We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Not our best experience at Olive Garden”
Review of Olive Garden

Olive Garden
Ranked #240 of 990 Restaurants in Madison
Price range: $0 - $20
Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups
Dining options: Reservations
Lacombe, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
197 reviews
128 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
“Not our best experience at Olive Garden”
Reviewed September 10, 2013

We were sat promptly but it took a little time for the waiter to stop at our table. He seemed very busy but also very chatty. When it was our turn he gave us his attention though.

We ordered our drinks and meals at the same time and, like most good waiters, he didn't write anything down. He confirmed my order, since I had a choice of multiple items, and he had it wrong, so I'm glad he confirmed first.

When our orders arrived, my sons was wrong - not even close to what he had ordered. We told the waiter right away about the mistake and he offered immediately to correct the mistake but said he might as well leave the wrong dish while we waited or it would just be thrown away. By the time the correct meal arrived, my husband and I were almost finished. The manager did come over and apologize for the mistake and said we wouldn't be charged for either of the meals.

At the end of the meal the waiter apologized again for the mistake and commented that he wished we had got him at a better time. It was almost 8:00 p.m. and he commented that he had started his shift at 11:00 a.m. - no wonder he was making mistakes!

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Cindy E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

75 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Level 5 Contributor
82 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed August 15, 2013 via mobile

My family loves to et at Olive Garden, and decided to eat here since it was close to where we were staying. Tha food was great as usual, but what stood out at this restaurant was the service! I have never had quicker service in any restaurant! Our waiter was awesome.

Visited August 2013
Thank Linda C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Racine, Wisconsin
Level 6 Contributor
88 reviews
29 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Stick with what you know”
Reviewed August 12, 2013

My daughter & I thought we'd celebrate our birthdays by eating at Olive Garden during lunch. Our waiter was very friendly and took our orders promptly. It was around 1 p.m. so the lunch rush was over. I ordered a chicken alfredo calzone. The outside crust was very very hard, the broccoli and chicken pieces were few. It came with a teeny tiny cup of alfredo sauce. My daughter ordered a chicken parmigiana sandwich. Her sandwich crust was also very hard and she said the sauce was flavorless. She thought perhaps the little cup of tomato sauce might have some taste, but she said that was even more bland. No spices, no flavor, nothing. I would suggest sticking with the soup and salad for lunch (great price/deal) or re-ordering something you've tried before. Neither of us will be stepping outside the box again to try something new...it was a big disappointment for our birthday celebration.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank TravelingWizard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Poynette, Wisconsin
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Service is annoying”
Reviewed March 22, 2013

First off, I got asked 3 times how are WE doing before my friend and I ordered. That is annoying, not because it was 3 times but because they use the word we.

There were dozens of empty tables and they sat us next to the only crying baby in the place.

The manager came by and thanked us for being there for lunch. She asked what we were having. My mouth was full, as I had just taken a bite of the bread-stick, so my friend answered that she was having soup, and I was having chicken-something. I was still chewing, but the manager addressed me and asked me chicken-what? I indicated that I was chewing. She started naming the different chicken dishes they had, expecting me to answer! I was chewing! Leave me alone!

The salad came and I didn't even fully have it on my plate when my entree arrived. I sent it back - they can microwave another one later. When I did get my entree, I hadn't even taken a bite when I was asked how it was. I told her that I hadn't taken a bite yet. She returned to ask again how it was when I was chewing the first bite. Leave me alone!

I know they are trying to have good customer service, but they have to realize that guests are not there to talk to the Olive Garden staff. This used to be a thriving restaurant at lunch time, and it was not at all thriving when we were there. Maybe that is the reason why. If my friend didn't chose to go there now and then, I would never ever go back.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank SandyCooley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Waunakee, Wisconsin
Level 6 Contributor
157 reviews
129 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“It's good, chain or not”
Reviewed March 20, 2013

My wife poo poo's this as a chain restaurant and usually won't go there but I do. The soup and salad lunch can't be beat. You can have a bowl of every type of soup they have plus the salad which I like a lot at a great price. Ok, so it's not local but what local place has this kind of lunch?

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank LorenD1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Olive Garden also viewed


Been to Olive Garden? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing