Red Lobster

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Red Lobster is a fall back eatery for us.  The atmosphere is predictable, in a comfortable kind of way.  We like it, in general, but always have to ask for a table because the booths are crammed so tight neither of us feels like we can breathe, let alone EAT while in one.

We like the new wood grilling that they use now, it really does add a whole other level of flavor to the food even without any sauces or spices all over it.  They are also very good about children…even when other patrons are not.  More on that later.

This trip, we decided to take our sweet little daughter with us.  She is only 21 months old and she enjoys her voice…a LOT.  She is usually well-behaved but a little too loud, no matter where we are.  She laughs at anything, loudly, and she currently loves to point out colors and numbers on everything and she’s likes to sing and dance, even when she doesn’t know the song.  She can read quite a lot of words now so any time she sees one, she screams IT out as well.  We’re quite proud of her…but we need to work on her “inside voice”.

We chose lunch time since it is not as busy so it’s generally better for taking a small child.  Or having a quiet date…in case anyone is wondering.  It’s just a less rushed feel, all around, at lunch time.  We went for a late enough lunch so we got to order from the supper menu though, since I like it better than the lunch menu.  Not that there’s anything wrong with the lunch menu…I just prefer some of the items on the supper menu that aren’t available for lunch.

I’m still not very good at ordering from the children’s menu.  You might think this is weird but we have always just fed our sweetie whatever we are eating.  She was gnawing on steak and broccoli at 8 months old!  She has allergies that prevented us from feeding her jarred baby food (I was actually happy with this!) so she has not grown up with bland chicken fingers and boxed mac and cheese.  She’s grown up with homemade four-cheese baked macaroni and baked cheesy spiced chicken fingers and baked tilapia fish nuggets.  Choosing mac and cheese and chicken fingers (her favorite at home) is a dicey deal at a restaurant!!!

Our menus;

This is another place that I like Red Lobster.  On their children’s menu there are decent food items!  I ordered her a wood grilled chicken filet and mashed potatoes.  I asked a few questions about the smoothies (allergies again) then ordered her a strawberry smoothie as well.  I asked if the chicken was cut up and it was not.  This cuts into MY eating time but, whatever, it’s “my job”.

We each got the Shrimp Bruchetta, me without tomatoes…and YES they are accommodating enough to make bruchetta without TOMATOES!!!

I got the ultimate feast but changed it to suit me, they are SO good about making changes.  I changed the fried shrimp to grilled shrimp and the scampi to scallops (I don’t mind up charges for things that will obviously cost more!).  I got the caesar salad, the rice pilaf for my side and a glass of triple berry sangria to drink.  I didn’t care for the sangria but it’s not that it was actually BAD, it just wasn’t what I really wanted, I guess.  As I’ve said before, I’m just not a drinker and I’m picky when I do drink.  I switched to water with lemon after that.

My husband got the surf and turf deal, I actually can’t remember exactly what he had…I was busy with the baby!  I know he had a lobster tail and a steak, both of which he said were great!  I know he had broccoli too, because he gave it all to Rachel who woofed it down like she hadn’t seen it in a month (she has it about twice a week, on average!).  I really think that other than his caesar salad, that’s all he had.  He’s not home while I’m writing this…or I’d ask him!  I have to start taking a pen and notepad with us.  This would help with descriptions and weirder menu names and stuff like that too!  I’ve GOT to remember that!

If you’ve never been to a Red Lobster, you get cheesy garlic rolls.  If your waitress doesn’t bring them with your salad, ask for a different waitress because she’s not doing her job!!!  They are a basic!

I take FOREVER to eat, especially when you throw crab legs into the mix.  This doesn’t go well with an almost 2-year-old.  As luck would have it, she was in a really good mood and felt that she had a good audience.

I loved my food…all of it (except the sangria already mentioned).

Todd loved his food, except the broccoli that he foisted off on the baby!  They make a good steak there!

Rachel loved her chicken and Daddy’s broccoli but wasn’t sure about the smoothie at first (it was more like a strawberry milkshake and probably a disappointment next to the breakfast smoothie Mama always makes!) but she warmed up to it quickly enough.  The SECOND the waitress put her plate down she grabbed up a handful of potatoes and shoved them in her mouth.  She got a funny look and spit them out.  This distressed the waitress, for some reason (maybe she made them herself), I reached over and took a forkful myself.  They were plain…not even butter, salt and pepper.  I explained that she just wasn’t used to plain potatoes and they were fine.

Our waitress was sweet but not very good.  She was really good with our orders and even cut up the baby’s chicken while she was waiting for them to finish plating our dinners!  This earned her Bonus Points that actually got her the tip she got instead of the one she really “deserved”.  I even liked her enough to let it slide that I fished my extra lemon out of our waters!!!

The only thing that I REALLY mark as a downside to our visit was a few of the other patrons.

First, a guy asked to be moved as soon as we were seated.  When asked if there was a problem, he said he didn’t come to listen to babies cry through his meal.  They moved him but I was deeply offended!!!  She hadn’t even finished looking around enough to start talking loudly let alone CRY!!!

Then there was a couple who, when escorted our way, said they would prefer a “child-free” area!  Again, I was livid!!!  She was laughing and telling the waitress “OOOHH…Tank Oo” (Thank You), for bringing her smoothie!

We finally had a nice older gentleman (who smelled like moth balls but was really sweet) seated next to us.  He made faces at her and commented on her counting and reading and was just a wonderful man!  He didn’t order much and was gone fairly quickly though.

After that we had a lady and her daughter and they were very sweet and coo-ed over the “pretty little girl”, as most women will do.

So after being SO angry earlier…at least I got to have a nice calm end experience.  I just wish people would think before they say things so hurtful.  Or at least wait until it’s justified to ask to be moved!!!

 

 

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