Monday, April 5, 2010

Does Marie Callender's Stand the Test of Time?

Marie Callender's
31791 Del Obispo St
 San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675

Katie got two gift cards from her boss for Christmas to Marie Callender's. Growing up we frequented the one in Placentia and Anaheim Hills a lot. Living in Mission Viejo there is not one close to me, so I have not been in a long while. In my younger days what I remember most about Marie's was the small side of spiced apples that you got with your plate, and the cornbread. Both were real treats when I was a kid. Lets see if time has worn on old Mrs. Callender.

We showed up at Marie Callender's at about five on a Sunday night. After waiting for about five minutes for a hostess to show up and greet us, we were immediately sat. Not sure what was going on with the hostess situation, but one thing is for sure, old people love Marie Callender's. Katie and I walked into the place and we are pretty close to the youngest ones in the joint.

We both started with the all you can eat salad bar, this was $2.99 with our entrees, such a deal. I remember the salad bar seeming huge when I was a kid, but now it does not seem that big. I liked that they had nice chilled plates for the salad. The lettuce seemed fresh and they did have plenty of items for you to add to the salad. The soup seemed really good. The potato cheese soup was very creamy with big hunks of potato in it.

First up is Katie's sandwich. She got a Tuna Sandwich on a croissant with avocado added. This was not on the menu, but the waiter was very accommodating with this. The tuna was decent, and she really enjoyed the sandwich. I really saw nothing too special with this sandwich.

Here is what I got, the Works Frisco Burger. Bacon, lettuce, onion ring, thousand island dressing and American cheese on parmesan sourdough. The bread was very good, and the hamburger was very juicy. I am not usually a big fan of American cheese, but here it worked. I thought that $11.99 for this sandwich was way too high, but since Katie's boss was paying, I decided to splurge. The fries were okay, but they came out a little cold. One other note here that I thought was strange. When I ordered this, I asked the waiter for a side of Ranch dressing. He told me, "You can pick some of that up when you are at the salad bar". Just thought that was kind of weird, and they only had soup bowls up there, so wasted a lot of Ranch, but at least I saved the guy a trip.

You can not leave Marie Callender's without a piece of pie, and here is their French Apple Pie, with a scoop of ice cream. The pie was great and had lots of cinnamon and crumb topping. It was a very good end to the meal.

So, no spiced apples with our sandwiches, and no cornbread either. The food was good, but the service was lacking in many areas. I would not make a special trip to go to Marie Callender's, I thought it was over-priced for what you get. But if Katie's boss wants to get her a gift card again, I would not be against the idea of returning for another Frisco Burger.

Out of five pie plates, five being best to zero being worst, Marie Callender's gets 2.5 pie plates.

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  1. The potato cheese soup is so filling! I was so full that I couldn't have dessert. I love desserts, so that's saying a lot ( Good for you for persevering through the whole meal!

  2. Thanks Cookie, I only had about three bites of the pie, I was too full to finish. Thanks for the comment!