Tuesday, November 03, 2015

Romano's Macaroni Grill, O'Hare Airport

As you read last week, I recently travelled through O'Hare airport.  I visited Tortas Frontera for my savory food, and then eagerly set off to TCBY to get some froyo.  There was a TCBY in my hometown when I was growing up, and I recall going there for a splurge from time to time, getting a "shiver", with my favorite candies mixed in.  Definitely my introduction to froyo, and I hadn't encountered TCBY in years.  I was so excited, particularly since I didn't really love my lunch.

I rounded the corner, determined and excited, only to discover that the froyo machine at TCBY was ... broken.  I still really wanted dessert, and I had very little time left, and few options.  I basically had two choices: Chili's or Romano's Macaroni Grill.

I picked Romano's because I did have fond memories of that place too, although not necessarily for dessert.  And no, these weren't childhood memories.  I only ever visited Romano's in California, when I moved out here.  Let's just say I ate very differently when I first moved to California (I was mostly vegetarian, for one), and I recalled being quite into the eggplant parmesan or the create your own pasta options at Romano's.

So ,Romano's it was.  I was met with a fairly boring dessert menu: tiramisu, cheesecake, chocolate cake, or gelato.  I ruled out the melty item, and the ones with caffeine, and settled on cheesecake.
New York Style Cheesecake / shortbread crust / fresh strawberries.
I laughed when I opened the box.  “Fresh strawberries”, eh?  And what were these giant chunks of … biscotti?

Looks aside, the cheesecake wasn’t very good.

It wasn’t very creamy, it didn’t really have any cream cheese flavor to it.  Or *any* flavor really.  It was just ... there.  On top was what I guess was a little whipped cream?  It was white, but it wasn’t fluffy or creamy, and also didn’t taste like anything.  The white layer was too thin to really tasty anyway, and it only extended part of the way back.  Even canned whipped cream would have been better than this.  Maybe it was sour cream?  But it didn’t taste sour either.  I have no idea.

The crust was probably the best part, a sweet crumbled shortbread crust.  It wasn’t great, don’t get me wrong, but it was better than the cheesecake itself.

As were the large chunks of biscotti.  When I looked at photos online after, I saw that normally these are little pieces, crumbled up on top.  That makes slightly more sense, as the big chunks just seemed strange and out of place.  The biscotti had a nice texture, and actually a bit of flavor.  Nothing special, but not awful.  If I had coffee with me, I would have liked to dunk them.

The fresh strawberries were indeed just mushy berries in a way-too-sweet syrup.  They were certainly not fresh berries.  Fairly awful.

So ... yeah.  Flavorless cheesecake, sweet strawberry goo, and random biscotti.  Not a winner.
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