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Olive Garden: Delicious pasta & the best bread sticks.

Olive Garden: (A)20080 Langley Bypass (N) 6045143499

Because of Monkey boy cousin “turning-a-year-older-day”, I ate at Olive Garden. Along with his 3000 something cousins, could also be 20, I don’t know, my numbers are somewhat always off, well according to my calculus tutor. My first Olive Garden experience was in the summer with Monkey boy, he took me there and what I thought was an old-people-only go-to restaurant, ironically turned out to be one of my fave pasta place now!

  • Bread Sticks: All reviews I read on Olive Garden mentioned their breadsticks, and so will I. I can eat this and not eat anything else. No seriously, everyone at the table had to bite their fingers just because they don’t want to fill up on this.
  • 3 Samplers ($12.75): Our picks: stuffed mushroom (I always order this, made with calms!! So delicious), calamari (yum) and we usually pick the deep fried mozzarella sticks those are soooooo good, but unfortunately, “sold out” so we replaced em with toasted beef and pork ravioli (I didn’t like them, waayy too dry). The others ordered the same thing, I sneakily tried a bit of everything, have to say the fried zucchinis are awesome. My tip here is you save the sauces, they’re are tres bons paired with the breadsticks.
  • Lasagna Fritta ($10.5) Don’t know why we decided to order ANOTHER appy on the side. Parmesan-breaded lasagna pieces, fried and served over alfredo sauce, topped with parmesan cheese and marinara sauce. It was pretty delicious but I’m going to be quite honest here, don’t remember much about the dish.
  • Soup&Salad: These are unlimited!! The Zuppa Toscana is the BEST! Tried some of the others, Chicken & Gnocchi came in second, although the creaminess is really overwhelming. We paid extra for caesar salad but it was huge!
  • Steak Gorgonzola-Alfredo ($20.50): OMGOSH THIS IS AMAZING! BEST pasta I had ever tried, EVER. Grilled beef medallions drizzled with balsamic glaze, served over fettuccine tossed with spinach and gorgonzola-alfredo sauce. The picture makes me sad because it does not do justice on how amazing and delicious and wonderful this dish is. I’m mad at myself for forgetting my camera at home and have to rely on Dota boy (Monkey boy’s lil brother) iPhone 4. But it’s amazing! The whole dish is just perfectly balanced. Must be the gorgonzola alfredo sauce! At least 10 people tried Monkey boy’s dish and everyone agreed it was the best!
  • Stuffed Chicken Marsala ($21.25): This was right on the front cover, along with the words “Oven-roasted chicken breast stuffed with Italian cheeses and sun-dried tomatoes, topped with mushrooms and a creamy marsala sauce. Served with garlic parmesan mashed potatoes.” Like damn, how can I pass on that one? I thought it was pretty delicious until.. I tried Iron Chef boy’s chicken pasta. Wrong choice Panda, wrong choice.
  • Chianti Braised Short Ribs ($20.75): Everyone else pretty much ordered the same thing, Dota boy ordered this dish and I remember Monkey boy had this once and it wasn’t all that great. And… nothing changed since.
  • Chicken & Shrimp Carbonara ($20.95): What I really been dying to talk about is this. Sadly no picture, but I will definitely order this the next time I’m there, SO DELICIOUS I HAVE NO WORDS. Have you ever had chicken that is so soft, it LITERALLY melts in your mouth? This is it.
  • Zeppoli ($7.50) One of the greatest masterpiece of desserts I had ever laid eyes on in my long 21 years old breathing. Holy smokes, every time I come here I’d be dying plus crying at the same time from over eating, my stomach feels like it’s about to give birth, I look and feel like an elephant and somehow I still manage to shove these suckers in. It’s not pretty to witness but yes, these are amazing. Traditional Italian doughnuts dusted with powdered sugar, served with chocolate, raspberry & caramel sauce for dipping.
  • Pretty good and fast service. I like how they come around with a pull out table when serving you!
  • Amazing wine selection from Italy, I really like the Mascato.
  • It’s ALWAYS busy and I mean ALWAYS. You should make reservations.
  • There is ALWAYS a huge line, we went on a weekday and it was crazy packed. The wait time was an hour, thankfully…. it happens to be in a plaza where you can do shopping. Squeeze in some last minute shopping in there? Yes, I did.
  • Order: Steak Gorgonzola-Alfredo + Chicken & Shrimp Carbonara. I promise.
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    1. I fucking asked more than once how the hell do you get up there?!?!? If you’re going to say it’s mainly for decorations I will punch you in the face.

      It is there so that [insert certain adjective here] people ask why somebody put a table on top and/or how do you get to sit there! :) Otherwise, I doubt you will be able to punch my face! :D

      For the 3 of us, the bill came to $120. A bit much for 3 people, but we did order 3 entree, 4 appies and a dessert.

      No offence but, $120 for 3, I can think of better places to go (for example, a sushi AYCE, visit to an izakaya or hot pot). But, assuming for a moment price is not an issue, Olive Garden is a mix for me. On one side, it is what it is. I have been to a couple and, depending on what you order, it is exactly what you get. Breadsticks, unlimited soup or salad and so on. It is not the greatest of food (I find their pasta overcooked) and some of their meats could be made “better”. Still, you can’t deny that a lot of people might not be adventurous and Olive Garden fits the bill.

      • Panda

        Yeah I thought it was a lot for 3 people but for 3 people we were eating for at least 5 hahha!!! Kim why are YOU always the one bursting my bubble :( I guess as soon as I reach 30 I’ll start counting backwards hahha no more after 30.

        You really think I can find a decent pasta around the range of $20 bucks around here???? Fill me in!!!

    2. I have been to Ciao Bella a couple of times and I think they make a decent pasta under $20. And, during lunch and/or Mondays/Tuesdays, they are 50% off. Likewise, Q4 has $10 pasta on Tuesdays. If it is Surrey, sorry Princess, I am not knowledgeable about that part of town.

      The one thing I have about pasta is that… Well, it is something “simple” to make; but, some restaurants charge an arm and a leg for it. I guess there are reasons but for the most part I fail to see it.

      I didn’t burst any bubble, I wanted to confirm what you wrote! :P

    3. Panda

      Yeah same with SALADS! I never ever order salads dining out because I can make salads more than half that price they charge. But pasta, the most part being is the ingredients they use. Some butter are imported, mainly the cheese are the ingredients that cost an arm and a leg. Even at your typical market they’re expensive.

      I’m not even a huge fan of Italian food anyhow, I rarely ever get cravings for pasta.

    4. Butter? Prefer to use local butter. If you were to use DOP Parmigiano-Reggiano, OK, I will undertand that “extra” cost; however, you might as well use Grana Padano and, for the most part, it works the same way! So, no, I still don’t understand the high cost of pasta! :)

    5. Panda

      You will have to try some imported butter! I recently came across “Bretel butter” which is imported from France. It’s quite costly for butter but that’s what I am trying to say. Most of the ingredients they use in dishes are probably Imported. But still… I am asian :D I would never eat pasta any more than 2-5 times a month.

    6. Is American butter considered “imported”? :)

      I will refer you to this YouTube link (if I haven’t done so previously):

      It can be imported but, hey, does it really make such a HUGE difference? And when does diminishing returns kick in? For example, once in a while I make my own pesto:

      Bunch of basil: < $2
      Cashews (instead of pine nuts): < $0.50 (I have a whole jar I eat frequently from).
      Olive oil: < $0.50
      Grana Padano (in-lieu of Parmigiano-Reggiano, heck, you can even use Kraft Parmesan and most people won't notice!): < $1
      Some other "extra" ingredient: < $0.50

      A box of Barilla pasta could set you back $2, so, for less than $7, you have a plateful enough to feed four. I do this for myself once in a blue moon and… Well, I end up eating pasta for several days! :)

    7. Pingback: Olive Garden: Valentines dinner | fatpandavan

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