Posts Tagged ‘Recipe’

Olive Garden Review – Indianapolis

December 13, 2008

Restaurant: Olive Garden
Location: Indianapolis (Castleton), IN
Address: 6130 East 82nd Street  Indianapolis, IN 46250
Hours: Sun – Thurs 11:00a.m.-10:00p.m.  Fri – Sat 11:00a.m.-11:00p.m.
Menu: Olive Garden Menu
Today’s Meal: Zuppa Toscana Soup, Breadsticks, Fettucine Alfredo, and Soft Drink
Cost: About $15
Type: Italian
Loyalty Program: None Known

Today was lunch at Olive Garden.  I was anticipating that there could be quite a long lunch wait since this location is close to the mall, which would be extremely busy being so close to the holidays.  Upon entering, they told me it would be a 5-10 minute wait, not bad at all!  It ended up being about 10 minutes (perhaps a little longer), but the wait was very reasonable.  The table I set at ended up having a weird placement.  It was situated right by some little closet-like room, where from my seat, I could see a yellow industrial mop bucket with a mop in it and the clay-colored tiled floor with black grout.  It reminded me of a floor from the 80’s, like you would see in Pizza Hut or something.  The ambiance was a little ‘off’ from the Old World Italy (or something like that) they try to recreate from my seat! 

First up was the soup, and I really do enjoy the Zuppa Toscana.  It has sliced potatoes, sausage, and some greens in a white broth.  While I was there, I heard some customers raving about the new Chicken and Gnocchi soup with chicken, dumplings, and spinach.  I did not try it though.  I also had breadsticks with my soup.  The breadsticks are plain, and they are best eaten with other parts of the meal.  For instance, I really enjoy dipping them in a bit of the broth from my soup, and they are also good when I use the sauce from my meal to dip them in.  For some weird reason, one of my favorite places for bread sticks is the fast food Italian place, Fazolis.  They are so buttery, and when they come out warm, they almost melt in your mouth, delicious! 

My meal was the Fettucini Alfredo.  The pasta was cooked to perfection, and the alfredo had a nice, creamy taste to it.  It was served nice and warm.  My only complaint would be that I only had about two bites of my soup before the meal came out.  Therefore, I didn’t even get to enjoy most of the soup.

I happen to like a plain Fettucini Alfredo without meat or anything, but you would have to ask if you were interested in getting anything added to this dish.  It does not list anything available for add-ins such as broccoli or shrimp or chicken on the menu.

Make your own Fettucini Alfredo at home with this recipe from Kraft!  It only needs 8 ingredients, or which half you probably have around your kitchen.

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Don Pablo’s Review – Indianapolis

November 8, 2008

Restaurant: Don Pablo’s
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Address: 3824 E. 82nd St.  Indianapolis, IN 46240  Map This on Mapquest
Menu: Don Pablo’s Menu (Must Click on “Menu” Link on Home Page)
Today’s Meal: Create Your Own Combo – Pick Two – Two Cheese and Onion Enchiladas, Mexican Rice, Corn Meal Spoon Bread, and Soft Drink
Cost: About $10
Type: Mexican Food Chain
Loyalty Program: Habaneros Club (Must Click on “Habaneros Club” link for more information.)

Today was a very good experience at Don Pablo’s.  The server was very friendly and was very attentive.  They stayed on top of drink refills and my meal came out exactly how I had ordered it (even with a special request).  The enchiladas were very good, the rice okay, and the corn meal spoon bread was great.  I always save mine until the end, and it is a sweet way to end the meal without having to get dessert. 

I was quite pleased with my visit to this Don Pablo’s today as I have had a very unpleasant experience at the one in Westfield.  I had to wait there for about 20 minutes before my table even saw a server for the first time and was even asked what we wanted for our drinks.  Then it was another long wait before we actually saw our drinks.  That was just the start of the poor service.  The manager even came around after hearing about our situation but did not even seem that concerned about the whole ordeal.  This was at a very busy time of day for the restaurant, and I have had better experiences when coming to the Westfield Don Pablo’s at their off times when they are not busy.

Oh, and if you really enjoy the Corn Meal Spoon Bread like I do, the easiest recipe to get something really similar (although not a 100% match), is to go buy the Chi-Chi’s Fiesta Sweet Corn Cake Mix.  It is like a corn meal mix that comes in a pouch.  The back of the pouch tells you what ingredients that you also need to buy in order to make the Corn Cake.  At my grocery store, the Chi-Chi’s Fiesta Sweet Corn Cake Mix is located with items like taco shells and taco seasoning.  The Corn Cake makes a great accompaniment to a lot of the Mexican dishes that I make.  You can go to the Chi-Chi’s products site to see what the packaging looks like and to see what store near you carries their products.