Tag Archives: restaurants

An (almost) Photoless Chain Restaurant Review

One of the things I envisioned on this blog was reviewing restaurant dishes for their flavor and healthfulness, and I had an excellent opportunity to do that last night. Unfortunately, I completely forgot I wanted to do that here while eating my meal last night and only thought of it after the fact this morning. So because of that, I have no photos. A secret goal of this blog is to include some sort of media in each post- photo, video, audio, whatever. I still plan on making that happen here, somehow. So I’m using internet photos- none of the photos in this entry are mine, and if they belong to you and you’re super pissed I used your photos of the food at Cheddar’s, sorry. I’ll take them down upon request.

Backstory:

While listening to The Happiness Project, I got an idea (stole an idea from Gretchen Rubin) to take my parents out to dinner for their 30th wedding anniversary. She had organized a big fancy party for her mother in law, and considering my time restraints (their anniversary, Sunday, is the day they leave for a week long vacation), I couldn’t quite do that. So I told them to pick a restaurant in town and I’d buy them dinner. They landed on Cheddar’s.

I had eaten at Cheddar’s before, and I usually like it quite a bit. I’ve never tried to eat healthy there, though, which can dramatically altar one’s experience with a restaurant. I had oscillated between ordering the Monte Cristo sandwich:

A deep fried sandwich seved with a side of jam. Delicious and deadly- much like me.

and the buffalo chicken tenders:

Deep fried buttery spiciness. Also just like me.

I knew I couldn’t have those two items- I’m trying to be good.

So, what are Cheddar’s options for those of us who would like to survive the meal? Well, some, but not a lot. They offer several fish and chicken options, but you have to make sure you order them not fried or doused in buttery sauce. The sides offered are also dangerous- I made the mistake of ordering the corn picture in the above photo. It came absolutely drowning in butter! So, of course, I ate each and every one of them. They were freaking delicious. I figured I was being good otherwise.

Here’s the complete menu available online!

I ended up getting the grilled salmon with broccoli and the aforementioned delicious corn. It was fairly inexpensive as far as salmon goes, and that’s a real advantage to Cheddar’s. They are really reasonably priced with large portions! As a fat dude, I still really like eating, I’m just trying to eat better things! The broccoli was steamed, I believe, and it was great. I happen to love broccoli, so I don’t take much convincing, but it was bright green and still crunchy without being undercooked. Perfect.

The salmon itself had some butter on it, I could tell, but nothing excessive. And it was grilled nicely, but… I don’t know… it was a little flat. I don’t know what could have been done to it that wouldn’t have added calories, and maybe this is the life I will lead now as someone who eats well, but, I was a tad disappointed.

And my parents got this incredible delicious fried food. And I didn’t eat any because I’m doing so damn good. If you’re interested in seeing what the salmon looked like, it’s pictured on their “our nutrition information is coming soon” page.

So, overall, I’d pretty highly recommend Cheddar’s. Order smart and pay attention to what kind of protein you’re ordering and how it’s prepared. The best thing is its price- excellent for a “chain” restaurant. And, actually, the best part was hanging out with my parents for their anniversary. They’re the best. 🙂