Food Review – Macaroni Grill


Yes, Macaroni Grill.  The US chain, known as “a casually elegant Italian restaurant serving handcrafted pastas, entrees, and a diverse wine list.”  Rarely seen as gourmet, or even really, really good.  Generally, we think of it as “upscale mall food”, not fast food, but not a dining experience, either.

We went last evening because there was a “buy one get one” voucher in our Entertainer book.  Our first choice had been the Outback Steakhouse at the Festival City Mall but they were closed for renovations.  We were there to shop at the ARTE Craft market –  Artisans of the Emirates –  being held at that mall.  There’s a particular vendor there that has the *most* wonderful handcrafted soaps, Firuza Wragg of Desert Rose Handmade Soaps.  Check out her shampoo bars – exquisite!

OK, back to the food.   TBG ordered the sampler platter, figuring it was pretty safe, and he had three chances to find something he’d like.  It promised chicken parmesan, lasagna bolognese, chicken & mushroom cannelloni.  I opted for the grilled salmon, but we splurged and asked to substitute the lobster mashed potato for the rice pilaf.  There are no “before” photos of our meal, because frankly, we didn’t have very high hopes that it would be outstanding in any way.  But let’s take a look at the “after photos”……

aerial view

Yes,  we ate every single bit of it.  Even the bread was delicious.

end of meal

It was good enough that when the Front of House Manager Mohammed came to ask how we’d enjoyed it, we told him to please give our compliments to the chef – everything was cooked well, served attractively and we loved it all.  He walked back to the kitchen, hollered “Chefs, please!”  and when he had their attention, told them what we’d said….. There were smiling faces and waves all around, then they went right back to work….


The restaurant wasn’t crowded, and our server was quite good – overall it was a much better experience than we were expecting, and we gave it a “We’ll be back” rating on the Trueblood scale of foods.


About DebbieT

I followed my husband to Dubai for a job. Then, I followed him to Bahrain for another job. Now we live in a bigassbus and travel all over the US, seeing all the things we missed before. I adore adventure and hate that wench on the WiiFit. Collecting experiences is my new hobby. I type and write just like I speak - fast with a lot of errors, and they don't trouble me at all. I have a very short attention span, am able to Google for something and not come up for air for hours, I am an encourager, a cheerleader, organizer and able to juggle multiple projects at once.

2 responses »

  1. Dear Debbie, as a PR for Romano’s Macaroni Grill I am pleased with your experience. I would like to have a chat with you and would like to thank you from our team. Fancy a meal there all over again, this time it’s on us.

    • Always glad to provide my personal opinion on my experiences – and don’t expect anything in return. But your gracious offer is appreciated!

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