I hardly ever go to chain restaurants. I like to know there is a proud owner in the kitchen, not a corporate committee somewhere trying to put together a formula for a restaurant that will attract lots of customers. But someone gave me a Cheesecake Factory gift card, so there we went.
Before I get to my own personal experience, I can't understand why THIS restaurant is so popular and always crowded. Its just like Cheesecake Factory's 170 other restaurants in 36 states. The prices are not cheap. The food is good, but no better than lots of other restaurants. Its noisy. And the decor doesn’t fit neatly into any category. My dining partner said it looked Egyptian.
A colleague and I went there for a late lunch. My pasta carbonara was excellent, and a perfect portion size for lunch. Not only was our waiter, John, attentive, but he was also knowledgeable. He said he had been working there for seven months, had tasted or at least seen and served everything on the menu, and could describe them all authoritatively.
Then the big test ... Cheesecake for dessert. New Jersey has a tradition of diners with outstanding cheesecake, and its right next to New York City which is also renowned for its cheesecake. How could a restaurant that descended from a bakery in Michigan, then migrated to California, compete?
Well, it can't. Although their cheesecake is not bad, I would only rate it about a 7 on a scale of 1 to 10. And their attempts to dress it up with dozens of toppings does nothing for me either. Once you have had perfect New Jersey cheesecake, you don't want anything extra to interfere with the pure cheesecake texture and flavor.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.