I dunno, throwing in a package of pre-made pre-frozen raviolis that were already prepped at some factory assembly line and slopping some cream sauce from a huge vat of ready-made factory sauce dispenser or hydrated from constituted flour packets then sprinkling on a pinch of fresh basil to make it look more authentic is a far cry from: fresh veggies bought from where ever the heck they’re bought (who cares what kind of truck they’re brought in on) and fresh marinara sauces are made with said veggies and wine and fresh grated cheese, and pasta is made from scratch in-house. With Bread that’s baked in-house. Each cut of meat looks different and varies in size as opposed to the cookie cutter “meats” of lesser quality restaurants who have processed portions arrive pre-frozen. There IS a difference. And you CAN have the latter experience at reasonably priced non-chain Italian restaurants. And at home. But that experience is NOT Olive Garden.
While it can be just as tasty to the untrained palette or any ol palette its not the same.
All food snobbery aside, its the nature of the restaurant that makes it laughable to propose there. You have bratty kids running around unattended, cookie cutter meals, an environment that lacks ambiance, but that’s just it, standards are subjective. What one considers fine dining another considers sloppy low class kind of experience.
Did you know there are places that post/advertise that all they use is fresh locally grown stuff? i used to work at one and do all the shopping at the local farmer’s market.
but now i’m starting to feel bad for the people who live in places that have off seasons. around here we always got something fresh growing just right over there a few miles away. it makes no sense for places not to take advantage of it, because not only is it a great hook and the food is better, it’s cheaper too. it’s super common around here.
Having worked in the restaurant industry, that’s not really my experience. There are awful standards in chains & mom & pops, it really has to do with who’s running the show, and if they care.
For every place that shows up on Ramsey’s kitchen nightmares show, there are thousands that are doing a good job and are quite fastidious. The mantra I always heard was “if there’s nothing to do, you can be cleaning something.”
Slow days & times were time to move large equipment, scrub walls & the backsides of machines, and generally keep things spotless. Yes you’ll end up with dirty floors in the course of working a night, but most good places keep after that, and the working surfaces are always spotless & sterilized.
I wouldn’t eat at a restaurant that doesn’t do that, and the funny thing is you can tell by the attitude and the cleanliness of the front of house, in 90% of cases.