The Olive Garden food truck, which features the casual Italian-American chain’s new breadstick sandwiches, is hitting the road, as we reported last week. The truck is coming to Boston’s North End — Beantown’s Italian neighborhood — and the area’s Italian restaurateurs are none too happy about their new mobile neighbors.
“There is nothing authentically Italian about Olive Garden,” George Mendoza, one of the owners of Monica’s in the North End, told Boston.com. “It’s an insult to everyone in the North End selling Italian food for more than 100 years. It’s like if you took a P.F. Chang’s and put it in Chinatown and passed around spring rolls.”
Olive Garden will be giving out free samples of their new sandwiches in the North End on Saturday, June 13, but according to Italian restaurant owners, you shouldn’t go, especially if you value authentic cultural (and food) experiences.
“Olive Garden has nothing Italian on their menu,” Damien DiPaola, who owns Carmelina’s and Vito’s in the North End, said.
Olive Garden has been criticized in the past for its dubious ties to Italian cuisine. The chain’s menu contains an abundance of items like fried lasagna, Spanish tapas, and hummus, none of which could be described as authentically Italian.