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Feb 7, 2009 05:25 PM

I don't care if I never set foot again in a...............

Wendy's, Applebee's, TGI Friday, Ruby Tuesday

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    1. When I read your title, all of the last three and Bennigans occurred to me. They all offer pedestrian fare with trumped up names and muted flavours, insincere, inconsistent, and frequently inept service, and an atmosphere that makes conversation (as opposed to shouting) almost impossible.

      But I'll stick up for Wendy's. For a fast food joint, they're OK - a lunch of their chili with a baked potato is incredibly cheap, filling, tastes fine, and nutritionally, surprising good - only 510 calories, 10g of fat, 11 g of fibre (half the daily requirement), 22 g of protein, and 70% of your vitamin C, and 30% of your iron.

      Compare that to a Big Mac and small fries - 760 cal, 40g of fat, 6g of fibre, 27 g of protein, 40% of your iron, and only 4% of your vitamin C. Plus, I find after eating a Big Mac and fries, I'm still hungry, but the Wendy's meal (perhaps because of the fibre) fills me up. I'd choose the pigtails over the arches any day of the week.

      12 Replies
      1. re: KevinB

        Agree on the chili at Wendy' ain't bad.

        1. re: monku

          When there isn't a finger floating in it.

          I know the finger thing was a set up, but I can't help but think of it whenever someone mentions Wendy's chili. Not fair to Wendy's, but just the same...

          1. re: lynnlato

            I usually order three fingers of chili when I'm there.


        2. re: KevinB

          Caesar Side Salad - Romaine, Shredded Parmesan, Bacon Bits, & Garlic Croutons

          For $1.29? Awesome.

          1. re: soypower

            True, I don't like that much fast food. I do eat the occasional Whopper Jr, I admit. But Wendys isn't bad. Hey it is fast food what do you expect.

            When I go to Bennigans, Applebees, etc, Rubys, TGIF, I try to stick with what will be good. Don't get a steak or a pasta dish, we all know it is premade and not fresh. Heck anyone who has ever worked in a restaurant knows that. But a good burger, chicken sandwich, nachos or something like that is a better and safer bet. My homemade pasta ... I made, same with steak or a good roasted chicken and vegetables. But a burger of sandwich, french dip, blt, etc. I think they all do a descent job.

            I meet clients a lot at those places ... clients like it, and I stay with the safe calls, and overall ... they are ok. And for a post before, same goes for Chilis, Denny's I only do breakfast and Cracker Barrel actually has a few good things ... Olive garden, their soup and salad I totally admit I love (even though my pasta fijole (sp?) I like better) however, when it comes to lunch out. That is a nice lunch for the price. Melting Pot, over priced. Subway, I get the veggie sub toasted. Personally, I like them and go back often, I like a few of their subs.

            Maybe I am lucky here and I have good managers and staff at these places. Burgers are cooked to order, nothing overdone, usually no wait and descent help. I think the staff plays an critical roll in these types of places.

            But I realize that food from those places is not mine and also don't expect too much. I take it for what it is worth. But I have been to some that will never go back again too, but I don't even think they are around any more.

          2. re: KevinB

            Agree wholeheartedly; and not just because I worked at a Wendy's in 1979. (I think they've rotated out the chili since then). Yes, their burgers, like all fast food burgers, are too thin and only come well done, but they are tasty and juicy and the toppings are fresh.

            Applebee's is the worst of the worst.

              1. re: Firegoat

                The last time I was in a Bennigan's was in 1990. We ordered some nachos and after half-an-hour, were presented with FIVE largish Dortios-style chips and a ramekin half full of lukewarm Cheez-Wiz. Haven't set foot in one in 19 years.

                1. re: monkeyrotica

                  I don't think I've even SEEN one in 19 years. Looks like they're still around, though, and opening new locations:


                  1. re: Suzy Q

                    We have 3 locally. Where do you live :)

                2. re: Firegoat

                  most bennigan's went bankrupt (their parent). some were (somehow) independent, and remain open. here in d.c. area they closed.

                3. re: KevinB

                  Second the thumbs up for Wendy's. the recipe for their chile is all over the net and tastes just like a cup of the real thing!

                4. I don't mind any of the four you've mentioned enough to hate them, but I'd finish your sentence with "Ted's Montana Grill" in a second. Yuck.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: Suzy Q

                    Oh, really? I love Ted's or at least did the last time I was there in 2009.

                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                      My last two trips to Teds involved a painfully dry bison burger, painfully slow service, which is a shame because my kids really liked their shakes.

                    2. re: Suzy Q

                      Wow, I always mention Ted's as a chain that does it right.

                      1. re: RetiredChef

                        I'll stand by Ted's until I make another visit.

                    3. Cracker Barrel, Applebee's, Chilis, Denny's, California Pizza Kitchen.

                      1. IHOP, Olive Garden, BennirubychiliTGapplebees.