Friday, November 09, 2012

Bowie Restaurant Project: (60) Applebee's

For an explanation of the Bowie Restaurant Project, look here.

For a list of all the Bowie Restaurant Project reviews, look here.

Applebee's, 4100 Crain Hwy.
Most Recent Foursquare Check-in: 11/7/2012
Total Foursquare Check-ins: 1
Pre-Foursquare Visits: Yes
Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

I am struggling to pick out something that really makes a difference between Applebee's and Ruby Tuesday. I said Ruby Tuesday seemed slightly more "adult" and that's true. The decor at Applebee's is ever-so-whimsical (oh, look, a picture of a caboose), and the menu is a little zanier. In particular, there was a dish with a mix of bratwurst, chicken, french fries, cheese and probably some other stuff that tempted me until I realized how disgusting it would probably be once it was in my stomach.

But the same basic principles -- suprisingly good service, mixed results on the food that applied at Ruby Tuesday's applied here. The artichoke dip was so-so. I ordered a chicken and shrimp skillet that was served overly hot (if you're going to give me my food on the dish you used to cook it, then at least give me a regular plate as well). My colleague's steak, however, turned out pretty well.

Thankfully, I have been to other Applebee's, so I don't feel the need to return to their Bowie location before writing a review. In particular, when I lived in Athens, GA, Applebee's was one of the limited number of dining options, and it was a "safe" choice where you could go if your dining companions didn't like weird food. I wish I had done an "Athens Restaurant Project" back then. The dining scene was notoriously limited -- people complained about how often we ended up at the same places -- but I bet a thorough search would have turned up a few more gems.

Anyway, 60 restaurants reviewed. Nineteen or twenty more to go -- including Chili's and TGI Friday's. We'll see if those distinguish themselves at all from the last two.

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