News Tidbits 3/9/09: It’s Just An Olive Garden

9 03 2010

Let’s be honest – Ithaca is maybe, ever so slightly, insulated from much of the world around it. The joke of “Ten square miles surrounded by reality” has just a little truth supporting it.

Well, down by Wal-Mart (the benignly named “South Meadow Square”) two outparcels are currently being developed. One is slated to be a Panera Bread. The other is going to be an Olive Garden.

That’s fine and all, but people are just getting too damned excited over this. By people, I mean locals who have lived an worked in the area for much of their lives. My boss and her full-time staffers just about did a tap dance on the counter when the Journal confirmed an Olive Garden was coming (in an exclusive story no less). I was shopping at Tops and the topic du jour was “when’s the Olive Garden gonna open up?”

Really? Endless salad and breadsticks are nice, but you can get the same at Joe’s further up the road near Inlet Island. I’ve been to Olive Gardens before, the last one being in Virginia back in July of last year. The food was decent, certainly nothing I’d write home about. Not exactly the most bang for the buck either (for that, there’s a mildly sketchy Chinese buffet next to the Ithaca Mall in Lansing). Getting all worked up over an Olive Garden planning to open in late summer/early fall is about as worthy an event to get excited for as a buy one get one sale on yogurt at Wegman’s.

Yeah it’s nice. You can sit down now.



One response

12 03 2010

Five Guys, now that was a resturant to get excited about!

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