The Olive Garden sent me back a list of technically gluten free items; i.e. “order the following without (croutons, bread, etc.). And then provided the CYA statement that recipes, ingredient sources, etc, may change from time-to-time and that because everything is hand crafted, mistakes may (read: will) happen. Basically? No guarantees. Personally, I never went there once I knew I couldn’t have gluten. Given the number of horror stories I’ve heard – up through present day. Way too many instances of salads coming with croutons, and the kitchen picking them off and sending the same salad back – with obvious crouton crumbs left behind.
This isn’t just for gluten; OG says anyone with gluten intolerance or any other “special food sensitivities” are basically eating at their own risk. OG assumes NO liabilities for any mistakes they make and that you should speak with your physician first. (Demonstrating a complete lack of understanding on healthcare costs. How many of us can afford to go discuss everything we might eat, every restaurant we might eat at, with our physicians before we go out to eat? As if having to be gluten free wasn’t expensive enough!)
I also asked many times and many ways what they do to try to prevent cross contamination in the kitchen. They did a superb job of completely avoiding every single which way I asked about this, telling me very clearly that they really don’t try at all.