Over the weekend we met our friends, Joey & Eddie, for lunch at Red Robin. I've never been to a Red Robin, but having heard the kids of We're Mean Because You're Stupid talking about their "bottomless fries" last summer, I've been a little more than intrigued. I haven't exactly busted any speed records to get over there, cuz it goes against my whole "chain" thing, but I haven't crossed it off my list of possibilities.
I had ass u med that Red Robin was on the same level as a What-A-Burger…a burger chain type place. It's more along the lines of a Chili's or a T.G.I. Fridays. Chili's and T.G.I. Fridays, by the way…my LEAST favorite types of chains! The one nice thing I can say about them is that regardless if I'm in Austin or Kalamazoo, I can order my "favorite thing" and it'll taste exactly the same in both places.
Since Red Robin didn't have "counter service", it was an HONEST TO GOD restaurant, I had to get some help from the ladies. I got on le' cell phone and sent an urgent 411 to Twitter asking what I should order. My lovely Walt responded that the Royal Red Robin burger often brought him "tears of joy". In an effort to make him cry, without punching him in the throat, I closed my menu and ordered just that when the waiter came back to the table.
As a group we started off with the tower of onion rings.
These things were tasty, but they weren't any better than the rings you get at Hut's, and I CERTAINLY didn't think they were worth the NINE DOLLAR price tag. At thirteen rings, that's about 69 cents a ring. For real? You can buy a whole onion and some beer batter for a helluva lot cheaper than that.
So the waiter brought our food to the table. Walt, SOLID suggestion. The burger was delicious.
I didn't even worry about the slim quantity of fries on my plate. Honestly, I was so full after everything I didn't care if they were bottomless or not. AND, I was pleasantly surprised with the bill:
Until I found out that their "kids eat free" promotion ends at the end of the month. You'd expect to add another $10 to this total for the kids meals/drinks…which, at that point, it becomes a little more expensive than I care to spend on LUNCH.
The ONLY complaint I had about this particular Red Robin was the bathroom was the most disgusting bathroom I had ever been in in my entire life…okay, that’s a stretch. But, seriously, there was a busted water something or other somewhere in the bathroom and I was literally splashing at the urinal…NOT something I want to be doing, splashing in someone else's urine (that I DON'T know!). I brought it to the waiter's attention, just in case they didn't know their bathroom was flooded. I said, "I'm not sure if y'all are aware of it or not, but the floor in the restroom is flooded". Do you know what the twink asked me? For real? "Uhhhhhh, the womens or the mens restroom?" You just can't buy stupid like that.
But I realize this isn't a reflection of the quality of the FOOD at Red Robin.
I've decided to start ranking my restaurant reviews on a 5-Star system. That said, Red Robin gets: