Red Robin – Not So Yummmm

Thursday, January 24, 2013 - by Willie Mae

When Lois and I decided to go out for lunch this week, we had no idea where we were headed. If I go by myself, I will just pull in anywhere or head where someone suggests that I try. 

Everyone else will pretty much go anywhere I want to pull in, but when I go with my friend Lois we get tickled because we never can agree on where to go. Oh, she says that she “doesn’t care” but I know better by her tone or the way her mouth curves downwardly when she says that.

It was after church and I don’t like to eat early in the morning so I am famished by the time the service lets out.

I thought I would try one place that I knew Lois liked because she had mentioned it before. This place had a 45-minute wait and my stomach was about to eat my backbone.

There were little girls everywhere wearing ribbons in their hair. I think there was some sort of cheerleading convention in town. Most places in the city would be crowded so we headed back toward the Hamilton Place Mall where Lois is most familiar. 

Whatever I suggested, Lois said, “I don’t care, I am with you; I will go wherever you want to go,” but I know Lois too well (she would find something wrong with her meal if she were in a place she wasn’t hankering for).

Whenever I would hear the commercial “Red Robin …Yummm” I never paid attention to the food in the commercial, but the catchy jingle stayed in my head. I figured it was like a Bob Evans or something and I knew that would be a hit with Lois.

Red Robin had a 15-minute wait. Maybe my stomach wouldn’t work its way to eating my tailbone.

As we were seated, Lois looked up at the hodgepodge of collections hanging on the wall by our table and said, “Look at all those balls! I hope they are glued in real good, those are right over me!”

The place was so crowded it was uncomfortable. It was hopping like mad! The waitress was a frazzled young girl who looked as if she hadn’t had time to look up as she took our order. I guess when you get in that busy mode, you tend to rush people without knowing it. I don’t blame the little thing, I felt sorry for her.

After we told her we needed a  few minutes, I think she counted to one minute and a half before coming back to ask us again if we were ready.  The food was not country cooking; I guess it was what they call “Americana”. I call it “Hip- hop” … with the music; the young mall crowd with all kinds of hardware in their face and then the waitresses that were literally hopping to keep up.

We ordered appetizers and Lois got a milkshake to sip on while we waited. I was the opposite; I wanted something hot. I got the jalapeño coins; I had never heard of those.

For our meal we discussed several things - the Arctic Cod Fish and Chips for $9.97 or the A1 Peppercorn Burger for $10.19. I chose the Whiskey River BBQ Chicken Wrap for $8.29. Lois got the Royal Red Robin Burger for $8.99

Our waitress was still in a hurry because shortly after she had brought our sodas and took our order, she brought me another Coke before I had even taken two sips on my first one, nearly slamming it down on the table.

Lois pointed out a stack of onion rings that were brought out to someone’s table. They reminded me of the stacking plastic rings on a stick and board that I had for my son when he was a baby - assorted sizes that were strategically placed to get smaller as it went up the stand. We had wished we had ordered that – just the presentation made it look appetizing!

When my coins arrived, they were fried slices of jalapeños and I liked the looks of those too! Only, I couldn’t retrieve them.

There was no utensil to get them out of the bucket they came in, and Lois and I planned to share.

We were only given a fork rolled up in a napkin so I took my unused fork and scattered a few on my plate. They were good and hot!

After eating the jalapeño coins, Lois asked for water. She said they were too hot (she was sipping on her milkshake; I thought that would have cooled her tongue).

There were plenty of kids at the tables and I could tell it was a family place to eat, good to bring your family when you want a quick meal and you are not focused on the service.

Our meals arrived and it filled the empty spot in our gullet, but it wasn’t anything to write home about.

My flavorless chicken was diced small and I didn’t taste the Whiskey in the sauce (maybe that was good since I was driving).

I like to find the special places that have fresh food or that have character to remember. I like something unique or that specializes in a signature dish. But sometimes, I try a simple franchise and give you my take on it.

Take the kids… but don’t take home a box.


Randall Bowman And Deep South Smokers BBQ Capture 1st Place Honors In 2017 Ooltewah BBQ Brawl

Randall Bowman and Deep South Smokers BBQ from Cumming, Ga., captured first place honors in the Judge's Choice and People's Choice Competitions at the 2017 Ooltewah BBQ Brawl.      Mr. Bowman and his team earned $1700 in prize money and they gathered the Golden Ticket and automatic entry into the World Food Championships to be held  Nov. 8-16,  in ... (click for more)

GNTC’s Culinary Program Presents Special Luncheon To Enhance Cooking Skills Of Students That Studied In Ireland

Georgia Northwestern Technical College (GNTC) held a special luncheon that offered Culinary Arts students, that studied abroad in Ireland last year, the chance to prepare and serve traditional Irish cuisine using the cooking methods and techniques they learned overseas.  The luncheon, “An Afternoon in Ireland,” was also a hands-on lab that was part of the international course ... (click for more)

Hamilton County Schools On 2-Hour Monday Delay Due To Weekend Storms

Due to this weekend’s storms and heavy rain that lead to numerous power outages and road closures, Hamilton County schools will be on a two-hour delay on  Monday . This will allow buses to operate during daylight hours to avoid debris in roadways. School-age childcare will open at the regular time. (click for more)

Angela Faye Parker, 50, Arrested In Stabbing On Glass Street

Angela Faye Parker, 50, was arrested early Sunday morning after stabbing another female. Chattanooga Police responded to 2302 Glass Street at 12:15 a.m. to an assault. The victim and Ms. Parker were both patrons of the Pay-Pay Lounge.   The victim advised that she was physically attacked and maced by Ms. Parker in the restroom. Upon arriving home for the evening, ... (click for more)

No Tax-Supported Entity Should Get Secrecy In Spending

A shadowy situation has emerged in Chattanooga with an organization that manages millions of taxpayer dollars with no transparency and such a surprising disregard for accountability that one wonders what it would take to wake up elected officials who are supposedly in charge. Welcome to the Chattanooga Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, whose lawyer threatened to sue the ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Is Dr. Edwards The One?

Just hours after the chairman of the Hamilton County School Board emailed a list of 14 candidates on Friday afternoon to be considered as the next Superintendent of the 42,000-student system to the other board members, Dr. Nakia Edwards, an Assistant Commissioner with the Tennessee Department of Education, became the early “common sense” favorite. And, at first glance, she has ... (click for more)