Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Carrabba's Italian Grill


Recommended Posts

Reservation? Carrabba's doesn't take reservations. If they did they would not have the turnover they do and would have to raise their prices. Again, if you go back try what I have suggested above. Also, weeknights there should not be much of a wait. On Friday and Saturday call 30 minutes before leaving home to have your name put on a list. Bonefish does this also.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i'll restate what others have said...

WOW, who knew Carrabbas could evoke such passion?

My opinion is that places like Carrabbas and Romanos can put together a decent dish. Personally I'd rather support independently run restaurants, but that's just my own weird little thing. Olive Garden, though, I hate because everything seems to come out piping cold. Oh, and it's nice how these chains seem to attract all of the families, so I don't have to listen to crying babies when I go to other restaurants.

I wanna say something. I'm gonna put it out there; if you like it, you can take it, if you don't, send it right back. I want to be on you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Reservation? Carrabba's doesn't take reservations. If they did they would not have the turnover they do and would have to raise their prices.

Birthday party of 14 for 7:30 pm. Called in at 2:00 pm. To me, that's a reservation, but if you want to call it "call ahead seating", that's fine too. "No Problem!" was the chipper reply. Either way, the wait was excessive and uncomfortable.

BTW... the man of the house says that I'm being a brat. We did have a great time with our friends that night... that's really what's important. When my birthday rolls around we're going to DiLulo's.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To go slightly off topic for a minute -- when DonRocks originally started this thread, it was with a (since deleted) complaint about the Carrabba's Father's Day ad on the radio. I heard that ad on the way home Friday night. And I agree - that ad was awful. It even included a song-type thing that I stopped listening to about halfway through (like I react to an Eagles song). That ad should have been smothered at birth.

Rick Azzarano

Link to comment
Share on other sites

razzar writes:

when DonRocks originally started this thread, it was with a (since deleted) complaint about the Carrabba's Father's Day ad on the radio.


I have no idea what Carrabba's father's day radio was like this year... i know that last year the ad had Johnny and Damian singing a Louis Prima kinda tune with Johnny's 5 year old son Johnny IV.. is that the one you're talking about?...

Please help me understand what you all consider to be good advertising... especially in the the food category... do you prefer ads that are pure entertainment, or those that are more substantial--- about the food... who does ads that you like and what is it that you like about them?Have you seen Carrabba's TV commercials? what do you think about them? I'm genuinely interested. Thanks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

alporcini -- thank you for your kind words of concern, but there's no need for you to apologise for the inexperience or lack of common sense that one server exercised. (Truly I think she had one of those "duh" moments realising what would happen as it actually did happen).

And welcome to eG. :smile:

As far as restaurant radio or tv ads -- Carabbas don't seem to air in Cleveland. But some of the Outback radio ones are funny. However was it effective advertising? I remember specific ads (good) but still have yet to visit a single Outback for a meal. :rolleyes:

Edited by beans (log)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it was the same ad. The main problem was that it was so annoying, especially when caught in rush hour traffic.

But, to your other questions -- No, I don't remember ever seeing a Carrabba's television ad. I'm not too sure, however, I ever like restaurant ads I see on TV or hear on the radio. Most ads, especially the locally produced ones, seem to gush over the food, like it is perfection itself. I think I really prefer print ads for restaurants. They can provide more hard info rather than merely trying to grab attention.

Rick Azzarano

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think I really prefer print ads for restaurants. They can provide more hard info rather than merely trying to grab attention.


Picture spinning newspapers with the following headlines, piling up one by one (also picture a 1950s street setting, with camera flashes going off and people wearing hats ...and do all this picturing in black and white):


"Carrabba's: This chain is pure gold."

Boston North Shore Sunday: 2003

"New Carrabba's Italian Grill a winner all around."

The Post-Standard: 2003

"Carrabba's worth its wait in savory Italian flavors."

Washington Post: 2001

"Carrabba's Italian Grill does not disappoint."

Detroit Free Press: 2003

"Carrabba's is worth a visit. Families and casual diners will enjoy its upbeat atmosphere and well-prepared food."

The Cleveland Plain Dealer: 2000

"Mama mia! Now that's Italian."

Tulsa WORLD: 2001

"...the ooohs and ahhs of customers as their food arrives all combine to create a sense of warmth and welcome."

The Canton Repository: 2001

"Authentically Italiano..."

Myrtle Beach Sun News: 2001

"Carrabba's Italian Grill shouts, ‘Buon Appetito!'"

Ahwatukee Foothills News: 2001

"Menu is a crowd pleaser at Carrabba's Italian Grill."

Miami Herald: 2001

"Carrabba's scores with its great service, its very good wine...and an accessible menu of updated Italian-American favorites."

Lexington Herald-Leader: 2002

"...Carrabba's Italian Grill continues the tradition of time-tested family recipes."

Tulsa WORLD: 2003

"Carrabba's is Highly Recommended."

Tulsa Broken Arrow Express: 2001

"It's a darned good restaurant..."

Gainesville Sun: 2002

"...Carrabba's Italian Grill is not your typical restaurant..."

Las Vegas Review-Journal: 2001

"...ay Carrabba's!"

The Detroit News: 2003


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, some of the others may be good, but I still think Carrabas sucks. I am sorry you had a bad experience at Dolce Vita, but I would ratther have a bad meal there than the crap I was served at Carrabas. I feel the same about most of their other chain restos also, Outback, etc. Just my opinion though.

Paris is a mood...a longing you didn't know you had, until it was answered.

-An American in Paris

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Cleveland has several Carrabbas. It is a chain, after all, with the same menus (with perhaps a few differences in wine lists or an entree or two) and standard operating procedures.

:laugh: I've been whining this whole time about the Carrabba's in Canton, OH. I didn't even realize that this was a regional board. Oops. I'm a dork.

Oh well, like beans says...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 11 years later...

This thread had been dormant for 12 years but when I did a search to see if Carrabba's had been discussed anywhere before, this came up.  My son, daughter-in-law and I went to the one here in Shawnee Mission last night.  We all liked to a lot better than any other Italian restaurant we'd been to.  Charlie had lobster ravioli and it was very good.  Cassie had scallops and steak.  The scallops were delicious but the steak was good but not really great. I had cioppino. Last time I had cioppino, it was at a restaurant at Pismo Beach in California in a booth with a huge window overlooking the ocean at sunset. I was with Joanie Sommers and while the stew was delicious, it was different from what I had last night.  They were both good but different. I don't know if one or the other was really 'authentic'. I know it originated in San Francisco, but it'is considered Italian-American dish.  The view for the former was certainly memorable. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Similar Content

    • By daniel123456789876543
      I have been making pancetta for the first time. I have experience with the curing process doing things like bacon and cold smoked salmon in the past but this is the first time I have ever hanged anything.
      After a week of curing it has had 11 days  hanging so far (I was planning on taking it to 28 days hanging) Although I foolishly forgot to weigh it. 
      It smells really good like some awesome salami and the outer rim of the pancetta looks lovely and rich and dark.
      It was a recipe by Kuhlman in one of their charcuterie books.
      But when I inspected it today it had the mould growing on it as in the pics below. I have since scrubbed the mould off with white wine vinegar and returned it to the cellar. Is it wise to continue?

    • By shain
      Makes 40 cookies, 2 loaves. 
      50-60 g very aromatic olive oil
      80 g honey 
      120 to 150 g sugar (I use 120 because I like it only gently sweet) 
      2 eggs
      2 teaspoons of fine lemon zest, from apx 1 lemon 
      230 g flour 
      1 teaspoon salt 
      1 teaspoon baking powder 
      75 g lightly toasted peeled pistachios
      50 g lightly toasted almonds (you can replace some with pine nuts) 
      Optional: a little rosemary or anise seed
      Optional: more olive oil for brushing
      Heat oven to 170 deg C.
      In mixer (or by hand), mix oil, honey, sugar, lemon, egg and if desired, the optional spices - until uniform. 
      Separately mix together the flour, salt and baking powder. 
      Add flour mixture to mixer bowel with liquids and fold until uniform. Dough will be sticky and quite stiff. Don't knead or over mix. 
      Add nuts and fold until well dispersed. 
      On a parchment lined baking tray, create two even loaves of dough. 
      With moist hands, shape each to be rectangular and somewhat flat - apx 2cm heigh, 6cm wide and 25cm long. 
      Bake 25 to 30 minutes until golden and baked throughout, yet somewhat soft and sliceable. Rotate pan if needed for even baking. 
      Remove from tray and let chill slightly or completely. 
      Using a sharp serrated knife, gently slice to thin 1/2 cm thick cookies. Each loaf should yield 20 slices. 
      Lay slices on tray and bake for 10 minutes. Flip and bake for another 10-15 minutes until complelty dry and lightly golden. 
      Brush with extra olive oil, if desired. This will and more olive flavor. 
      Let chill completely before removing from tray. 
      Cookies keep well in a closed container and are best served with desert wines or herbal tea. 
    • By psantucc
      My own recipe, though influenced by many sources.
      Santucci's Practical Torrone (Christmas Nougat)
      180g honey (½ cup)
      100g egg whites (2 eggs)
      350g sugar (1 ½ cups)
      50g water (2 tablespoons)
      450g (1 pound) roasted nuts
      5-10 drops orange oil
      2 sheets (8 ½” x 11”) Ostia (aka wafer, edible paper)
      Combine honey, water, and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to the boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Skim foam (if any is seen) off the honey when it reaches the boil.
      In a stand mixer, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
      Cook the honey mixture to 280° F (137° C). Remove from the heat. With the mixer on high speed, slowly pour the mixture into the egg whites. Continue to whisk until volume has increased by about half and the mixture just starts to lose gloss – only about 5 minutes.
      Reduce the mixer speed and add the orange oil and nuts. When they are thoroughly mixed in, spread the resulting nougat over a sheet of Ostia. Try to cover the sheet as evenly as possible- the nougat is sticky and will make things difficult. When it is evenly covered, top with the other sheet of Ostia.
      Leave to cool and crystallize completely in the open air before cutting, preferably overnight.
      Note: I call this 'practical' Torrone because the recipe is made for home confectioners of reasonable skill to be able to easily understand what and how much to buy and what to do with it. The ingredient portions are biased for my country, the USA, but I saw no point in using English ounces for the weight-based version – those of us who prefer weight generally prefer it in grams.
      Tips and tricks:
      1.Keep nuts in a warm oven ( about 150° F / 65° C ) until you add them. Adding room temperature or colder nuts will reduce working time.
      2.Getting the nougat spread between sheets of Ostia is the trickiest part of the process. I use buttered caramel rulers on the outside edges of the bottom sheet, pour and press nougat in place, and then press the top layer on with an offset spatula. If you don't have caramel rulers, try spreading the nougat with an offset spatula, topping with the other sheet, and rolling with a pin to smooth. I advise against trying to cast the slab in any kind of fixed side pan, as the stickiness will make it very difficult to remove.
      3.Score the top layer of Ostia before cutting through. Once scored, a straight down cut with a Chef's knife works well. Cut into six 8 1/2” long bars and wrap in parchment or waxed paper to store, then cut into smaller rectangles to serve.
      4.There are many possible alternate flavorings. 1-10 Lemon oil or 1 t. (5 ml) vanilla or almond extract work well and are traditional flavors. Candied orange peel and/or orange zest can also be added.
      5.I use half pistachio and half almonds as the nuts. Hazelnuts (filberts) are also traditional. Any common nut should work.
      6.Ostia is available from confectionery suppliers. I get 8-1/2” x 11” sheets from www.sugarcraft.com under the name 'wafer paper'.
      This recipe is copyright 2009 by Patrick J. Santucci. Contact the author on eGullet under the username psantucc.
    • By Paul Bacino
      1 C Northern Beans soaked over-night in
      4-6C Water or Chxn Stock
      1/2 t Cayenne Pepper
      1//2 t Granulated garlic
      1 twig Dried oregano-- dried from last yr
      2 Bay
      pinch of salt ( yes ) and few pepper corns
      in the Morning; All into the Slow Cooker for 5 hrs. ( Crock Pot )
      I removed half the liquor and added chicken stock here back in . to this I added diced cooked Italian sausage about 1 whole .. simmer in a pot.. I transferred to... then add 1/2 head of shopped chicory ( curly endive ) finish cooking 15 mins
      Most measurements again are from feel
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Create New...