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New at the Olive Garden --- hamburgers.

Firegoat Dec 4, 2013 07:13 AM


Don't really see the fit with the rest of their menu, unless they are about to go weirdly completely mainstream to keep up with Chilis/Applebees.

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    51rich RE: Firegoat Dec 4, 2013 07:33 AM

    they seem to be the last of any restaurants to add them.burgers have come roaring back with a vengeance.for 40 years no one dared compete with the big 3 fast food burgers- now that the dam has broke, everyone and his cousin are in the burger business (thankfully some of the mid-level chains are actually good) . wouldn't be surprised if mc'ds rolled out a new upscale chain

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      ferret RE: Firegoat Dec 4, 2013 09:12 AM

      Is that one of the recipes developed at their Training Institute in Tuscany?

      1 Reply
      1. re: ferret
        drongo RE: ferret Dec 4, 2013 10:38 AM

        They actually give it the fanciful name "Culinary Institute of Tuscany" -- http://www.olivegarden.com/About-Us/C...

      2. zitronenmadchen RE: Firegoat Dec 4, 2013 12:51 PM

        I can't remember where I read it, but I thought it was funny, the higher ups at Olive Garden were nervous about the burger, especially the arugula because they felt their clientele was only familiar with ice burg lettuce. Way to sell your audience short.

        10 Replies
        1. re: zitronenmadchen
          ferret RE: zitronenmadchen Dec 4, 2013 03:39 PM

          "Way to sell your audience short."

          Oh, I'm pretty sure they know their audience.

          Here's a little more info on their handling of arugula:

          "The solution to appease the palates of Olive Garden diners, as Nuetzi found out, was like what a lot of people do with the sometimes-troublesome green: smother it in fatty stuff until you can't taste it anymore. That includes throwing mozzarella, prosciutto, and aioli spread on it. "Nuetzi tweaked it after diners weighed in — doubling the aioli spread, slicing the tomatoes instead of dicing them into small pieces because they fell out of the bun and made a mess," Bloomberg reports."

          1. re: ferret
            zitronenmadchen RE: ferret Dec 5, 2013 07:13 AM

            I would think a hamburger would be a good introduction to arugula for someone who has never had it before, the peppery bite would blend well with the richness of the meat. But maybe that's just me, I like arugula on my burgers.

            1. re: zitronenmadchen
              ferret RE: zitronenmadchen Dec 5, 2013 07:27 AM

              I'm pretty confident that "introducing customers to new ingredients" is not on Olive Garden's agenda.

              1. re: ferret
                zitronenmadchen RE: ferret Dec 5, 2013 07:55 AM

                Very true, they are in the mushy pasta and tasteless-except-for -the-garlic-salt-on-the-outside bread sticks, business.

                1. re: zitronenmadchen
                  jrvedivici RE: zitronenmadchen Dec 5, 2013 07:57 AM

                  Their new slogan should be;

                  "Now ruining more than just Italian Food"

                  1. re: jrvedivici
                    libgirl2 RE: jrvedivici Dec 5, 2013 10:08 AM

                    Oh that is too funny! I was mentioning this the burgers to my son. I said why not try improving the food that they already make? Or have some REAL Italian dishes that aren't just mushy pasta and cheese/alfredo sauce?

                    1. re: libgirl2
                      51rich RE: libgirl2 Dec 5, 2013 02:57 PM

                      if they did that the customers wouldn't recognize what was on the plate and would have to ask if they got the order right!

                      1. re: 51rich
                        libgirl2 RE: 51rich Dec 7, 2013 11:25 AM


            2. re: ferret
              Ttrockwood RE: ferret Dec 7, 2013 06:23 PM

              Speaking of smothering in fatty stuff- that burger clocks in at 1020 calories and 66g fat!
              That's before the side of fries or the unlimited salad and breadsticks!!

              1. re: Ttrockwood
                magic RE: Ttrockwood Dec 7, 2013 07:01 PM

                Or 27 Points Plus for all you Weight Watchers out there :)

          2. Veggo RE: Firegoat Dec 4, 2013 12:54 PM

            $10 hamburgers elsewhere shortens the payback time on my charcoal Weber.

            1. Tripeler RE: Firegoat Dec 7, 2013 08:47 PM

              Maybe Olive Garden wanted to offer one more thing that people could complain about?

              1. Mattapoisett in LA RE: Firegoat Dec 8, 2013 08:11 PM

                Maybe they could do a noodle Burger akin to the Ramen Burger


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                  HillJ RE: Firegoat Dec 10, 2013 12:56 PM

                  Isn't the burger a flattened version of the meatball sandwich though? I thought the commercial that ran only showed an Italian-styled hamburger, not say a cheddar & bacon type of burger. Am I wrong?

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: HillJ
                    Servorg RE: HillJ Dec 13, 2013 08:30 PM

                    One detailed review with photos here: http://www.businessinsider.com/olive-... (and I'll have to say that for 2 self-professed Oliver Garden lovers this review didn't exactly extol this burger).

                    1. re: Servorg
                      HillJ RE: Servorg Dec 13, 2013 08:39 PM

                      That doesn't even resemble an Italian-styled hamburger. Where's the tomato sauce? Huh.. No wonder..

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