hostess could reply, it's likely she was already gone out the door.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
This one takes the cake. Agree with Chuck absolutely no common sense. I have to wonder does Olive Garden think so poorly of their general managers they don't allow them the latitude to make even the simplistic of management decisions. Truly sad...truly stupid... truly bizarre any rational person would defend OG on this one.

ARGHHHH... THE STUPID.. IT BURNS
tnchuck100 on 2010-10-21:
Policy: Do not physically touch any customer.

Given: Employee is First Aid Certified

Scenario: Customer is choking and needs help.

Result: Customer must die. Policy states the customer cannot be touched. Common sense not permitted.

Side effect: Lawyers crawl out of the woodwork to sue the company for gross negligence.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
Contact corporate cc7070. That was just wrong.
SteveWiginowski on 2010-10-21:
I agree that it's common sense to buy food and to pay for it. It's very nice that they let you take the food home without paying for it. That sounds like a good resolution. Not the best for the scenario, but a free meal for 6 people is pretty good.
shootingstar1284 on 2010-10-21:
I don't know... Olive Garden closes at 10 PM on a Sunday. I don't know of any establishment that allows customers in once it's past business hours. I don't think anyone is under the impression that someone inside the restaurant could be dangerous, but the policy is in place so that the employees are not put in extra danger. Closing time seems like a pretty good time to try to rob a place, no? Few to no customers, money is being moved around, lights are probably dimmed.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
I understand them not letting any new customers in past closing time but if she was a part of a party that had already ordered, they should have let her return and eat her food. The waiter could have verified if she was a part of the original party or not. This policy is ridiculous.
RestaurantGuy on 2010-10-21:
I will give some insight from the restaurants side here. I have a strict policy also that no one is allowed in or back in after the doors are closed at night. Reason for this is safety of my employees and my guests. 3 years ago the restaurant 2 down from mine was robbed and an employee shot as a guest was entering the restaurant after close because they had to get something from their car. At closing time there are only a handfull of employees and guests in the restaurant so it is a prime time for a robbery
tnchuck100 on 2010-10-21:
If someone is hell-bent on robbing you this "policy" will be no obstacle to them at all.
Ytropious on 2010-10-21:
Good stuff RG. It makes perfect sense, and there's no "common sense" when it comes to protecting yourself from robberies. Point is, OG has no way of knowing if this woman really went to her car for honest reasons, or to get a gun. The ONLY solution is to keep her out. It sucks, but lets not call this "common sense" when you're put between a rock and a hard place.

chuck, there are good robbers, and there are bad robbers. It might not be enough to deter the big bad pro robbers, but a policy like this is all you need to protect yourself from small time crooks. Having a policy is better than having no policy. I mean lets look at the location. LAS VEGAS! I'm sorry but they have a lot of crime in Vegas, I would do exactly what the manager did in this case.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
Say what you will but the OG general manager was truly stupid on this one. There's no way to spin it that makes a lick of sense common or otherwise. Most normal people waking the street without customer chip on their shoulder would see it that way.

Stupid general managers who lack the corporate backing to make rational decisions just one more reason to never ever eat at a corporate plastic restaurant.
trmn8r on 2010-10-21:
There's a lot of passion here, both on the OP's part and the replies.

Olive Garden can have such a strict policy, IMO. BUT, it needs to be made clear to anyone leaving that they won't be let back in. It is really very, very simple. The error here, if there is one, is that there isn't a clear sign posted on the inside of the door. Either that, or someone stationed inside the door after 10pm to let patrons leaving know.

I don't understand why the Hostess asked the patron if she had finished her meal, but didn't tell her the sweater would only help her stave off the temperature OUTSIDE the building. I wish I could hear the sister's words.
RestaurantGuy on 2010-10-21:
tnchuck if someone is "hell bent" on robbing you nothing is going to stop them in that I agree. The point is to take as many precautions as possible and to try to minimize the threat of robbery as much as possible. You do that by enacting policies to minimize the opportunities and make it as difficult as possible for the would be robber. Don't make your restaurant a easy target
Ytropious on 2010-10-21:
"Most normal people waking the street without customer chip on their shoulder would see it that way. "

OK I'll take that as being directed at me. Whatever Dan, you're just trying to make my opinion less significant. I hope you become a restaurant manager someday, choose to let a harmless looking customer back into your store because after all, it's COMMON SENSE right? Then proceed to be robbed at gunpoint. It has nothing to do with having a chip on your shoulder, it has to do with what I perceive to be COMMON SENSE.
RestaurantGuy on 2010-10-21:
Dan I would respectfully disagree with you. I agree with the GM on this 100%. Never let anyone in your restaurant for any reason after closing. I would rather lose 6 guests that never come back than to have to make a phone call to someones parents letting them know their son or daughter was held up at gunpoint because the doors are locked and I let a robber in the front door.
tnchuck100 on 2010-10-21:
RG, do you REALLY think the person described in this review presented a threat? Not whether it could have been REMOTELY possible. ANYTHING can be REMOTELY possible.

Given the facts as presented do you really believe Olive Garden was protecting anyone besides a misguided application of a corporate policy?

You must also be aware: A policy is not an absolute rule .... it is a guideline to be applied with common sense. The common sense is what is so sorely lacking here.
RestaurantGuy on 2010-10-21:
chuck it only takes one time thinking that someone doesn't pose a threat to have a gun stuck in your employees face. I'm sorry but in my world (restaurants) this is one of those policies that should be 100% adheared to without any deviation. I am not going to put anyone of my employees or guests at risk. So I would agree this is common sense in my book
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
Ytrop, You hope that I'm robbed at gun point someday? Seriously? Wow, that's kind of messed up dontcha think.

RG, You're a bright guy and I truly respect your opinion. This is why I know if you were in the exact situation as detailed in this review *YOU* would let the lady back in to RE-JOIN her party. I just know you would.
SteveWiginowski on 2010-10-21:
I'm not sure if he would let them back in the restaurant. A group of 6 people, who have been in there for 40 minutes already, then one of them goes to their car at closing time to get a sweater because they are now just getting cold. They are the last customers in the restaurant as well. Better safe than sorry.
RestaurantGuy on 2010-10-21:
Dan actually I wouldn't let her in, nor have I ever broken that policy nor will I ever. I do however have a sign next to my door that says no one is allowed back in after closing. It's not worth the risk in my eyes to break that policy ever under any circumstances
Ytropious on 2010-10-21:
Dan, yes, I hope you get a metaphorical gun in your face, get's the point across...dontcha think? ::rolls eyes::
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
Ytop, this isn't about you or I or metaphorical gun fantasies. It's about a manager so brain dead that he ruined these good people's meal and evening for no sane logical reason whatsoever. And no amount of fact cherry picking or crazy scenario brain storming is going to convince your average customer that OG was right on this one because quite frankly they weren't.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
As an "average customer" I have to agree with DD. Policy or no policy.
Ytropious on 2010-10-21:
From a customers point of view yes, they will probably be upset, but OG did nothing wrong. My metaphorical situation was to put you in the shoes of a restaurant manager, not a customer. As a manager, would you want to take that chance? And if you say yes, are you going to take that chance with every customer? if not then you are profiling and any company worth anything will fire you for doing that. What they won't fire you for however is upholding policy and losing 6 customers. As someone said above, if faced with the prospect of losing your job, or worse, getting a gun in your face, most managers would rather lose the customers, and the company would too believe it or not. It costs less to lose 6 customers for life then it does to go to court over a discrimination lawsuit or a robbery. I'm just trying to say that there's 2 sides to every story. Managers are people too.
Venice09 on 2010-10-21:
I remember reading another complaint just like this one. I don't recall the restaurant, but what are the chances of this happening twice?

Does anyone else remember seeing the other complaint either here or on PFB? I'm curious if it also happened at Olive Garden or another restaurant.
raven2010 on 2010-10-21:
Venice, I SWEAR this exact complaint was on PFB at least a year ago. Word for word.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
Hmmm... Makes perfect sense now...
Venice09 on 2010-10-21:
Raven, I thought so. I just couldn't remember which restaurant. Interesting.
Ytropious on 2010-10-21:
If this is a repost....

Someone who does PFB should look.
Venice09 on 2010-10-21:
I hope someone checks on this because I'm curious to know if it's the same restaurant and/or same OP. This review says it happened on October 17th, 2010.
Skye on 2010-10-21:
If anyone posts on PFB from here, maybe they can check it.
Venice09 on 2010-10-21:
I can't find it, but the trip down memory lane was amusing. I did enjoy seeing some of my old letters. I wonder if it was removed.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
Ask pepper, she posts and comments on PFB.
Anonymous on 2010-10-21:
I read it here. I don't know what PFB is. I have been here about 2 weeks so I read it between then and now but it seems to have disappeared. It was an Olive Garden in PA I think.
trmn8r on 2010-10-21:
Nobody knows what PFB is today. Wiki says it was a consumer feedback website back in the 200x's. There are shreds of evidence of a once glorious past, but all that is left is a historical record. Web statistics show the site was last visited in Nov 2009. RIP
Venice09 on 2010-10-22:
Trmn8r.. hahaha!

PFB now stands for PlanetForBidden.

Lee, the letter I remember was written a while ago, not in the last two weeks. If you saw it recently, then that would be the third time.
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
Venice, it wasn't a new review. There was an OG post about a customer who was irritated that she was charged $2.95 each for her salads. There was only one entree at the table and several salads. It was a few days ago. It was at the bottom of that one in "related reviews" but I can't find either one of them.
Venice09 on 2010-10-22:
Oh, I see. I did a little looking but can't find it either. I wasn't sure if I originally read it here or on PFB. Maybe it was posted on both sites.
yoke on 2010-10-22:
From the sound of this Op and the way they demanded the food boxed and then told the manager they were not going to pay for it makes it sound as if this could have been a setup by this party of 6 to get free food. The OP sounded irate the entire time from how long it took to be seated and how long they got the food, etc. They wanted to order food before they were even seated, never heard of that before. I could see asking for the food to be boxed up and then pay for it, but they demanded the food for free and if the manager did it,as the OP stated, then they must have wanted that party out for a reason and did as they wanted to get rid of them FAST. I would love to hear from the manager at the restaurant to find out what really happened. That is a lot of money that the manager was willing to write off to get rid of the party of 6.
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
I disagree yoke, that is not Filipinos' style.
clutzycook on 2010-10-22:
Agreed, ript. Although I would like to hear the staff's side of the story.
skelly39 on 2010-10-22:
Right. So the SIL, instead of packing heat in her purse, decides to order food, leave it at the table to go get her piece outta the car and come back in and rob the joint. For real? That's the justification?
If they have that rule, then they should have told her she couldn't come back or have a sign posted saying if you leave to get your sweater or weapon after a certain time, you can't come back in.
I'm sorry, but I can't believe how often the business gets the benefit of the doubt with some people while the customer gets shafted.
yoke on 2010-10-22:
ript, the OP was irate from the minute they got there. The OP admitted to demanding the food boxed up and refused to pay. Who does that?
What is the filipino style?
momsey on 2010-10-22:
I'm wondering about this "Filipino style" too. Can someone explain?
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
yoke, the OP being irate from the moment they got there is not the impression I got from reading the review. Filipino culture for the most part is respectful and law abiding.
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
OP, I hope you fired this review off to the OG Corporate office:
5900 Lake Ellenor Drive
Orlando FL 32809
(407)245-4000

You all can go on and on about the what if scenarios and defend OG, but the bottom line is the OP clearly states that Suzette was asked by an employee if she was done and she stated NO, she was going out to get a sweater and coming back...and the employee did not tell her she would be locked out.

That is the root of the complaint. The OP isn't calling the policy ridiculous, they are calling the OG response ridiculous, and rightly so. OG failed miserably on this one.
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
An insight to Filipino culture: . Hiya is shame and is a motivating factor behind behaviour.
. It is a sense of social propriety and conforming to societal norms of behaviour.
. Filipinos believe they must live up to the accepted standards of behaviour and if they fail to do so they bring shame not only upon themselves, but also upon their family.
. One indication of this might be a willingness to spend more than they can afford on a party rather than be shamed by their economic circumstances.
. If someone is publicly embarrassed, criticized, or does not live up to expectations, they feel shame and lose self-esteem.

momsey on 2010-10-22:
Sorry, but that's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. It's a generalization and it's offensive. What's next, all Asians are good at math?
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
Apology accepted. I don't know if all Asians are good at math, but I do know about Filipino culture, and as I said, for the MOST PART, it holds true. It holds true for my family also, if one person does something considered shameful, the whole family carries that shame.
trmn8r on 2010-10-22:
Generalizations aside, here are the rankings in mathematics achievement from 2007:
1 Taiwan
2 South Korea
3 Singapore
4 Hong Kong
5 Japan
:
11 United States

The bottom line is OG either needs to have a large sign on the doors, or make sure to tell anyone leaving after 10 that they can't get back in.
momsey on 2010-10-22:
ript, very cute with the "apology accepted."

I know about American culture in my family, and most Americans are respectful and law-abiding, but when I know someone's American, I don't automatically hold them above others.

I don't know what shame has to do with this review, anyway.
bargod on 2010-10-22:
Bottom line OG needs metal detectors, x-ray machines and pat-down upon entry. If you leave to get your sweater/gun you must be screened again.
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
Well that does sound reasonable bargod. Better safe than sorry.
yoke on 2010-10-22:
ript, then the OP was not acting like what you described. From the moment they walked in there was issues. Why would they feel they deserved the food for free because someone in their party could not get back in and the manager was doing what his company told him he had to. Makes no sense.
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
No Yoke what makes no sense is the OG manager not letting the guest re-enter to eat their meal. Refusing to pay for a meal that one cannot eat makes perfect sense.
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
No, DancingDan, what makes no sense is that the OG employee asked if the person was finished and they said no, and indicated they would be returning, and the OG employee failed to advise them of the policy.

The policy makes sense. I'm sure there are reasons for it, maybe in the part of town that OG is in has a high robbery rate, after businesses close, we don't know. What we do know is that OG failed to advise the customer properly and then the Mgr failed to do the right thing. All the naysayers here know they would be equally upset and would also want a free meal if it happened to them.
Anonymous on 2010-10-22:
yoke, you and I are not getting the same thing out of the review. I read it and came away with one impression, and you another. The way I read and interpreted the review made sense to me. Now go ahead and call me senseless, you know you want to, lol!
Venice09 on 2010-10-22:
Has anyone checked to see if this actually happened?

Either way, interesting debate.
Ytropious on 2010-10-22:
You are all missing the fact that the OP was not there while his table mate left and went outside. For all we know the Hostess DID try to tell her she couldn't get back in, but maybe she was already out the door. I walk fast, if someone is telling me something important they better yell STOP first or I probably won't hear it.
ctoto3232 on 2010-10-22:
OK everyone--I wrote this letter. Here is a crazy update. I sent the letter to Corporate Office. I talked to the Director of Operations for OG in my region and according to Jim-- the Manager that night is just following co. policy. I asked Jim if that means OG corp does not feel that the managers are intuitive enough to make decisions on their own and that they have to follow co. policy to the letter--he said YES. I have our 8mins and 44 sec conversation recorded. My local TV station cannot believe this is happening and I will be going on camera next weeK! No its not about the food--Its about what is right or wrong. The Dir. of Operation was apologetic about what happened and he was offering a free meal for my family but I asked him what will change at OG and he said "You are not going to like what I'm going to say but the manager has to follow policy". He said the policy is to protect the employee and customer--so I asked him is Suzette then no longer a customer as soon as she stepped outside the door?-- all he keeps saying is "I understand your frustration" -- What a bunch of BS. I told him I don't feel safe eating at OG since now I know that I am not safe as soon as I stepped outside their door.
This policy doesn't protect anyone. If someone really wants to rob this restaurant--they can easily go in as someone is going out the door--daaa
Corporation like this creates people with no humanity--its all about the bottom line--THE MONEY
Venice09 on 2010-10-22:
So, did this ever happen to you before, ctoto?
Skye on 2010-10-22:
I thought this complaint was written by cc7070.

Why is ctoto3232 going on TV about this incident?
ctoto3232 on 2010-10-22:
NEVER. I have a good job. I get paid for every 15 minutes of my time. Free food does not entice me. I only took the food that night because I was so upset--I didn't know what to do. I figured they wasted my time--my time is valuable just like everybody else.
Skye on 2010-10-22:
I wonder why Suzette didn't write a complaint about being locked outside.
Venice09 on 2010-10-22:
I guess it's a coincidence that this exact same thing happened to someone else. Who'd have thought?
ctoto3232 on 2010-10-22:
ctoto3232 and cc7070 is one and the same. This is the first time I have ever posted a complaint online and to be honest I couldn't remember my original ID so I had to create a new one.

ctoto3232 on 2010-10-22:
Suzette is 20 yo and she is shy. I am in a managerial position myself so I have more assertive training.
Skye on 2010-10-22:
Bravo.
FlShopper on 2010-10-22:
I don't agree with your assertion that their bottom line is money; if it was, they would've let Suzette back in and they would've insisted you pay for your meal.
It sounds like the managers hands are tied when it comes to this policy.
Ytropious on 2010-10-23:
Policy is policy is policy. OP, would you like it if you were eating at OG, another party sent someone outside, then that person came back inside with a gun? You'd be pretty angry that they didn't follow policy then right? It's the same for you, and this time the shoe is on the other foot. They have to be FAIR because if they are not it's just discriminatory.

Also as for the TV appearance? We have a news station just like it around here that is known for its "investigatory" journalism. They always try to catch companies doing things then plant it all over TV and make themselves look like saints when they aren't giving the whole story. They came into my store once during what was supposed to be a celebratory time and tried to get us to comment on lead paint on Chinese toys, basically saying "oh you carry Chinese products here, you're poisoning children". They're a bunch of lowlifes so yeah, enjoy your 15 minutes of not giving the whole story, whatever makes you feel good. Also have fun in court the second you try to use that recorded conversation on TV. Unless you notified the manager he was being recorded, you may as well burn that tape.
ctoto3232 on 2010-10-23:
If anyone really wants to come in to Olive Garden with a gun--no policy could stop that. They didn't ask me if I had a gun when I went inside--Daaa
ctoto3232 on 2010-10-23:
Given a chance of practicing my freedom of speech specially when a stupid injustice is going on-- No Free food can top that! Not even a question.
ctoto3232 on 2010-10-23:
what are they going to do--ask each person that leaves the restaurant close to closing time "r u done yet, r u done yet, r u done yet? How bizarre is that.

They should stop advertising "When you're at Olive Garden, you're just like family" except when you step outside their door--then you're a total stranger!
Skye on 2010-10-23:
Why would that be bizarre to ask each person if they are done yet, during CLOSING time? So you think it was dumb of them to ask Suzette this question, which by the way, you don't even know if she answered, because you were not with her.

It's a shame that this happened to HER, but it did, and it's over with. What do you think should be done now? What else would you like?

ctoto3232 on 2010-10-23:
No--it did not just happened to HER. This experience happened to 6 people because we were all affected by this.

There is so many things wrong with this policy in so many levels!
Anonymous on 2010-10-23:
This is a clear cut case of common sense, and the restaurant following the letter of the law a little too close. On many occasions, my wife and I have entered a restaurant only to find it much colder than it was outside. Often times she will run back out to the truck and retrieve a sweater or jacket of sorts. I believe the OP is in the right on this one, and the policy is only meant towards "new" customers, and not pre-existing ones. Too much has been made about getting weapons, racial implications, etc...when it just boils down to the fact that they were already customers that had been waited on. Period. Very nice review and justified complaint by the OP.
Venice09 on 2010-10-23:
Good question, Skye. What does the OP think should be done now?
Ytropious on 2010-10-23:
Seriously. It's not like OG is going to do away with this policy because it's a GOOD policy. I for one won't stop going to OG or any Darden restaurants.
momsey on 2010-10-25:
Skye has a great question. What will happen next? You got a free meal for six people. Yes, you were inconvenienced and I would be livid as well, but that doesn't mean that anything is going to change as a result of anyone going on TV to talk about this situation.
boozeNshoes on 2010-11-30:
Well to answer everyones question there is a sign posted on the door I used to work for the darden company (not this location) and they put it up an hour before closing. The host team isrequired to put it up on the door so I'm almost 100 percent sure there was probably a sign posted. And who is their right mind goes into a restaurant 10 minutes before they close? Ithink it sucks that the manager was put into this position buti agree withthe people who say they made the right decision. I wouldn't lose my job over ssomething like that! And that's completely rude to demand that they pay for your food! !! Like seriously?!!!
JennyOGServer1 on 2010-12-18:
As a waitress at Olive Garden, I'd love to let you know that YOU, sir, are the one with no common sense. :)
Let me get this straight, you come in 5 minutes until close with a party of 6 (walking right past the sign that says nobody is allowed inside the restaurant after 10 pm because it is COMPANY policy,) try to order food with the HOSTESS (who cannot even get into the computer system, let alone help you in any way when it comes to your food,) you argue endlessly with the managers and host's who can do nothing but hold up company policy because their job is much more important than your spaghetti, and then you demand that you get all of your food for free because YOU cannot read?
Honestly, you have a lot of nerve.
jktshff1 on 2010-12-18:
Jenny, your comment is a prime example of the difficulties at some of the OG's ie the employees. The customer was in @40 min prior to closing, This particular OG handled the situation very badly.
If a restaurant is open until 10, then if I arrive at 9:55 I should still be able to order a meal, and enjoy it. Would I, no common sense tells me not to, just as common sense should tell the mgr to let the person back in. Just because the employees start cleaning up before closing is not the customer's fault.
Luckily, the OG's in my neck of the woods have wonderful employees that do a great job.
JessieDanni on 2011-03-31:
Your race really has nothing to do with anything. It would not have mattered if you were white, black, hispanic or purple with spots, we can't let you back in. I have worked at three separate OG locations and at every single one they post a sign on the door that clearly states after 10 you can't leave or you will not be allowed back in. What I find most disturbing about your "complaint" is that you state "I have been in the reserves for eight years and have never been more emotionally disturbed than from this experience". That is just ridiculous. The fact that your family didn't follow the rules resulted in this happening. It was a good ploy to get your food for free. I suppose you didn't tip your server either who had nothing to do with it. I can almost guess your the type of person who complains no matter where he goes so he can get things for free, and that you probably never tip your server. I'm glad you will never be back to the OG, because I feel bad for the next server who gets you. Looks like she won't be getting any help paying her bills with your family sitting in his or her section.
Rick on 2013-01-09:
Don't show up at closing
If they close at 10 just because you got there at 9:59
Does not mean that it's cool
Costs more money in payroll to serve you your food than your check is.
And it is a safety hazard
Lots of cash being counted at closing time
Though I don't think you were a threat
If someone came into rob the builiding your post would be different
That rule was put into effect for a reason
A robbery obviously took place
And this was the solution to help prevent it from happening again
Closed is closed
Bottom line go out to dinner earlier and save you and everyone else the trouble
Close commentsAdd reply
Information for the complainers
Posted by on
My name is Lizzie. I have worked for Olive Garden for several years, and just came across this website. I am currently frustrated with my job due to harassment at work from another co-worker, but upon reading some of these complaints, I felt the need to comment back to some of your people. First of all, working at any place that serves food is probably one of the most difficult and demeaning jobs in this country. No matter what goes wrong, everyone thinks its the server's fault. Whether the food doesn't taste very good, or if it takes a long time, all of these things are completely out of the server's control and it's very frustrating for us to listen to your complaints and then you take it out on us by stiffing us. Here are a few things I would like to say though, before you all go and complain some more.

1. Servers don't cook the food. We are more than happy to get a manager and have the cooks re-make your meal, but please do not get mad at us, as we had nothing to do with it. Don't forget that the cooks are paid hourly, they really don't care if you like your meal or not.

2. YES there is an up charge for salad. We don't hand out free salad, we are not a homeless shelter. It comes complimentary with every MEAL (which does not include an appetizer, even if you're eating an appetizer as your meal). If we don't charge you and we get caught, we get fired. If you don't like it, talk to a manager.

3. YES there is an upcharge for Alfredo sauce, and the cooks won't even give you Alfredo until you ring it in. It's very expensive, and we're sorry, but there's nothing we can do about it. If we steal it for you, we can get fired.

4. Soup and Salad may be great, and I agree, it tastes wonderful. But it is the most difficult thing you can order, because we now have to run back and forth and back and forth just to get refill after refill after refill. And the worst part is, you don't tip us on all the extra work we're doing, because you don't realize how much work it actually is. Imagine all 3 or 4 of our tables, each person ordering unlimited soup and salad... if each table has an average of 3 people, and I have 4 tables, that's 12 people I'm constantly refilling soup, salad and bread for. By the time I come back to your table, you're ready for something else, and so is everyone else in my section... it's hard. We don't mind doing it, but please don't complain when you don't get your refill right away, we are VERY busy. And tipping $2 for all that work? That's a slap in our face.

5. I"m sorry that you're upset that we are a popular restaurant and that there are lines, and that you may just have to wait. It means we're popular, that's a good thing for Olive Garden.

6. At 4 pm every day, there is a shift change over. Its usually about 20 minutes of complete disaster and chaos, but this is probably the worst time to come to OG.

7. Coming in 5 minutes before we close means you are going to get the bottom of the barrel of whatever you order. Its like that at every restaurant- your food will probably suck.

8. Please don't forget that we make our money based on what you give us. That's how we pay our bills... if you're going to be cheap, or you can't afford to eat at a nice place, then go to Burger King and have it 'your way'. But this is a place of business, where we depend on tips to survive every day life.

Thank you and have a nice day.
     
Read 23 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
Anonymous on 2010-02-15:
" because we now have to run back and forth and back and forth just to get refill after refill after refill."


That is part of your job description...right?

Anonymous on 2010-02-15:
You have some good points. But I agree with Steve. It's part of your job description to get more soup and salad
Anonymous on 2010-02-15:
I also agree. These are fine comments that people should remember, but I'm not concerned with your issues regarding the soup and salad.

And while asking us to not "forget that we make our money based on what you give us" is fine and all. You should also remember that we don't just give away our money because you need it. We pay extra for quality service. (I actually cannot remember a time when I've received poor service. Oh, yeah, IHOP.)
goduke on 2010-02-15:
I hear what you are saying Lizzie, but keep in mind that for me, the customer guy, you are the face of the company during the meal. I'm not chatting with the cook. I'm not asking the CEO for iced tea. It's you. While I try to be understanding, including how much something is going to cost if I go "off the menu" for a bit, I still have to count on you for my experience to be good. I shouldn't be the one realizing my food is wrong. You should. When you do that well, I tip well. When it's done poorly, well, it goes the other way. If that's not an environment in which you find yourself happy and successful, chances are you need to try to take another route in life.
Inat on 2010-02-15:
I am a frequent defender of The OG... and I like the soup & salad quite a bit. I tip a minimum of $5.00 regardless of meal price (I was a server/bartender in college) but all the same, you must remember that most people live and die by the 10%-20% - and for soup & Salad, that is about $2.50 max . . . you don't make your money one soup & salad, or one beer, or two apps... you make your money on the big meals and from those of us who tip more than the minimum.
andbran on 2010-02-15:
I love OG. when the food doesn't turn out well I know its the cook not the server. you make a lot of valid points. I don't see why anyone comes in toward the end of the day. they are boumd to get what's leftover.
Starlord on 2010-02-15:
My first wife worked at a posh sit-down restaurant, and I remember one night in particular. They had a party of 40 from a well-known religious organization who kept the waitstaff running with special requests. When they left, the girls started cleaning the table. Under each plate was a tract. I guess the party thought that was an appropriate tip.
Ytropious on 2010-02-15:
I see where the OP is coming from. What she's saying is that even though soup and salad lunch doesn't cost much, the extra work involved in the service of bringing it to you should be considered in the tip. Cheap dinner shouldn't always mean low tip. You tip for service regardless of meal price. Anyway I also agree with yelling at servers, or cashiers, or anyone not equip to properly deal with complaints. I would never stiff or complain at my server for a wrong doing in the kitchen because I'm intelligent enough to know my issue has nothing to do with them. It's a shame others aren't quite that bright.
RestaurantGuy on 2010-02-15:
OK this might be a little long. I agree with this OP in a few areas. 1 If you ask for something extra it will cost more they have no control over that (but they should inform you of the cost) 2 Most of the time your server does not run your food to your table so they will not know if it came out right or not. (yes the server that brought your food should make sure but do you double check your co workers work for them) 3- I understand that most people tip off the total amount but if the server is doing more work for your table (unlimeted salad) you really should take that into account when you tip) 4 your server is just that your server if there is a problem do not take it out on them (if it is not service oriented Ie I didn't get refills and even then it might be managements fault as they gave that server to many tables)as they cannot do anything for you ask for the manager/owner as they have the power to make things right. In ending all I ask is do you want to be paid for the work you do on commission (after all that is what a server is paid on) the more they do for you the more you should tip them as long as they take care of you and do not punish them for things outside their control (your food took long due to the kitchen...etc) as you would not like it if the roles were reversed
MissMae on 2010-02-15:
Haha...my ex FIL would tip precisely 10% no matter what type of restaurant he was in or what type of service he received. I don't know how many times I had to sneak back in and leave more of a tip.

Great post, Lizzie...and I don't know how it works at OG, but many restaurants require the waitstaff to share their tips with the cooks and the dishwashers, and I doubt most patrons even consider that when they get their calculators out and determine precisely what percentage they should tip (yes, I've seen that on many occasion). My general rule of thumb is to double the tax and throw in a couple more bucks, more if the service was above average.
merope on 2010-02-17:
Your job is to "run around." We are not required to support you. And as for those nasty born again crazies, read the book Nickel and Dimed. These loving Christians are known for stiffing waitstaff.
Connoisseur on 2010-03-01:
Off the bat you are doing your job, so you should not expect "tips" for doing your job. If you depend on "tips" to make ends meet..call your employer cheap for exploiting you. Yes, it is hard work, but the fact that you are not compensated for your sweat equity properly, again look toward your cheap employer, not to the customer whose without patronage you wouldn't have a job, because your cheap employers restaurant would go under. Tipping is a courtesy....not your right to have. Because of attitude like yours, I have long stopped tipping. I pay for my food if you don't get it on the table.....I walk out.
PepperElf on 2010-03-01:
personally I really like the soup and salad one too
but I also believe in tipping well (and if I can't afford to tip I can't afford to go out anyway)
Anonymous on 2010-03-01:
I never go out unless I have money left over for a tip.

JessieDanni on 2010-03-06:
Any non server that commented on here, missed the whole point when they said "that's part of your job description, right?" She said she didn't mind doing it-she knows that's her job-she just wanted customers to realize that sometimes it takes a minute to refill your soup or salad. She was also saying this to make people realize that soup and salad, while a cheap meal for guests, it is A LOT OF WORK, and deserves more than a 20% tip. I live in South Carolina, where the natives think it perfectly fine to tip 10%.......IT IS NOT! She did an eloquent job explaining server pay, and the work we do. Don't eat out if you can't afford to tip!
Connoisseur on 2010-03-13:
Nobody should get a tip for doing their job. That is what they get paid for. Tips is a curtesey. Now people expect it and call you cheap if you don't give. "Don't eat out if you cannot afford a tip?" I should deny myself a small pleasure? I think not. I will go out to eat. Order what I can afford. Pay for what I can afford and you will serve if you want my patronage. Or I will take it to the guy down the street. This is not the first place I read you waiters demand tips.......gives me all the more incentive not to give, to ingrates, who call people who give out of the goodness of their heart. Call me cheap all you want. Your tips that you demand is my salad and glass of wine...which is usually half full and cost as much as one bottle of domestic wine. Ingrates get nothing from me.
Anonymous on 2010-03-13:
Connoisseur, if you are truly a 'connoisseur' you know that servers are lucky if they even make minimum wage.

"Call me cheap all you want." I am calling you cheap and if I was a server I'd tell you to pound sand and go somewhere else.
Ytropious on 2010-03-13:
Are you kidding me? Servers are paid LESS because they are expected to make tips. It is technically part of their JOB to get tips my friend. I will call you cheap until the cows come home, since I call my own husband cheap for being a stingy tipper.
Connoisseur on 2010-03-14:
Here's the deal, I know someone who OWNS a restaurant. She graduated out of Cornell. Parents had a summer home as well as the condo in NYC. Vacation every year, and yes, a three car garage in the upper crust neighbor of Long Island. Yes, her parents owned that cash cow of a restaurant. And, yes, they paid poverty wages to the waiters........how else could they afford the finer things in life? There is no such thing as a poor restaurant owner(unless they just started out). Established restaurants are a gold mine and like bankers, they exploit their workers by paying them peanuts(no pun intended.) Restaurants "institutionalized" tips..and that is how they get away with paying dirt....by having the customer make up for the lack. I guess I am cheap because I do know just how restaurateurs operate. Err..........like cheap b****. I have no intention of being their stupid patsy of supplementing their sorry pay scales. If you waiters were smart....you would band together and demand what you are worth, or think you are worth.
Oh, and those tip jars????Tips for what? for working the cash register?? Get real. Yes, I am cheap for you, but very generous to the "charities" of my choice. AND none of you service people are charity cases in my eyes. Stupid for working for poverty wages and letting yourselves being exploited...but not charity material. Soooooooooooooooooooooory.
Talk360 on 2010-03-14:
Understand most people should give tips to the people that provide us with any services accepted to us. Just like the guy who brings me my food at the table & refills my drink if they do a good job & I am satisfied with my service than I will tip. Now if things were not as I had wished them to be I would request for a manager & explain to them the real issue I have so that it won't be repeated next time I come. Its not the servers fault the food isn't cooked right or they are out of bread sticks. BUT it is their own fault if they do not smile or greet you with courteous behavior & if they leave your drink empty the whole time you were there eating.
Server on 2013-07-28:
LOL. Server wage by law is half of min wage. But no, we don't deserve equality. what's that..
jacob on 2014-04-18:
I have had very good experiences in Leominster Ma. and Manchester N.H. during the past 3-4 years. Also in Nashua N.HY.
To lizzie72 (we), I appreciate you very much. You are very special and I appreciate all you do and what you do not do! You deserve much more than you receive. Keep on!
Thank you for what you do! : )
Jacob "Orlando" Billger
Mindy hill on 2014-07-22:
Holy Cow!!! Thank you so much for your comment. I just read a guests horrible comment about my terribly service.
Close commentsAdd reply
Will not allow display of American Flag
Posted by on
The Olive Garden in Oxford Alabama would not allow the American Legion at a reserved lunch display the American Flag . This is pathetic.

Veterans and Veterans families and friends all over the US will be boycotting Olive Garden once this story hits the veterans e-mail network

Remember, Golden Corral who endorses veterans is just next doo to this establishment.
     
Read 10 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
FlitteringFirefly on 2011-10-07:
Have you contacted corporate to ask what the issue is? Golden Corral also has a tendency to be very homophobic. No restaurant is going to please every one.
trmn8r on 2011-10-07:
I can't recall seeing an American flag displayed at a restaurant. In my opinion it isn't necessarily unpatriotic not to do so or turn down a request to temporarily display one. It could set a precedent for any group to have a flag of its choice displayed, such as the Rebel flag.
Ben There on 2011-10-08:
What kind of flag are you talking about? Little table toppers on the reserved tables, or a huge flag hung on the wall in the main dining room?
Anonymous on 2011-10-08:
trmn8r> +1000 on your precedent comment...you took the words right out of my mouth.
Anonymous on 2011-10-08:
I agree j4all, excellent comment tmrn8r. It was right to the point!
GenuineNerd on 2011-10-08:
I've heard the same homophobic story about Cracker Barrel. Still, displaying the American flag depends on the owner or manager of the establishment, and not all restaurants fly the flag...in fact, I have seen very few that do.
southern to the bone on 2011-10-11:
THIS IS AMERICA. Make no excuses and Expect no less. WE ARE AMERICANS - The Flag is our banner of the investment and sacrifice of generations past. LOVE AMERICA or LEAVE AMERICA. ACCEPT NO LESS.
Alain on 2011-10-11:
Maybe Logan's Roadhouse on Ali Way will work with you?
Ben There on 2011-10-11:
I don't think not hanging a big flag in a place of business is unpatriotic. By thinking that those who wouldn't do it are unpatriotic and should leave America is intolerant and uninformed.

Patriotism is like religion... Some like to practice it quietly, while others like to shove it down others throats while saying "if you don't believe what I believe, then you are wrong".

Remember that America is the land of the free, and we are free not to hang flags in our businesses. THAT, MY FRIEND, IS THE INVESTMENT AND SACRIFICE OF GENERATIONS PAST. The flag is simply another piece of cloth - a great one at that - that represents part of that past and our future.
rebel1961 on 2011-10-11:
The flag was only being used for a luncheon. It's not like they were trying to hang a huge flag on the wall and leave it.
Close commentsAdd reply
Not sure
Posted by on
MANCHESTER, CONNECTICUT -- So I decided to make this more informative, rather than a complaint. Hubby wanted to go to Olive Garden for dinner last night. Since I agreed to let him pick, no complaints about restaurant choice from me. The wait was about 25 minutes, not bad for Saturday evening. I guess the first thing I noticed was the exaggerated, grandiose if you will, manner in which we were greeted.It was almost comical but, I'm sure, unintentional.Anyhoo, no harm, soon enough we were seated.

Waitress was pleasant enough. Hubby got the Eggplant Parmesan, gnocchi soup and a glass of white wine, I got the spaghetti with meat sauce, salad and a diet coke. Noticed that the prices had increased since the last time we were there. Higher food costs, gas prices, etc, etc...OK, got it. I don't mind paying more if the quality remains the same. Unfortunately, it just wasn't there. The salad "seemed" to have enough dressing, yet it tasted bland. Did they dilute the dressing? Had to wait 15 minutes for my drink refill but I did notice the party of nine that just grabbed our waitress' attention. No big deal, I understand. I can wait.

Our main courses arrived and dang it! even the portions were noticeably smaller. Hmmm, if I'm paying more, why are the portions noticeably smaller? Boo! Even the spaghetti sauce was not as flavorful. Hubby thought his eggplant was nice and portions seemed adequate, but after all, it's a vegetable and thus not as expensive to make as a meat dish. We did decide to get dessert. He got Tiramisu and coffee. I got Zeppole, partially swimming in some of the coffee our waitress spilled on them. She offered to replace them but by that time, it seemed a moot point. I was already underwhelmed by the experience. Didn't spoil it for hubby, but it was just disappointing. Tipped and thanked our waitress appropriately but I doubt we will be back soon. Perhaps not even until hubby is craving Olive Garden again, and even then, he can be swayed if necessary...
     
Read 24 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
I enjoyed reading your review. Very well written. Sounds like the dinner was not very satisfying, but I hope you at least had a good evening. Thanks for sharing!
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
Yup, sounds like my one and only experience I had at Olive Garden
drugdoc121 on 2011-06-19:
Thanks for the kind comments. Nicole29-I tried to still have an enjoyable evening for hubby's sake. It is just disappointing when one pays money, braves traffic and wait times, all for disappointing food. Oh well. Lesson learned. Shame though, I really used to enjoy their salad.
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
I know, Drugdoc. Sadly the experience you described sounds like a lot of my own trips to restaurants in the past year...even the really pricey ones. It seems everyone is cutting corners.

To make up for it, we've been cooking all kinds of new dishes, which is fun and a good time together.
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
I have always had excellent service at OG, guess it depends on the location.
drugdoc121 on 2011-06-19:
I totally agree Wally. I think my disappointment last night was more with the food than the service.
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
I always get the same thing the chicken Scampi. I agree the food has gone up in price but not Quality (VH)
drugdoc121 on 2011-06-19:
Yup Wally. I wish restaurateurs would realize that if we love the food, we will pay the price. Don't mess with quality to save a few bucks. You will lose loyal customers in the end.
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
drugdoc121> Well said. I would be willing to shell out the few extra dollars if the quality remained the same. I realize the economic times change, and with that comes price hikes. But the quality should always remain the same. Too bad that isn't always the case:(
drugdoc121 on 2011-06-19:
Agreed and thank you DIRM :)
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
I have pretty much stopped eating at chain restaurants in favor of mom and pop joints. You get more bang for your buck and the food is excellent better quality and healthier.
drugdoc121 on 2011-06-19:
I need to do that more Wally. Hard at times though when you crave something specific, like OG's salad. I used to really enjoy them. Well, I'll find something new to crave, elsewhere.
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
Wally, you eat at fast food places nearly every day
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
Sounds like Wally has a stalker?

*Dodging a bowl of all-you-can-eat pasta*
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
I wasn't talking about fast food places. I was talking about restaurants. When I go to a sit down full service restaurant I give my business to locally owned joints.
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
Wing Stop is not a locally owned joint
drugdoc121 on 2011-06-19:
LMAO
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
Guess your right Dirm.
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
Wally, you post fast food reviews every week
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
Wing Stop is fast food dufus. *sticks tongue out*
trmn8r on 2011-06-19:
This is a great review. I concur with Wally's approach - I've pretty much given up on chain restaurants, including OG. The first thing that happened was they took my usual entree off the list. Then on one visit the service sucked badly. After sitting thirsty and waiting 10 minutes to be greeted, the server said "I'll be back in a minute." I smiled, got up and left and never returned.
Anonymous on 2011-06-19:
I love to try the little hole-in-the-wall joints. They usually have 10x the quality in order to compete with the everyday low prices of the regular chains. That's not to say I never eat at the chains either, because there's days when I crave the Big Mac's and Cheesy Gordita Crunches of the world.
drugdoc121 on 2011-06-19:
Thanks trmn8r
Bobby on 2011-06-20:
This just confirms my avoidance of chains and support of local mom and pop Italian restaurants.
Close commentsAdd reply
The most poor customer service I've ever experienced in my life...
Posted by on
Hi my name is Carmen Bazo, one of my good friends came back into town arfter the holidays and we decided to go eat at your restaurant in Lynnwood to celebrate. Little that I know I was making the worst choice of my life. The wait was OK for a busy day once we got sat at the table this one lady came and asked for our drinks orders after bringing them she started with the food order. We went around telling her our choices she asked each one of us soup or salad we all answered even the ones that ordered just appetizers, they even asked does it come with it and I said I don't think so but ask her she said oh yes it comes with it so we thought it was included on the price since she said so. After ordering the food we waited waited waited for exactly 17 minutes for the salad and soup(which was cold) to come we were very hungry and impatient at this point. Once we started trying to enjoy our meal the server who it was a guy now came with the food, We all looked at him like hmmm we haven't even take two bites of our salad yet. He said is there a problem? I explained to him that we waited almost 20 minutes just to get the salad and soup and now the food arrives and there's obviously no room at the table for it. He said well I can take it back then if you want, which for all of us sounded rude and at the same time meant that our food was just going to sit there for how long getting cold and nasty. We told him just to leave it and we decided to stop eating the salad and soups. We were eating our meal and 7 minutes later people at our table wanted more bread since there was only enough one for each of us and we waited waited waited to see our server again to ask for bread and refill on water. I really got irritated cause I didn't think this was the way of serving people at a restaurant. I had to stand up go to the front door to talk to someone and asked the lady to help me find my waiter cause we needed more bread. After a few minutes he came asking if we needed anything??????? I looked at him and said yes bread please! He brought it I tried to forget about everything and just enjoy my meal. We never saw him again for god knows how long still glasses empty at this point. The manager came and apologize for the inconvenience and offered desserts on the house. We said oh well whatever I guess it's something for the wait. Desserts took about 15 minutes to come to the table! something that is already made and only needs to be served. The ones that were supposed to be to go didn't come in a box. Then the bill we told him we needed split in so many ways he brought the bill with wrong items in them. After we explained to him which ones go with which he came back charging two of them with the soup and salad that at the beginning we were told were included. We asked about it again he said that girl shouldn't have said that cause its an extra charge that it doesn't come with their two choices. We said look we asked in case we heard wrong she repeated herself and said yes it comes with it. At the end he was so tired of coming back and forth that he said he'd waived the charge. We got at the restaurant at 6:45 pm and left at 9!!!! and the mayority of time we spent it just trying to get our food and bill the right way.....what a disappointment.....never again...
     
Read 22 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
Anonymous on 2009-12-30:
You knew they were busy. Busy takes time. 2 hours for a nice dinner is not unheard of in a busy restaurant. That is our average night out. Me thinks you doth protest too much.
Ponie on 2009-12-30:
Wonder how many there were in the party?
jktshff1 on 2009-12-30:
That was my first thought Ponie.
goduke on 2009-12-30:
I won't talk about much of this. If you had told the wait staff that the bill needed to be split at the beginning, however, it would have been much more helpful for them, and quicker for you.
redmx3racer on 2009-12-30:
So you wanted more drinks, and more breadsticks, but only asked for the breadsticks when asked if you wanted anything else, and then were miffed when all you got was breadsticks?
As a former server myself, I agree that I think you got poor service. But servers are not mindreaders. While I personally would have clarified you did not want drinks after I noticed your empty glass, this server did not. I once had a table complain that I never got them drinks-I asked them if they wanted anything, made suggestions, they said no. I asked again when I took the food order, they said no. I asked again when I dropped the food off, they said no. I thought, well that is a first. Then they complained to the manager that I never brought them anything to drink. They said they wanted water, but never asked for it as they don't consider tap water to be "a drink" (I had offered bottled water, we were not supposed to offer tap water or bring it automatically).
PepperElf on 2009-12-30:
and wait. you were upset that the second part of the meal came to early
but when he offered to bring it back you felt it was rude

it sounds a lot like no matter what he tried to do, it would have been the wrong thing.

I mean if you complained about them brining the main course while you weren't finished with the salad... how did you think they could fix the issue.

they can't hop into a time machine to alter the past.
Anonymous on 2009-12-30:
First of all good for you for not backing down on the salad charges. Charges removed -- chalk another one up for the customer.

It's very frustrating the inadequate and incompetent level of service provided by too many wait staff these days. Poor training? Servers who feel tips are an entitlement? Or just people who don't care? I don't know but I do know that you received extremely bad service from your waitress. It's bad enough she was completely ignorant to the Olive Garden's complimentary salad policy but then to try to charge you for her ignorance is just unacceptable. Also, what kind of dote brings the entrees within minutes of the salad? Obviously this waitress would be better suited scrubbing toilets than waiting tables.

If it were me next time I got the Italian food hunger I would visit a locally owned and operated restaurant where you'll get better food and service given by people who value you as a customer.

Great review!
Anonymous on 2009-12-30:
Stewart, I beg to differ. Ms. Bazo and her crew are a server's nightmare especially on a busy night. The constant nagging about everything then the splitting of the bill takes the cake.
MG, people you are at The OLIVE GARDEN (a national chain) not Gaetano's.
"You get what you give".
Anonymous on 2009-12-30:
ZZ, Don't beg it's not dignified.
momsey on 2009-12-30:
I know it's fun to pile on the complainers on this site and make it sound like everything is their fault, but I'm with the OP on this one, for the most part.

For the splitting checks, that is very annoying, and unless you and your friends can't all agree on what everyone owes, I don't see how it's necessary.

Everything else sounds at least one of the visits I've made to the Olive Garden. Yes, it's not a fancy restaurant, but that doesn't mean that the service should be so lacking. It is annoying when the dinner comes so soon after apps/salad, and I have had a waiter seem very annoyed when we asked the dinner to come a little later.

It doesn't really matter how many people were in the party, except for the splitting checks bit (which, as previously stated, is annoying and shouldn't be necessary in a group of friends.) Service should not suffer if it's a group larger than 3 or 4.
Inat on 2009-12-30:
I've said it before, OG is slow fast food - but that doesn't mean I will not go there. My wife and I go often for soup & salad lucnh - its good, cheap, and quick. We've never had a bad experiene whne it is just us - they time the soup and salad and give us refills on both, etc. Hoever My Mother-in-law LOVES the OG so we often go for dinner when she is with us. She is a TERRIBLE diner and a waitors worse nightmare - and as someone else stated, 'you get what you give' - she gives attitude and she gets it right back - she thinks the wiatstaff should read her mind and know that she wants breadsticks witout salt, salad dressing on hte side, and no pepperoncini in the salad. If they forget or take too much time, all hell breaks loose. I think OG wine is swill but I guzzle it when I'm there with the M-I-L just waiting for the experience to end...
Anonymous on 2009-12-30:
Momsey, I am not piling on anyone. I am simply voicing my opinion which is what this site is for. It is not for critiquing fellow members. Thank you.

Great points, Inat.
Anonymous on 2009-12-30:
Don't be so sensitive, Zzrokk, for pete's sake momsey didn't direct her comment towards you. One more thing, mister ombudsman, who are you to critique momsey's comments?
Anonymous on 2009-12-30:
LadyS: (BA!)

Stewart, stay on topic and do what I try to do here everyday.....HELP PEOPLE!
Personally, have I never even given thought of the time between being served the salad and soup before the main dish. I prefer all of my food at once and consider that to be the norm.
I go out to eat then leave. Sitting around gabbing over breadsticks and coffee for 2.5 hours is not my ideal of fun.
Anonymous on 2009-12-30:
Well, it got removed but it still stands.
Ytropious on 2009-12-30:
Has anyone ever seen the movie "Waiting..."? This sounds exactly like one of the scenes! One table of women in the movie are portrayed as snotty and are eating salads and then get angry when the food comes out when they are still on salads then snark that they don't want the food to go back to the kitchen because it will get cold. I hope someone else has seen that movie!
momsey on 2010-01-03:
Ytropious, I have seen and love that movie! That is a major thought in my head every time I go out to eat and there's something I could complain about. We usually just suck it up and are really nice to the server!
Abbie13 on 2010-01-03:
I thought of that movie too when I was reading the complaint
JessieDanni on 2010-03-06:
I am a server at the Olive Garden and even though I am a waitress and my job is to wait on people that does not mean I am a slave, mind reader, mr gadget with my go go gadget arms to reach down to the last person at the end of the booth, nor do I have the ability to be in five places at one time. Give your server a break, the world does not revolve around you and your needs. I'll be glad to get you whatever you need/want, but if your being a total douchebag while your asking for it you are probably not going to get it as fast. Why should we waste our time kissing your ass when your not going to tip us anyway. I highly suggest not going out to eat at any restaurant because I'm sure you will unhappy where ever you go. Go to McDonalds they have a dollar menu, take less than five minutes and you don't have to tip them when your done. Problem solved.
Anonymous on 2010-03-06:
Actually Jessie, when I am a customer at the Olive Garden or any other eating establishment the world does revolve around my needs. That does not mean that I have the right to have unreasonable expectations, but if we are paying for a meal we are also paying for decent service. I am not saying that the person who posted this complaint is right, but I am saying that your comment is not exactly correct either.
Anonymous on 2010-03-06:
You are right when you say you are paying for decent service, Pro. But...if you want the world to revolve around your needs then the tip pays for that. After a very short time behind a bar, I could tell who was going to get out of this world service and who was going to get decent service, if ya know what I mean.
Anonymous on 2010-03-06:
Absolutely Judge! Couldn't agree more.
Close commentsAdd reply
I Sure Did Get Treated Like Family!
Posted by on
TEMPLE, TEXAS -- My co-workers and I were so excited when a new Olive Garden opened up in our town, we had been going only on special occasions to an Olive Garden over 30 minutes away.

Our excitement has died down considerably as going and eating at this location is much like playing the lottery when it comes to service, and we are usually on the losing end.

On this particular Friday afternoon we were coming up on the end of a very stressful week at our job and wanted to treat ourselves to a nice lunch.
When we arrived we were promptly seated and given menus. We then had two separate servers come over and introduce themselves, one of them we never saw again. Our drinks arrived several minutes after we ordered them and we were all slightly confused when the waitress stood at one end of the table and had us pass the drinks to the 8 plus people sitting at our table. We shrugged it off and decided what to order. After we ordered she brought one salad to our large table and when we requested another one for the other end of the table she informed us that there are unlimited refills on the salad.

We informed her that we knew the salad was unlimited but we would like to have one salad per 4 people at each end of the table. At this point we were a little annoyed but it wasn't enough to ruin our experience at one of our favorite restaurants. This was of course until she brought out our food, (our HOT food) and had us pass plates. She then refilled our drinks and AGAIN had us pass them down the table. The best part came when she brought myself and another person at the table's drink she said "I can't remember which ones diet and which ones regular, is there a way you can tell the difference?" To which I replied "I guess we could taste it" she then said "whatever" very loudly. After recovering from our shock we flagged down a manager that was making the rounds asking certain tables if their experience was good.

I explained to him the situation, he looked shock and assured us we would take care of the situation and that he was very sorry. He offered no discount, no free dessert, nothing, whatever. Our server then came back to give us our checks and pick up our plates, she didn't say two words to any of us. She THEN asked us to pass down the entire tables dirty dishes to her so she could put them on her tray. I almost lost my cool, she then handed out everyone's bill and walked away. At this point I was furious, and was going to talk to the manager AGAIN on our way out the door. She then brought us back a stack of our credit cards in the folders they put them in, she then SAT the stack in the middle of the table and told us she didn't know who was who's and walked away. After signing our credit card slips and leaving I stopped and asked for the manager again. I then told him what had happened.

He again looked concerned and said "I will take care of it" at this point my co-workers and I were furious AND confused, wouldn't you offer something to a customer who just told you they had an awful experience at your restaurant? Instead he stood there, I finally lost it and asked how are you going to handle the situation, you told us that before and then we ended up busing our OWN table? He then ASKED us what we wanted. I walked out of the building as he then gave 4 of my co-workers a $5 gift card each. I feel like our $5 gift card was more like a tip for serving and busing our own table at a restaurant.

I don't know that I would even do this to family, but you certainly don't expect to do it at a restraint where you are paying not only for food but for service.
I have since given away my "tip" as I will not be returning to Olive Garden for a long time.
     
Read 23 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
It's an Olive Garden; it's Chef-Boy-R-Dee Italian food served by people who, yesterday, were asking drive through customers, "Do you want fries with that?" You got lousy service to go with lousy, microwaved, faux Italian cuisine. As much as I dislike chain, theme joints...I understand about the salads. I'll bet they throw away enough lettuce and veggies to feed all of the rabbits in Texas. So, they just put a small amount out at first and then replace the bowls, IF they are empty.
BokiBean on 2009-02-02:
Hey! I love that salad! :P
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
I do too, Boki. It p*ss*s me off when people waste it by asking for more and then not touching it.
BokiBean on 2009-02-02:
Me too! I could eat that salad more than any of the other glop they serve.
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
Funny, 'passing plates' is one of my fiancee's pet peeves. Could not agree more with Doc J's description of Olive Garden. Too often you can get better out of a can.

Next time you're hungry for Italian try a locally owned and operated joint. You'll get far better food and service from people who really appreciate your business. Good Review!
Lauren6996 on 2009-02-02:
Thanks all for your comments, I didn't expect much from the food but we really go there for the salad, I would say about half of my group got either soup and salad or just salad so the one bowl gave us meant we each got about two pieces of lettuce, a crouton and if you were lucky an olive and half a tomato. :)
I think next time we'll follow crabman's advice and just go to a local restaurant.
BokiBean on 2009-02-02:
I have been thinking on this passing plates thing. Its pretty disgusting when you think of it; it leaves the potential for a lot of thumbs/fingers in your dinner (those dishes can be hot too!), and then having to pass back a full table's dirty dishes is just gross. You were well within your rights to complain.
old fart on 2009-02-02:
I had "stuffed chicken Marsala" at Olive Garden a couple of days ago and it was pretty good but its hard to hurt chicken even in a spaghetti house like OG...
Lauren6996 on 2009-02-02:
I know BokiBean, I have never ever had a server ask me or anyone who was with me at a restaurant to pass plates. As a manager I would have been upset about having one of my employee's asking patrons to pass hot plates, nowadays that's opening yourself up to a lawsuit.
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
Next time try carrabba's, they are a bit more pricey but the food is outstanding, my personal favorite is the "Chicken Bryan"
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
Does the Chicken Bryan taste like dog?
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
Nope tastes like Chicken.
Starlord on 2009-02-02:
I have to agree on the passing plates thing, and the idea of passing the dirty dishes to the waitress because she is obviously lazy really got me. Were yu sitting in a mega booth? Even I know that the server is supposed to circle the table, and serve from the left and remove dishes from the right. You are guests, in the restaurant lingo, customers, actually. You are not part of the wait staff.
madconsumer on 2009-02-02:
if the waitress could not get to all the persons at the table, it would be expected to help pass dishes and what not. I recently was at a 3 star restaurant, and guess what, for our large group, 'we were asked to pass the plates'.

must be a personal thing.
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
Didja ever notice the wait staff busing up the other tables, their thumb in the leftover food? Then they come and serve yours, with their thumb in your food.
BokiBean on 2009-02-02:
No, but now I'm SURE I will!!! (ew ew ew)
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
I would rather wash dishes than bus tables and I did both jobs in the past.
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
Me too...it's hard to skim the waitstaff's tips when you're washing dishes.
Anonymous on 2009-02-02:
Good point and I knew guys who did that!
jktshff1 on 2009-02-02:
Doc...ya know ya just made Boki sick!!!
BokiBean on 2009-02-02:
Hahaha! :P
Roxy77 on 2009-02-13:
I can understand the passing of drinks, since holding up a tray with 8 drinks and passing them down a long table with cell phones on it is purdy hard. But passing plates?? I couldn't get away with that! lol The diet coke and coke incident can get confusing when having 8 drinks and 3 might be coke 2 diet coke and the other 3 Dr Pepper, but that's why servers usually will put straws in the Diets to tell the difference. Now the salad part, was everybody eatting salad or only 5 and less? If its 6 people eatting salad or more theres supposed to be 2 salad bowls. If not then 1. As for the waitress acting like that after you complained to the manager its understandable she was probably pissed off. All in all you had a crappy server. It happens I've had much worse and didn't throw as big as a fit as you.
mike stevens on 2012-02-12:
many times I have had the horrible experience with food served on dirty dishes and glasses being gritty and sticky at Olive Garden. But I complained to their office and lo and behold they gave me a $ 50 dollar gift card. The food is OK best thing about Olive Garden is their salad and breadsticks that's it. but if its free, who cares
Close commentsAdd reply
Extremely Poor Service
Posted by on
DEARBORN, MICHIGAN -- I am writing this review as a way to vent some frustration. Let me say that Olive Garden is one of my all time favorite restaurants and still is. A vast majority of the restaurants have excellent or at least good service and quality. My complaint is with one particular restaurant that just happens to be the closest to my home. The Olive Garden on Ford rd. in Dearborn needs to seriously revamp their service policy. After going to my daughters musical, I asked her what restaurant she would like to visit. She informed me the Olive Garden because she loves their breadsticks. After driving through yet another lovely Michigan blizzard of 9 inches of snow, we arrived to a 20 minute wait. There was 6 of us total. Despite having one large section totally closed off, I found this not to be a problem because we love Olive Gardens, and this was not an excessive wait. Once we were seated, the waitress introduced herself and proceeded to take our drink orders.

After waiting 10 minutes, we finally received our drink orders (5 cokes, 1 beer, 1 coffee, and 2 waters).She said she would be back to take our food orders. Once she left, we noticed the coffee, 2 waters and all the straws were missing. After unsuccessfully trying to flag down our waitress, I asked another employee (who I mistakingly thought was the manager), if he could help her because she seemed to be having a problem waiting on all of us. He Promptly said he would help and brought us out what we were missing. After another 10 minutes, we were still waiting for our waitress to take our food order. She finally took our food order which included salads and breadsticks for all of us. After waiting another 10 minutes, she finally brought out the breadsticks. 1 basket of 7 breadsticks and no salad to be found. After 2 minutes when all of the breadsticks were devoured, we asked another waitress if she could please tell our waitress to bring us out another basket of breadsticks and our salad. This other waitress proceeded to ask us questions such as did we know our waitresses name, what does she look like, what color is she, rather than going to the back and simply finding out who was waiting our table.

After being interrogated and having the waitress go to the back, we noticed the table next to us received their salad and they were seated 20 minutes after us. After not being able to take much more of this, we proceeded to walk out of the restaurant after laying money down for the drinks. We checked with the greeter and it showed that 1 hour and 7 minutes had elapsed between the time we were seating and the time we walked out. Still with no salad. I honestly cannot fault our waitress but I blame the managers. This waitress was not rude in any way but clearly was in way over her head and should have had more training. The managers are responsible for making that happen.

If you are in the Detroit area I strongly urge staying away from the Olive Garden on Ford rd. in Dearborn. As a final note, this was not the first time we had substandard service from this location but this was definitely the worst experience.
     
Read 4 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
ejack053824 on 2009-01-18:
Go to Bray's Hamburgers instead...if they are still around.
Anonymous on 2009-01-19:
Perhaps the waitress was new? Or the blizzard had resulted in the place being short-staffed? Perhaps the weather made it impossible for a manager to work the shift? Your bad service certainly deserved an apology. I think you owe them another chance before you recommend to others that they avoid this place.
Roxy77 on 2009-02-13:
I work at an OG as a server and I don't understand why you didn't ask for a manager? I have customers complain about not getting their 3rd basket of breadsticks when I tell them their making some fresh ones and it'll take a couple mins! lol An hour wait for salad is crazy.
Roxy77 on 2009-02-13:
Oh and about the,"This other waitress proceeded to ask us questions such as did we know our waitresses name, what does she look like, what color is she, rather than going to the back and simply finding out who was waiting our table." A lot of the time servers are busy running back and forth with their own tables, so when customers ask for their server we don't have time to go and ask every server in the back what section they have. That is exactly why servers give their name when they greet a table and wear name tags.
Close commentsAdd reply
Disturbing Disservice & Thoughtless Consideration For The Handicapped
Posted by on
ONTARIO, CALIFORNIA -- On March 31, 2008 around 1PM, My Aunt and I decided to go to Olive Garden in Ontario, California on 4th street for soup and salad.

My aunt just underwent surgery on both her feet one week prior, so she painfully hobbled in on crutches. We left her wheel chair/scooter behind in the car because we were both aware of the close tables near the entrance in the bar area.

As we both approached the front Hostess, we asked the greeting Hostess if we could be seated in one out of three empty booths near the front which we could clearly see. The front Hostess informed us the bar area was not available and closed although we could see several people eating.

After 8 minutes of waiting, I again asked her to make an exception with my aunt in pain and needing to take her medication with food and the response was, oh well, sorry.

The Hostess had us wait for more than 15 minutes total and finally a new server came in to take us back to the restaurant, several yards away from the front and more steps than my aunt was able to walk, so my Aunt changed her mind and wanted to leave, , so I again asked and also asked for the manager, who never did appear to talk with us. The new server who could clearly see my Aunts pain and discomfort placed us at the exact booth we asked for nearly 15 minutes prior to the wait.

I noticed as others were walking in the entrance of Olive Garden, the front Hostess was filling up those empty booths in the bar area with no wait.

My Aunt and I were told by one of the servers that if the Hostess would have known My Aunt were handicapped she would have then accommodated her... {How is two feet wrapped up on an elderly lady who is walking on crutches not handicapped?}

This unpleasant experience at Olive Garden gave me a new understanding of handicap discrimination, it is deplorable and disturbing that Olive Garden does not have a policy or procedure in place to accommodate the elderly or handicapped. My Aunts situation is just temporary, although it disturbs me that millions of people with disabilities are also being treated disrespectfully and humiliating as my Aunt was.

Possibly the front Hostess was handicapped herself with ignorance and rudeness, however, The Olive Garden Hired Her to Represent Them.
     
Read 20 RepliesAdd reply
User Replies:
Anonymous on 2008-04-01:
Yes, your aunt was treated thoughtlessly. Yes, you were lied to. And STILL you stayed to eat there. You must really love Olive Garden's faux, frozen 'Italian' food.

I am more concerned about the quality of care provided by your aunt's doctor. Operated on both feet of an elderly woman...and gave her crutches on which to ambulate when away from her scooter/wheelchair? No walker? Maybe he was looking forward to treating her broken hip after she fell. No? Let me guess...it was a podiatrist?
Principissa on 2008-04-01:
If anyone treated me or my family like that we would have left. I would have talked to a manager and left. Nobody, handicapped or not should be treated so callously.
What concerns me more is that your aunt had surgery on both feet and is using crutches. Why is she not using a walker? I would seriously take that up with her doctor. If she is unable to bear weight on both feet, she could fall and seriously hurt herself.
Anonymous on 2008-04-01:
Does Ontario still smell like cows?
Anonymous on 2008-04-01:
Not anymore but Norco still does.
CrystalSword on 2008-04-01:
Unfortunately many restaurants do not leave more than one or two tables...if that...for those using wheelchairs. Another problem I have encountered is the employees who will stand there while you struggle through an outside door with a wheelchair, and then often times there is a second set of doors before you are actually inside the restaurant, and they stand there and snicker under their breath...while a paying customer gets up from their table, letting their food get cold, while they hold the door for you.

Also, a host or Hostess can see you have a cane, crutches, or a walker and they put you at the table or booth furthest from the door and often times on the opposite side of the restaurant from the rest room, "so you aren't in anyone's way".

Handicapped people used to be kept shut in at home, where no one could see them, granted, some handicaps are not readily noticeable but things have changed. You got to get out of the house occasionally, not just for doctor appointments and trips to the pharmacy.

The larger stores and 98% of the grocery stores now have automatic doors, this has made shopping a pleasure for those who can't manipulate the doors and handicap device at the same time. Not all Michael's stores have the automatic doors yet, but I see it happening as more and more "differently abled" people venture forth into public view, not to be hidden away at home.

A disability is nothing to be ashamed of, my husband was extremely fit, held down a good job, and enjoyed boating, motorcycling, fishing, and camping...all that changed in a split second....it can happen to ANYONE!
Nohandle on 2008-04-01:
Yes, Alley she did mention there was a wheelchair in the car. I have an acquaintance who uses a wheelchair/scooter usually when she is in public. It's so much easier for her not trying to walk long distances. Sometimes she elects not to use the scooter if the car is parked at the restaurant door and there is a table nearby, once inside. Someone always goes in beforehand to make certain she can be seated.

Patjeanlw, since this was a new situation with you I know it never occurred to you to walk in first. Since there were tables available you and your aunt should have been seated immediately. I've said it before, we never know when we might find ourselves in the same situation. Shame on this Olive Garden location.
Anonymous on 2008-04-01:
Crystal, you make a good point about how some places will seat you. Families with small children, elderly and other groups will at times be seated by the kitchen, their "attic" and/or towards the back of the place. They want young vibrant looking people up front for their "window dressings" like the commercials will show.. Sad and maddening but true.
Anonymous on 2008-04-01:
It's interesting that this topic came up today: We had a lady come in to ask us if we had a wheelchair to use for her relative and one of our associates actually drove the electric wheelchair to the car for easy access! It was very thoughtful of the associate and that is the kind of help that should be expected and freely given.
Anonymous on 2008-04-01:
I spent 6 months in a wheelchair after an accident. It sure changed my perspective of being disabled. I could not believe how rude people can be. Most of the time, they simply cut in front of me. When I spoke up, they ALWAYS said, "Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't see you."

Yeah, right.
MRM on 2008-04-01:
Doc J, I ask this question with sincere: are you now healed and able to walk again? Six months confined to a wheelchair can certainly change your perspective about your body, how you can do anything before the tragic accident happened.
Anonymous on 2008-04-01:
I'm in pretty good shape now. I run daily. Still a bit of a limp. Best of all, I also learned a huge lesson in the need to be considerate of the disabled. They may get the 'good parking places', but they have no picnic among the able-bodied. Thanks for your concern. All best.
Principissa on 2008-04-01:
My grandfather had polio and spent his life on crutches and in a wheelchair. I have so much more sensitivity and respect for the handicapped because of him. It sickens me that people will treat people with a disability like freaks. People would cut in front of him, walk into his chair and their excuse all the time was "I didn't see you there." Disabled people are just like you and me, if you wouldn't treat an able bodied person that way, why do you treat disabled people that way? Poor policies and service on Olive Garden's part. Now that I know how they treat people with disabilities, I will make it a point not to patronize that restaurant. I've done it to places that treated my grandpa like he was garbage because of his wheelchair.
Starlord on 2008-04-01:
I want to thank my lovely wife and the others for their comments. Fortunately, there is an answer for these people who think it is a sport to make the 'cripple'as uncomfortable as possible. Ask the offender for their full name. When they ask why, tell them you need it for the subpoena list. When they then say what for, tell them it is for the federal civil suit for violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and that you are suing the business and them personally. It is bad enough to be invisible, but when people go out of their way to make it hard on you, let them know about it. We were at Sea World, in the shark exhibit, when some woman grabbed my rented wheelchair, pulled me back and stepped between me and the railing, making a comment that, "cripples didn't need to see." Touching a person's wheelchair is assault, just as touching the person's body would be. Had I known this at the time, I would have had her arrested for assault. As Crystal points out, we are all just a split-second from being crippled for life.
madconsumer on 2008-04-01:
I would like to hear the side of Olive Garden. there are always two sides to every story.
Anonymous on 2008-04-01:
I sat in the front booth of the bar at Olive Garden one night. I left handicapped.
CrazyRedHead on 2008-04-01:
I've been on crutches for almost 4 weeks and I can't stand them anymore. I'll be so happy when I don't need them anymore, they are annoying. I almost ran some lady over while in Walmart. She came out from behind an aisle by the checkout. She came out of nowhere. I had stopped and looked both ways and when I saw that the coast was clear I started forwarded when she rounded the corner and never even looked. I said to her "excuse me!" and she just looked at me. I told her that she needs to pay attention cause I almost ran her over, she said that she never even seen me, which I believed her. She never even looked down towards me when she moved. I told her to be more careful, she just looked at me like I was crazy. I never realized how rude some people can get until I had to ride that scooter.
Anonymous on 2008-04-01:
zzrokk hit the center of the target. The first seats visible to the public are always reserved for the 'good looking people'...cripples need not apply. Folks with crutches are not good window dressing.
MSCANTBEWRONG on 2008-04-02:
I find the restaurant personnel's behavior appalling. I too am also concerned that your Aunt's walking around on crutches vs using a walker or wheelchair. For her own safety, she should use her chair, scooter or a walker at all times.
Anonymous on 2008-04-02:
It is really sad the way that people today treat each other, especially the handicapped. To put these already disadvantaged people in back while the "pretty" people are out in front in full view makes me sick! The behavior of the Olive Garden staff is inexcusable. If you see someone struggling, help them out. Seat them, open the door for them, offer whatever assistance they need to make them comfortable!
FormerOGwaiter on 2009-11-07:
To OP:
I'm sorry you had a bad experience but I will look at this situation objectively:
1) One reason why you couldn't sit at the booth right away is because that section has no server, each section of tables has a server assigned to it. And it is company policy that only the maximum of three tables can a waiter be serving, hence all sections have only three tables each. And if no other server was available at that time, you were basically out of luck until that server started his shift. Unless of course the sever arrived early and is informed that his section is requested and that if he/she can start early. However this is not a guarantee since servers are not obligated to start early unless they are on call. When that server started his shift you and the other parties were seated at that section.
2)I don't find any evidence of discrimination based on your aunts handicap. All OGs are ADA compliant since they were all built after the ADA was signed into law, hence all hallways are wide open and you will ever rarely see any steps in an Olive Garden.
3) If you're aunt was in pain I would suggest not to eat out until she was able to wait and maybe walk a little bit. If she couldn't walk and if that was the cause of the pain then she should have been in a wheelchair. All four tops (tables that are not booths) are wheelchair accessible.
4) The manager failed to address this issue. You should call the GM of the restaurant or corporate (number is on their website olivegarden.com) They should send you a $25.00 gift card and a letter detailing that they received your complaint.
Close commentsAdd reply
Top of Page | Next Page >