Restaurant Review-Red Robin
Gluten-free menu - Was there a “gluten-free” menu available
Kind of. Upon being seated, I let my server know that my wife and I were both gluten free and asked if a gluten free menu was available. She said there was, then came back with an Ipad that had an app that was supposed to allow me to plug in my various food allergies (gluten and dairy) and then show me which menu options I could have, or how to make other options gluten/dairy free. While it is a great idea, the app kept shutting down on me and I finally gave up and went to the regular menu to decide what to order.
I will say that the gluten-free app showed chips and salsa as a gluten/diary free option, however when I inquired with my server she informed me that the chips are in fact fried in the same oil as gluten-containing products.
Service - The server was friendly and seemed eager to meet my specific gluten and dairy free requests, even on a busy night. After being served a large slab of cheese on my gluten/dairy free bunless burger, (which I’ll get to the details of in a bit) the manager and my server were very apologetic.
Knowledge- The server seemed somewhat knowledgable about the menu items, however when I inquired about the tortilla chips she mentioned that she thought that they might be made with wheat. I was a little confused about this statement as tortilla chips are rarely made with wheat but I let the comment slide. She did know that the kitchen has a designated gluten free fryer and assured me that if I ordered fries they would be prepared in a separate fryer to avoid cross contamination.
Safety of Food- I’m still not sure. My wife, a celiac, ended up playing it as safe as possible by ordering the simplest salad on the menu (the simply grilled chicken salad). She made sure to tell the server twice to hold the croutons and cheese and requested a basic vinaigrette on the side. For once her meal actually arrived as ordered… then came mine. I ended up ordering a bunless burger with mushrooms and a side of sweet potato fries. I actually came to this restaurant quite hungry and looking forward to a gluten free burger. However, upon inquiring about the buns I found out that while they are gluten free, they do contain dairy. Thus, I opted to hold the bun and just have the meat patty and toppings on lettuce. Ironically, even though they omitted the bun because of the dairy, they still served my burger with a huge slab of melted cheese on it. And, rather than getting sweet potato fries I was served basic steak fries (I was assured they were gluten free). Hey, at least my wife was happy.
Taste and Cost/Serving Size– The taste was decent. My wife did enjoy her salad and remarked that she was surprised by how much salad she was served (although her chicken breast was quite thin, it was a full breast that had been halved lengthwise to appear as a larger portion than it actually was). I will say the price was quite affordable so I guess you get what you pay for.
Overall Experience - The overall experience was ok. As previously stated, my server was friendly and, while very busy, seemed eager to meet our requests. The place was pretty slammed as we ate our meal and was quite loud and chaotic (seems like a pretty popular place among the high school crowd). I really like where the restaurant is trying to go with the gluten-free app and I love that they are attempting to accommodate the gluten-free population. I just don’t think they are there yet... or at least they weren’t the night that we dined at Red Robin.I give them 2 stars as, even though they struggled with my gluten/dairy free meal, my wife seemed to get out of there unscathed.