It has been quite a while since I was in an Olive Garden but over the past couple years people have given the supermodel and I several gift certificates to there so we decided to use them.
I have been to Italy many times and I also have some roots in the Mediterranean Peninsula as do extended family and friends.
First of all the decor of the interior of the restaurant is not that of any town I have ever stayed in in Italy. It reminded me more of Greek island decor.
I ordered the Zuppa Tuscana and a chicken vegetable dish. The soup was good for a chain restaurant but I have had much better in other establishments. The chicken past dish was just as tasty but still lacking that oomph that you can get from other Italian establishments in Philly with about the same price point.
The supermodel ordered the standard angel hair pasta with red sauce.
Whoever is the chef in this particular kitchen would be run out of Italy for what they did on this dish. They cut the pasta into little one to one and one half inch lengths. This may even involve prison time in this great country of our ancestors.
Even children over there don't eat cut up pasta.
In addition the sauce tasted more like chunky tomato soup than the awesome fresh sauce that you get there.
I believe Olive Garden should rebrand themselves as Eye-Tal-E-An Pasta Palace as they really mislead America on what real Italian food is.
It is my hope that if Olive Garden continues to brand themselves as having trained in Italy that they straighten their food up before my next visits or I might just order salad and breadsticks.