Location: 312 35th Street NE
It’s been a really long time since I’d been to Red Lobster. We used to go all the time because there was a closer location (it was the go to place for us to take my grandma out for lunch), the one on 16th Ave, but ever since it closed down, it’s been inconvenient to go across town to the other two locations.
Not exactly sure what the occasion was for tonight, but we headed down here. The wait time wasn’t too bad considering how many people were waiting for a table. It was beautiful weather and it wasn’t a burden to have to wait outside watching the sunset. Once seated we were informed that our waitress would be with us shortly. We waited for quite a long while before she came by to take our drink orders. It was long enough for us to have decided on a starter and place the order for it. She returned with our drinks and as it turns out, she did not have the specific flavour drink I wanted. I wasn’t too upset by this as I did actually want the one I ended up with initially. My favourite thing about Red Lobster is their cheddar biscuits and when she came to drop off our drinks she had a basket there. There was so much hope and excitement that when she took it to the next table, the table that had come AFTER us, I was very disappointed.
Shortly after she returned and we placed our orders. As we had place our order for the starter ahead of time, it arrived almost immediately after our orders were taken. We had ordered the White Wine and Roasted Garlic Mussels. Though I am not typically a fan of mussels, these I have to admit were amazing. That may of course have to do with the fact that there was garlic, but the mussels themselves were very fresh. There was no detectable fishiness that I abhor. After that came our salads. The caesars were ordinary, but the blueberry balsamic was something unique. It was not until after our salads came that they finally brought us the bread. I was so tempted to eat the entire basket, but refrained so that I would be able to eat my main when it came.
I was able to get through one biscuit before our mains arrived. We came during Lobsterfest, so ordering something with lobster was a must (at least for me, because when else would you get to enjoy such a luxurious ingredient). I ordered the Dueling Lobsters, my sister had a Surf and Turf dish, my mom got some kind of Lobster and shrimp dish, and my dad got the make your own entree, choosing to have the coconut shrimp, shrimp Linguini Alfredo, and sundried tomatoes and green beans. My dad was the only one who didn’t order lobster because of some health concern I didn’t catch because he was muttering under his breath.
My main was especially huge (it took me three days to actually finish the entire dish). The dish consisted of two lobster tails done two ways (a lobster tail medallion with some kind of cheesy rice mixture like a rice au gratin, and the other was grilled and stuffed with mac and cheese) , mashed potatoes, and sundried tomatoes and green beans (it turns out this was a new menu item and it was pretty much included in every dish and everyone in my family decided to get them). It was so rich and delicious, but my only complaint was how salty it was. It was as though the chef didn’t take into account the inherent saltiness of seafood. My sisters dish had the lobster tail medallion as well, paired with her steak. The steak was cooked to perfection, according to her. And overall was a pretty good dish. I wasn’t really sure what my mom thought, she was a little busy eating and I didn’t get a chance to ask her. My dad’s was pretty ordinary. It’s something I used to order as a kid and those coconut shrimps with the dip are so sweet and oily, it’s easy not to be able to finish them. They are delicious, just a little hard to get down because just too much deep fried.
Overall, this is a good casual place to go for dinner. It is definitely kid friendly. The only complaints I had were that the food was over-salted and the waitress incredibly slow. Sure, I understand that it was a busy night, but it wasn’t any busier than what I had seen in the past at this location. Maybe they were understaffed. It could have been any number of reasons. I may just be bitter that another table seated after us got served before us. For this evening’s experience I’d have to give it a 3.2/5, but I would still come back to this place. And hopefully when I do, the service will be better.
*I apologize for the quality of some of the photos. I had no idea how dirty my camera was.