Chain restaurants are often scorned by people in big cities who prefer local joints.
But Tom Sietsema of the Washington Post
points out how big chain restaurants are making customers happy, and even suggests independent restaurants take a cue from them.
Here are three of Sietsema’s takeaways showing what chains like Applebee’s and Olive Garden are doing right.
1. Chain restaurants are welcoming despite their large size.
“After introducing himself, a server asks companions and me if we’d like a gratis taste of the wine the Italian restaurant is highlighting tonight,” Sietsema writes of Olive Garden.”We nod, and a splash of red is poured into the stemware pre-set on the table. Moments later, a basket of piping hot bread sticks, bundled in linen, follows.”
2. Chains offer decent, affordable meals.
Applebee’s has a deal that lets diners choose to sample two entrees for as little as $US10.99. Olive Garden added a number of small plates to the menu this summer, and 60% of Red Lobster’s menu is now under $US15, Sietsema notes.
3. They are conscious of calories.
“Casual chain restaurants are eager to help you monitor any dieting, with Applebee’s serving lemon Parmesan shrimp over rice at under 550 calories and Olive Garden devoting a section of its menu to Lighter Italian Fare: lasagna primavera with grilled chicken and other entrees at under 575 calories,” writes Sietsema.
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