Casual dinner restaurants might seem like fine dining at first glance, since the restaurant may have a similar menu and a pleasant setting, but you will not have to make a reservation. Casual American clothing will do, including jeans, though most restaurants insist on shirts and shoes. Some restaurants serve a general American menu, while others have specialized, often ethnic, themes.
Casual dinner restaurants almost always serve alcoholic beverages from a prominent bar area, and offer both lunch and dinner items in the $15 to $25 range. Some have televisions located strategically throughout the restaurant, especially at the bar, commonly showing sports events.
Large national chains comprise the bulk of casual dining restaurants in the United States. The largest is the general-menu Applebee’s chain. Other prominent chains include:
- Red Lobster, specializing in fish and seafood
- Outback Steakhouse, which has an Australian theme
- Chili’s Grill and Bar
- Olive Garden (Italian cuisine)
- T.G.I. Friday’s
- Ruby Tuesday
- Hooters (waitresses in skimpy cheerleader outfits)
- The Cheesecake Factory (fancy plate presentation and architecture)
- Lone Star Steakhouse and Saloon
- Red Robin (hamburger specialist)
- Longhorn Steakhouse
- Pizzeria Uno (deep-dish pizza)
Most of these casual dinner chains advertise quite heavily on television and even on the Internet.
Next Section:Coffeeshops and Diners
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